Tempting… but don’t do it

September 24th, 2009

Some immigration consultants in Montreal are helping landed immigrants bypass the residency requirements for Canadian citizenship, by offering “life in Canada simulation” services, according to an investigation by the CBC, Canada’s national news network.

In order to qualify for Canadian citizenship, a landed immigrant (permanent resident) must spend the better part of three years in Canada within a four-year period. Almost all permanent residents want to become Canadian citizens and obtain a Canadian passport. The problem, though, is that not everyone is willing or able to spend the requisite time in Canada in order to qualify, and a small percentage (one hopes) of these individuals is seeking out shortcuts to Canadian citizenship.

There are so-called “consultants” out there, who, for a fee of between $4,000 and $6,000 will make it appear as if a permanent resident has been physically present in Canada for three years when in fact, the landed immigrant has been residing outside of Canada’s borders. The consultants provide phoney apartment leases for their clients and even bogus school registrations for their children. They pick up mail, pay bills and do all sorts of things on their clients’ behalf that would give the impression of Canadian residency. At the end of three years their clients submit falsified applications for Canadian citizenship, in which they indicate that they have been physically present in Canada for three years. These applicants usually obtain fresh passports from their home country just prior to the Canadian citizenship process and submit copies of same to Canadian authorities in an effort to hide their previous travel outside Canada.

Does this type of deception work?

Yes, I’m sure that it sometimes does.

Should people do it if they are unwilling to spend three years in Canada?

The simple answer is “no,” because it’s illegal and immoral.

In addition, anyone contemplating this fraudulent activity should realize that they will not have a “peaceful night’s sleep” after they have obtained Canadian citizenship. The consultants who perform these services don’t only do so for one individual. Sooner or later, one of their clients will probably get caught and then confess the name of the consultant. From there it is an easy task to determine the names of the other individuals who retained that consultant’s services. The end result will be the loss of Canadian citizenship and removal from Canada for anyone who was involved.

It’s simply not worth it.

Better to comply with the more accommodating residency obligations for maintaining status as a permanent resident until such time as you are willing to physically reside in Canada for a good portion of your time.

Previous Blog : The Pot Calling the Kettle Black
Next Blog : Think you don’t qualify? Think again

6 Responses to “Tempting… but don’t do it”

  • On September 25th, 2009, Pingaustin said ...

    I always wonder why human beings don't like to have a 'home'.
    The whole purpose of granting people citizenship and naturalisation is to have them settle in their newly adopted home, but it's ever so difficult to disconnect from the place where we were 'runnin' from. Even if they are not running, I wonder if people ever ask themselves the question as to whey they wanted to acquire the citizenship of another country. For me, if i want to get citizenship of a country, it means i'm ready to make the country my home, so i wont be found wandering the world when i should be in Canada.

  • On September 29th, 2009, Ziad Haddad said ...

    So far, I haven't read or was informed about, and never came to my knowledge of any substantial difference between a permanent resident status and a citizenship status other than the following two:
    First that the first can not elect in any governmental official elections however the latter may do so freely and second that the latter may not need to be present in Canada for a long period of time to keep his citizenship, yet the first may lose his permanent resident status if he stays abroad in some cases.

    Both scenarios are not worth being illegal. One can stay with out participating in politics for ever, thus no need to participate in elections, in addition; being a citizen, yet residing outside Canada, does not have much benefits as it used to be probably twenty to thirty years ago, only may be with what is related to having the peace of mind of being able to go "home" during any crisis abroad. But what is the definition of home for those who were able to illegally obtain the citizenship, yet residing outside with out having any social activity in Canada? Home is where we work, live, and contribute to the community around, unless I am not aware of a brand new definition.
    Indeed it is not worth it.

    One question though that should come to the mind of the Government; with these huge databases now available, and with this advancement of technology, how come that the Canadian Government would not be able to retrieve the last date of departure of any phony applicant.

    The new US regulations after Sep. the 11th 2001 put on the international passenger leaving the US boarder the responsibility to report himself to the authorities and endorse his passport upon departure, and not get satisfied with returning to the airline the left over part of his permission to stay given to him upon arrival, thus an endorsement of passport and registration for departing passengers became mandatory.

  • On October 1st, 2009, Arun said ...

    If I want a home this must allow me to sleep well.The requirement for three year is basically , as I understand,to get oneself adapted with changes in lifestyle,environment etc., In fact one should necessarily go through this procedure . Otherwise , there is no point in changing home which remain unknown forever and used as a crisis contigency only .

  • On October 28th, 2009, BHAVIKKUMAR DHADUK said ...

    For CIC, it is not difficult to trace if any PR has moved out of Canada for certain period of time. From Airport Authorities, all records can easily be obtained if anybody has traveled out of Canada. So, despite submitting fresh passport (obtained from home country after canceling old passport) to CIC while applying for Citizenship, the above tracing can easily reveal travel records. I really wonder how could CIC issue citizenship without checking actual resident status & travel records of any applicant !!

  • On October 30th, 2009, AAUN said ...

    though i have non of the current canadian status but just a simple suggestion that the canadian govt can make it mandatory that an immigrant has to report to the local canadain consulate of the country he is travelling to for endorsement within 30 days of travel and impose a heavy auto fine / tax or cancellation of the immigration status incase the individual does not comply. This would atleast help sustain the canadian society values of truth and dignity.


  • On October 29th, 2010, Anonymous said ...

    I am a Canadian citizen working overseas, and have co-worker who is also a Canadian citizen, but he got his citizenship through such consultants. This person keeps bragging that he and his family became citizens and did not have to live in Canada more than accumulated period of 6 months, and that he receives family payments from the government, which as a taxpayer bothers me because a portion of my taxes is been paid to likes of him. Not only that, but he also assisting and encouraging other immigrants to do what he did. At times, I am tempted to report him to the appropriate authorities.


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