From October 11, 2017 on wards permanent residents of Canada will find it easier to obtain the Canadian citizenship. The Bill C-6 which was passed into law last June has now come into implementation. This means that the process much popularly known as naturalization will become easier and shall involve a quicker process than before. Before this bill, permanent residents have to wait for four years of residency in order to apply. But now, permanent residents with three years of residency out of five can apply for Citizenship.
Moreover, permanent residents who spent time in Canada as a foreign worker, international student, or protected person before transitioning to permanent residence may count a portion of this time towards the residency days requirement, where each day spent in Canada on temporary status counts as half a day, up to a maximum of 365 days. In addition, as of October 11 the government no longer requires applicants for citizenship to be physically present in Canada for 183 days or more in four out of the six years preceding their application, as was the case before.
Addressing to this improvement at Brampton, Ontario, Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussein said:
“We want all permanent residents in Canada to become citizens. That’s our wish, because we value Canadian citizenship, we understand we are a community that continues to welcome people from all over the world. And we understand the importance and the positive role that immigrants play in our economy, in our society, and in our cultural life.”
|PREVIOUS REGULATION||NEW REGULATION|
|Applicants had to be physically present in Canada for four out of six years before applying for citizenship.||Applicants must be physically present in Canada for three out of five years before applying for citizenship.|
|Applicants had to file Canadian income taxes, if required to do so under the Income Tax Act, for four out of six years, matching the physical presence requirement.||Applicants must file Canadian income taxes, if required to do so under the Income Tax Act, for three out of five years, matching the new physical presence requirement.|
|Applicants had to be physically present in Canada for 183 days in four out of the six years preceding their application.||This provision is repealed. Applicants no longer have to meet this requirement.|
|Time spent in Canada prior to becoming a permanent resident did not count towards the physical presence requirement for citizenship.||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 14 and 64 years had to meet the language and knowledge requirements for citizenship.||Applicants between 18 and 54 years must meet the language and knowledge requirements for citizenship.|
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