Along with having a wealth of natural resources and a reputation for being one of the friendliest nations in the world, Canada offers breathtaking natural beauty. What truly makes Canada unique, though, is its dedication to accepting immigrants worldwide and giving them a route to citizenship.

Whether you’re new to the country or a longtime resident hoping to make the next move, this blog will provide you with all the information you need to join Canada’s lively and varied community and become a citizen.

Canadian Citizenship — What it Entails

For many people worldwide, having Canadian citizenship is a highly desirable status with many benefits. A person’s quality of life can be greatly improved by holding Canadian citizenship, which offers a wide range of advantages, from the ability to vote and run for office to access to healthcare and education.

Some of the numerous benefits of becoming a Canadian citizen are as follows:

  • With a Canadian passport, citizens have the freedom to travel to over 180 countries visa-free or with a visa on arrival.
  • Canadian citizens are entitled to cast ballots for federal, provincial, and local elections.
  • Canadians have access to free or subsidized healthcare through the government-funded healthcare system.
  • Citizens of Canada are able to work in any industry or area and have access to a vast array of career options.
  • Reuniting with loved ones is made possible for qualified family members of Canadian citizens by sponsoring them to immigrate to Canada and become citizens or permanent residents.

Obtaining Canadian Citizenship — The Main Routes

  • By Birth: Canada is one of the few countries in the world that still adheres to the notion of jus soli, a Latin word that means “right of soil.” This concept states that everyone born in Canada automatically becomes a citizen of Canada by virtue of their birth. This is a distinctive aspect of Canadian citizenship legislation, sometimes known as birthright citizenship. It should be highlighted that people born to foreign diplomats or others exempt from Canadian law are not covered by this principle. 
  • By Descent: People born outside of Canada to at least one citizen parent are eligible to become citizens of Canada by descent. The following conditions must be satisfied in order for candidates to be eligible for Canadian citizenship by descent:

The applicant must present documentation attesting to the citizenship of at least one parent when the applicant was born in Canada.

The candidate must complete all extra conditions for citizenship applications, including language competency and criminal background checks, and they cannot have renounced their Canadian citizenship before.
It is important to remember that obtaining Canadian citizenship by ancestry is only possible for parents; those who are Canadians by descent are not eligible to acquire citizenship from their parents.

  • By Naturalization: The procedure of becoming a citizen of Canada by naturalization is available to qualifying permanent residents. Candidates must fulfill a number of conditions in order to be eligible, such as passing a citizenship exam, meeting residency and stay restrictions, and meeting language requirements. A number of papers must be submitted as part of the procedure, including tax records, language competency certifications, and confirmation of permanent resident status. The processing period begins once the application is received and often lasts for a year.

Let’s look at the residency requirements:

  • In order to qualify for naturalization and get Canadian citizenship, candidates must have spent a minimum of three years (1,095 days) physically present in Canada within the five years before the application date.
  • Since English and French are Canada’s two official languages, it is essential that everyone applying for citizenship between the ages of 18 and 54 be able to speak one of these languages fluently.
  • People between the ages of 18 and 54 must take the citizenship exam to apply for Canadian citizenship. The test assesses the applicant’s understanding of Canada’s rights, obligations, and history.
  • It could be necessary for you to have filed your taxes in Canada for at least three of the five years before the application date. 

Applying for a Canadian Passport

One of the strongest passports in the world, the Canadian passport enables holders to visit more than 180 countries visa-free. In order to apply for a Canadian passport, you have to fulfill specified requirements, adhere to a few stages, and submit certain papers.

Conditions:

  • You have to be a citizen of Canada.
  • There cannot be any travel restrictions on you.

Steps for Application:

  • Complete the application form at a passport office in person or online.
  • Make the necessary payment. 
  • Send in the application and any necessary supporting documentation.
  • Await the processing period, which for a conventional application takes 20 business days and for an urgent application, 10 business days.

Conclusion

In the end, the many benefits of becoming a Canadian citizen, including unlimited employment and residency in Canada, healthcare, education, and social services, make it extremely attractive. There are several ways to become a citizen of Canada, but they are all subject to certain limitations, such as completing language competency and residence requirements. 

While the process might be complicated, the assistance of immigration lawyers in Scarborough may prove crucial. As you begin your journey towards Canadian citizenship, having a skilled and experienced ally like Kurzfeld Law may make all the difference in making your goal a reality. Our legal experts can provide you with individualized counsel and make sure to satisfy all standards since they have the necessary experience navigating the complex Canadian immigration procedure.