The Canadian Citizenship Act was changed in June, 2017. Under the amended act, applicants must be physically present in Canada for at least 1,095 days (three years) during the five years before the date of the application.

However, please note that the previous residency requirement of 1,460 days (four years) during the six years before the date of application remains in effect until fall/autumn 2017, when the 1,095-day rule expected to come into effect.

To learn more about eligibility for citizenship, please refer to this page.

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Recent changes mean that you may be able to apply for Canadian citizenship sooner than previously.

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Exceptional circumstances

In determining whether exceptional circumstances exist, Canadian citizenship judges examine the specific facts and circumstances of each individual case. Each case must be assessed on its own merits, and Canadian citizenship judges have considerable discretion in determining whether exceptional circumstances truly exist. Thus, it is extremely difficult to pronounce conclusively which circumstances will be deemed to be exceptional.

The following is a list of factors which may, in some cases, lead Canadian citizenship judges to "bend" the 1,095-day rule:

  • The applicant is physically present in Canada for most of the required period other than recent absences that occurred immediately before the application for Canadian citizenship was submitted.
  • Even though the applicant leaves Canada on a regular basis, the applicant's immediate family and dependents continue to live in Canada.
  • The applicant's overall pattern of physical presence in Canada indicates that he or she returns home to Canada, and does not merely "pay a visit" to Canada.
  • Despite repeated absences, the total number of days absent from Canada are relatively few.
  • The physical absence from Canada is caused by a clearly temporary situation such as employment or study abroad for a limited period of time.
  • The quality of the applicant's connection with Canada is more substantial than that which exists with any other country, as reflected by the applicant's involvement in Canadian work and business ventures, community organizations, and payment of Canadian income tax.

 

Contact us with any question(s) concerning Canadian citizenship requirements and applications.

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