Who Is Eligible?
Individuals of any age, regardless of Canadian parentage, can apply for citizenship provided they meet the general requirements below.
What Are the Physical Presence Requirements?
To be eligible to apply for Canadian Citizenship, an applicant must have resided in Canada for 3 out of the past 5 years immediately prior to their application. Of note, applicants may now count each day that they were 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.
Children under the age of 18 are not required to meet the residency requirement if they have one parent who is either a Canadian citizen or who is applying to become a Canadian citizen and has met the requirement themselves.
What Else Is Required?
In addition to the above time requirements, applicants must have met their personal income tax obligations in the three relevant years in the five-year time frame.
Further, applicants between the ages of 18 and 54 are required to pass both a language and citizenship test. As part of the language test, applicants must show that they can effectively communicate in one of Canada’s two official languages; English or French. The citizenship test requires sufficient knowledge about Canada’s history, geography and political system.
Applicants will also need to declare an intent to reside in Canada during the citizenship application process. Recent federal amendments no longer require the intention to live in Canada or under another approved arrangement as part of the application once granted citizenship.
It is important to note that every case is different, and an individual’s unique circumstances or previous history may affect their ability to apply for Canadian Citizenship. Green and Spiegel LLP has helped thousands of individuals and their families apply for and acquire Canadian Citizenship. Contact us today to book a consultation to assess your particular circumstances.