Amendment in Canadian Citizenship Act – 13 different changes you should know

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June 19, 2017 – The long-awaited Bill C-6 received Royal Assent today. There are 13 different changes in Citizenship Act with Bill C-6 Amendments:

Immediate changes upon Royal Assent on June 19, 2017
  1. Dual citizens living in Canada convicted of treason, spying, and terrorism offenses will face the Canadian justice system; like other Canadian citizens who break the law. Previously, the citizenship could be revoked.
  2. Citizenship applicants no longer have to intend to live in Canada once granted citizenship.
  3. Minors can now apply for citizenship without a Canadian parent. A person with custody of the minor can apply on their behalf; unless waived by the Minister.
  4. Individuals serving a conditional sentence will not be granted citizenship. They also cannot take the Oath of Citizenship, nor count this time towards meeting the physical presence requirements for citizenship.
  5. Statelessness has been added as a stand-alone ground that can be considered for a discretionary grant of citizenship.
  6. For disabled citizenship applicants, reasonable measures will now be taken to accommodate them.
Changes expected to take effect in fall 2017
  1. Applicants must be physically present in Canada for three out of five years before applying for citizenship.
  2. They must also fill Canadian income taxes; to match the new physical presence requirement.
  3. Applicants do not need to be physically present in Canada for 183 days, in four out of the six years preceding their application.
  4. Temporary residents or protected persons may count each day they were physically present in Canada before becoming a permanent resident as a half-day toward meeting the physical presence requirement for citizenship. This can be up to a maximum of 365 days.
  5. Ages between 18 and 54 must meet the citizenship language and knowledge requirements.
Changes expected to take effect in early 2018
  1. The Federal Court makes all decisions in revocation cases; unless the individual requests that the Minister make the decision.
  2. Citizenship Officers can seize fraudulent or suspected fraudulent documents provided under the Citizenship Act.

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