As one might expect when wanting to become a citizen of any country, there are eligibility criteria that must be met in order to qualify. Contact us today at (403) 452-9515 Ext. 100 or 1-800-932-1190 or email us directly.
Canadian Citizenship Application Requirements
On June 19, 2017, Canada’s Parliament passed Bill C-6, which introduced changes to the Canadian Citizenship Act. These changes are slowly being implemented in stages. On October 11, 2017, the first phase of changes was implemented to the Citizenship Act, which streamlines the process for Permanent Residents to become Canadian Citizens as outlined by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC):
- Being of the proper age - You must be 18 or older. Anyone under 18 must have an application made for the minor by a parent or guardian. The minor must already be a permanent resident of Canada.
- Must have permanent residence status – This is the first step to becoming a Canadian citizen; you must have already obtained permanent residence status.
- Time in Canada - To be eligible for citizenship in Canada, the Applicant must have been in Canada (i.e. physically present) for at least 1,095 days within the last three (3) years out of five (5).
- A portion of time spent as a temporary foreign worker or student before becoming a Canadian Permanent Resident will now be counted toward residency requirements, which will give credit to temporary workers and students.
- Income tax compliance - Only those who can demonstrate that they have met personal income tax filing requirements for three years within the five years before the application may qualify for citizenship.
- Show intent to reside in Canada - Declaring your intent to reside is mandatory and means that you will live in Canada.
- Pass language criteria - Applicants aged 18 - 54 years must be proficient in one of the two official languages - either French or English. Specific levels of skill apply and a formal test is given to allow the applicant to demonstrate proficiency.
- You do not have prohibitions against you - Crimes committed outside or inside of Canada may negate your ability to become a citizen.
These criteria must all be met prior to filing your citizenship application. If you have served in the Canadian Armed Forces, the “fast track process” may be more appropriate for you. There are two standard application kits - those for Adults and those for Minors. Adults can apply for their children at the same time they apply for their own citizenship.
All applications require the submission of various supporting documents and fees. Fees are payable only in Canadian funds and may be submitted via the online option or at specific financial institutions. After you apply, you will be contacted in order to take the formal Citizenship Test.
IRCC requires that if you are between 18 and 54 years of age when you apply for citizenship, you must take the citizenship test. All the test questions are based on what’s in the Discover Canada Guide. Applicants must study this guide in order to prepare for the test. The guide is available in both English and French. The time and place of the test is provided once the application is processed and you learn the results immediately after completing the test.
Passing the citizenship test is the final step to allow you to receive a ceremony date. You will take the Oath of Citizenship and become a full citizen at the Citizenship Ceremony. If you do not pass, you are able to take a second test at a later time.
As you might guess, there is a great deal involved, and it is always best that you speak with an immigration expert if you have concerns about your citizenship application in Canada.
Contact us today at (403) 452-9515 Ext. 100 or 1-800-932-1190 or email us directly.