Canadian laws have specific eligibility requirements which a person needs to meet before they can apply for Canadian citizenship.

Eligibility Criteria for Canadian Citizenship

As of November 2017, an application for citizenship in Canada needs to include:

  • Demonstrate language proficiency in either one of two of Canada’s official languages-French or English
  • Possess Permanent Residency (PR) in Canada
  • Should meet the residency requirement of living in Canada as a permanent resident for a minimum of 1095 days out of the five years, before the date of application
  • Should have filed taxes for a minimum of three years out of the last five years from the date of application and not owe any income tax.

An application for citizenship can be returned by IRCC if any of the requirements mentioned above are not successfully met.

Additional Requirements

Applicants in the age group of 18-54 years need to pass citizenship and a language test additionally. The citizenship test requires a decent knowledge of the history, politics, and geography of Canada. The language test needs an applicant to demonstrate effective communication skills in either one of Canada’s two official languages-French or English.

In the citizenship application, there has to be a declaration by applicants explicitly stating their intent to reside in Canada, after the citizenship is granted.

Recently, the federal government has allowed adding half days of residing in Canada while the applicants were Temporary residents, to be counted towards the total residency requirement, with a maximum of 365 days.

For any child under the age of 18, the residency requirement does not apply. This rule is applicable to children who have at least one parent who is a Canadian citizen or has met the residency requirement while applying for Canadian citizenship.

We understand that every client has a unique situation and our dedicated immigration lawyers and consultants develop a personalized way forward for each client.


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