Significant changes to the Citizenship Act

The Honourable Ahmed Hussein, Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, announced the significant changes to the Citizenship Act through the adoption of Bill C-6. The changes take effect on October 11, 2017.

Here are the key changes made to the Citizenship Act:

• Applicants must be physically present in Canada for 3 out of 5 years before applying for citizenship (instead of 4 out of 6);

• Applicants must file Canadian income taxes, if required to do so under the Income Tax Act, for 3 out of 5 years, matching the new physical presence requirement (instead of 4 out of 6);

• Applicants no longer have to meet the requirement of being physically present in Canada for 183 days in four out of the six years preceding their application;

• 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;

• Applicants between 18 and 54 y.o. must meet the language and knowledge requirements for citizenship (instead of 14 to 64 y.o. gap).

For more information regarding the changes, please contact us.