As a Canadian citizen, you will enjoy many rights, but you will also have responsibilities. you must obey Canada’s laws and respect the rights and freedoms of others.

In order to be eligible to become a Canadian citizen, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Age
  • Permanent resident status,
  • Time you have lived in Canada (residence),
  • Income tax filing,
  • Intent to reside,
  • Language skills,
  • How well you know Canada, and
  • Prohibitions.
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Age

To apply for citizenship, you must be at least 18 years of age. If you are under 18, the application has to be made by either your parent, adoptive parent or a legal guardian. You must also be a permanent resident. In addition to the above, one of your parents must also be a Canadian citizen or apply to become a citizen at the same time. (this also applies to adoptive parents).

Permanent resident status

To be eligible to apply for citizenship, you must be a permanent resident of Canada. Your permanent resident status must not be in question or under any conditions such as the following:

  • Be under review for immigration or fraud reasons, or
  • Be under a removal order (an order from Canadian officials to leave Canada), or
  • Have certain unfulfilled conditions related to your PR status.

Time you have lived in Canada

To be eligible to apply for citizenship, you must fulfill your residency requirement. You have to be physically present in Canada as a permanent resident for at least 1,460 days (four years) in the last six years before the date of your application. For each of the four years, you must also be physically present in Canada for at least 183 days. These requirements do not apply to children under 18.

Exceptions to these requirements apply for certain Crown servants and certain family members of Crown servants.

Income tax filing

Part of the criteria to be eligible to become a Canadian citizen, you also have to prove that you have file your income tax in the four years out of the six years you have lived in Canada as a permanent resident.

Intent to reside

During the application process, you must declare your intent to reside in Canada. If you live abroad, you must live with family members who are Crown servants; or If you work outside of Canada, you can work as a Crown servant.

Language abilities

If you are 14 to 64 years of age, you must prove that you have the equivalent of Level 4 for speaking and listening in English or French using the Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) or Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadien (NCLC). 

In general, this means you can:

  • Take part in short, everyday conversations about common topics;
  • Understand simple instructions, questions and directions;
  • Use basic grammar, including simple structures and tenses; and
  • Show that you know enough common words and phrases to answer questions and express yourself.

How well you know Canada

If you are between the age of 14 and 64, you are required to take a citizenship test whereby you will need to demonstrate that you have adequate knowledge of Canada and the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship.

To be eligible to become a citizen, you must understand the rights, responsibilities and privileges of citizenship, such as voting in elections and obeying the law. You must also show, in English or French, that you understand Canada’s:

  • History
  • Values
  • Institutions and
  • Symbols

Prohibitions

You may not be eligible to become a Canadian citizen if you have committed a crime in Canada or abroad. For example, if you:

  • Are in prison, on parole or on probation in Canada, or are serving a sentence outside Canada,
  • Have been convicted of an indictable offence in Canada or an offence outside Canada in the four years before applying for citizenship, or
  • Are charged with, on trial for, or involved in an appeal of an indictable offence in Canada, or an offence outside Canada.

Time in prison or on parole does not count as time you have lived in Canada. Time on probation also does not count if you were convicted of a crime.

Gathering Necessary Documentation

We are here to help! We’ll guide you to collect and compile every document needed for your application. Without a well prepared application and needed supporting documents, the processing of your application would not only be delayed, it could even be refused.