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Politics Citizenship calculator: Compare Ottawa’s old and new math on when you can become Canadian

Citizenship

Citizenship calculator: Compare Ottawa's old and new math on when you can become Canadian

Are you a permanent resident who's applying or wants to apply for citizenship? Here's what your timetable would be under the existing rules and the new ones that would take effect under the Liberals' Bill C-6, which is making its way through the Senate

Do the math

Bill C-6, the federal Liberals' overhaul of the Citizenship Act, has been working its way through the legislature for nearly a year, and is now at third reading in the Senate. It has far-reaching consequences for permanent residents who want to become citizens, because it aims to streamline the process by reducing the amount of time they have to live in Canada first. Under the old rules, permanent residents had to be physically in Canada for at least 1,460 days in the six years before their application; the new rules change that to 1,095 days in five years. It also loosens the limits on how many days permanent residents can be out of the country in a given calendar year.

Do I qualify?

To become citizens, you and your family need to meet the Citizenship Act’s residency requirements, which measure how long you’ve lived in Canada and physically been there. Try our calculator to see how you’d qualify under the current and proposed rules.

When did you first move to Canada?

Please be as specific as possible.

When did you become a permanent resident of Canada?

This date is listed on your Record of Landing, Confirmation of Permanent Residence or your Permanent Resident Card.

How many days in total were you absent from Canada between your arrival date and when you became a permanent resident?

If you don’t know the exact number, a rough estimate is fine.

For each given year, how many days have you been physically absent from Canada?

If you don’t know the exact number, a rough estimate for each year is fine.

Next

Results

The earliest you could apply for citizenship:

Under the current Act

Under the proposed amendments

Note: This calculator is not designed as a replacement for Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s physical presence calculator. As such, your estimated citizenship application date might not be exact due to leap years, time spent serving a sentence for an offence in Canada, or other factors. This calculator also assumes that you are not absent from Canada in future years.


The background

Justin Trudeau's Liberals came to power promising to undo controversial changes to citizenship laws made by the previous Conservative government.

The big-ticket issues have to do with which dual citizens the government can strip citizenship from if they're convicted as terrorists or spies, which the Tories' Bill C-24 allowed Ottawa to do without the need for a hearing. C-6 aims to remove those powers, and a Senate amendment also seeks to limit the government's power to take citizenship from people deemed to have misrepresented themselves in the application process.

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When do these changes take effect?

Bill C-6 has been working its way through the legislature since last February, and progress has been slow in the Senate, where it had its first reading last June. Once the amendments to C-6 are approved and it passes third reading, the bill will be ready to become law.


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