Canada is the second largest country in the world after Russia, with huge reserves of natural resources, amazing landscapes, stable economy and high standard of living. In a word, the dream of any immigrant. Canadian citizenship opens wide opportunities for foreigners to integrate into the global world of free movement, economic cooperation and social communications.

Citizenship of Canada

Over the past 25 years, Canada has received about 250,000 immigrants annually. Experts estimate that in recent years this figure has exceeded 300 thousand, averaging more than 800 people per day. In addition, several hundred thousand foreign students study in Canadian universities, and local companies employ over 200 thousand temporary workers.

A significant wave of immigration to Canada is not only due to the quality of life and high social standards. In many respects, this situation is due to the Canadian government's pragmatic and at the same time liberal approach to migrants. The country has effective professional immigration programs aimed at simplifying the procedure of moving to Canada for foreigners whose knowledge and experience is needed by the local economy.

Of course, there are difficulties, but nevertheless it is much easier to stay and eventually obtain citizenship in Canada compared to many European countries.

Benefits of Canadian citizenship

  • The right to vote in any federal, provincial or municipal election and to stand as a candidate.

  • Staying outside of Canada for an unlimited period of time without risking loss of citizenship. For example, permanent residents must stay in the country for at least 2 years within 5 years to avoid losing this status.

  • Better job prospects in Canada, including government jobs that only Canadians can apply for.

  • Visa-free or simplified entry to most countries in the world and other benefits. For example, eligibility for employment in the U.S. under special programs between countries.

  • The ability to secure Canadian citizenship for a child born outside of Canadian territory.

IMPORTANT. In Canada, it is allowed to have dual citizenship without any restrictions.

How to obtain Canadian citizenship

The rules and conditions for obtaining a Canadian passport are regulated by the local law "On Citizenship". The document is periodically amended, so even before you start the procedure of obtaining Canadian citizenship, this should be taken into account and use only up-to-date information. The latest changes are dated October 11, 2017.

In particular, the period of continuous residence in the country was reduced from 4 out of 6 years to 3 out of 5 and the age range for language proficiency testing from 14-64 to 18-54 years. In addition, the requirement of mandatory physical presence in Canada for a minimum of 183 days in each of the four years was canceled.

Ways and features of obtaining Canadian citizenship

How to obtain Canadian citizenship

The most realistic way to obtain Canadian citizenship is to undergo the naturalization procedure, where one of the main conditions is to have the status of permanent resident and physical residence in the country for a certain amount of time – 3 years out of the last 5. There are different options for residency. The most common are family ties, work and business in Canada.

Canadian citizenship by birth is granted in the following cases:

  • birth within Canada;

  • birth abroad if at least one parent has a Canadian passport.

Marriage to a Canadian citizen gives the foreigner absolutely no advantages when applying for a Canadian passport. The only advantage is the possibility to move to the country under the family reunification program and on this basis to obtain permanent residence, which is required for further citizenship.

Requirements for foreigners to become Canadian citizens

  1. Must be of legal age (18 years old).

  2. Permanent resident status. A foreigner is issued a special plastic card that certifies his/her identity and allows him/her to carry out professional activities and reside freely in Canada. It is usually issued for 5 years with the right to renew.

  3. Residence directly in Canada for at least 3 years in the last 5 years in permanent resident status at the time of application for citizenship. Note that study in Canada or temporary employment does not provide for permanent residence.

  4. No outstanding tax liabilities and no income tax returns filed in the last 3 years.

  5. Basic level of proficiency in one of the official languages – English or French. Partially this condition is checked during the interview and is also confirmed by one of the numerous language certificates, for example, IELTS. The requirement applies to every applicant for citizenship between the ages of 18 and 54.

  6. Knowledge of basic facts about the history of Canada, some laws, rights and duties of a citizen. A special written test is provided for this purpose. Each applicant is given a study guide with detailed information beforehand, so there should be no difficulty in passing the test.

Who is denied Canadian citizenship?

  • People who are serving a prison sentence or under investigation in any country;

  • Persons who have been convicted of a crime and sentenced within the last 4 years before applying for citizenship;

  • Persons who have been refused a passport within the last 5 years as a result of providing false information;

  • Persons who have had their Canadian citizenship revoked in the last 10 years due to any illegal actions.

Canadian citizenship procedure

Canadian citizenship procedure

If the mandatory requirements and conditions for obtaining Canadian citizenship described above are met, you can safely collect documents and apply. This is done through the official website of the Canadian government – All procedural aspects related to obtaining citizenship and immigration to Canada in general are described here in maximum detail.

IMPORTANT. The total official cost of Canadian citizenship is 630 Canadian dollars.

There are no specific deadlines for processing applications for Canadian citizenship. In any case, the foreigner will receive special notifications on the acceptance of the application, in addition, you can control the process on the website. After the processing of documents, an invitation to undergo testing is sent, with a detailed indication of the date and place. Within 6 months after the testing and interview the final stage follows – a solemn ceremony of taking the oath and awarding the certificate of Canadian citizenship.

The biggest difficulty in applying for a Canadian passport for foreigners is the mandatory permanent resident status in Canada. Each type of immigration provides certain requirements and conditions.

Carefully study the available employment programs, in particular, Federal Skilled Worker, Canadian Experience Class and Federal Skilled Trades. Investors must have an impressive amount of funds – from 125 thousand dollars and above. In the case of family reunification, there is such a term as sponsorship. That is, the ability to ensure that your loved ones live in Canada.

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