Changes to the Citizenship Act

Thursday, October 5, 2017

On October 11, 2017 several changes to the Citizenship Act will come into effect that will make it easier for permanent residents and protected persons to become citizens.

The new requirements include that:

  • You must be physically present in Canada for 3 out of 5 years before applying for citizenship. You must also file your income tax for those years. The previous residency requirement was 4 out of 6 years.
  • If you are between 18 and 54, you must meet the language and knowledge requirements for citizenship. The previous requirement was for people aged 14 to 64.
  • If you have spent time in Canada as a temporary resident or protected person, you can count each of those days as a half day towards your residency requirements. Previously, you could only count the time you spent in Canada as a permanent resident.

For a full description of the new rules, see the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website. You can learn more about Canadian Citizenship on Settlement.Org or