Do you want to become a Canadian citizen and you would like to check your eligibility to apply? Our team of experts at RUTE Immigration can help you with your citizenship application and advise you on the best time to apply and strategy to successfully obtain Canadian Citizenship.
In general, anyone who is born in Canada is automatically a Canadian citizen. Permanent residents of Canada can apply for Canadian citizenship if they meet the following requirement of the Citizenship Act:
1) Be a permanent resident of Canada; 2) reside in Canada for three out of five years; 3) language requirement (be able to understand and speak basic English or French); and 4) knowledge about Canada requirement (Canada’s history, geography, government, and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship).
If the applicant is a child under the age of 18: 1) the child must be a permanent resident; 2) does not have to have lived in Canada for three years; 3) the child’s parent, adoptive parent, or legal guardian, and one of the parents is already a Canadian citizen or is in the process of applying to become a citizen. This applies for adoptive parents also.
In certain situations, a person who was not born in Canada can apply for a certificate of citizenship showing that he or she derived citizenship at birth from a Canadian citizen living abroad.
Citizenship Act with Bill C-6 Amendments
The changes that took effect as of October 11, 2017:
- Applicants must be physically present in Canada for three out of the last five years (1095 days), with no minimum number of days per year, before applying for citizenship.
- Applicants must file Canadian income taxes, if required to do so under the Income Tax Act, for three out of five years, matching the new physical presence requirement.
- Applicants may count each day they were physically present in Canada as a temporary resident or protected person, before becoming a permanent resident, as a half-day toward meeting the physical presence requirement for citizenship, up to a maximum credit of 365 days, within five years preceding the date of application.
- Applicants between 18 and 54 years must meet the language and knowledge requirements for citizenship.
In addition, the permanent residents applying for Canadian citizenship must not be in doubt at any time, meaning that he/she must not be subject in an immigration investigation, immigration inquiry or a removal order.
An individual with a criminal history cannot become a Canadian citizen if: in the three years prior to applying, one has been convicted of a criminal offence under the Citizenship Act, is presently accused of a criminal offence under the Citizenship Act; is currently, or has been in the last 4 years, in prison, parole, or probation; has been asked by Canadian officials to leave Canada (under removal order); is being investigated for, accused of, or convicted of a war crime or a crime against humanity; and has had his Canadian citizenship removed in the past five years.
The Federal Court of Canada is the decision-maker in all revocation cases, unless the individual requests that the Minister make the decision.
Refusals by Citizenship Judges
Citizenship judges are authorized to refuse applications where the physical presence requirement of 5(1)(c) [prior to June 11, 2015] and 5(1)(c)(i)&(ii) [on or after June 11, 2015] [adult grant] or 11 (1)(d) [resumption] is not met.
Effective June 19, 2017, citizenship judges are authorized to refuse minor 5(1) applicants for:
- Failing to meet the residence requirements which include physical presence