Citizenship Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-29)

Act current to 2017-10-13 and last amended on 2017-10-11. Previous Versions

Marginal note:Adoptees — minors
  •  (1) Subject to subsections (3) and (4), the Minister shall, on application, grant citizenship to a person who, while a minor child, was adopted by a citizen on or after January 1, 1947, was adopted before that day by a person who became a citizen on that day, or was adopted before April 1, 1949 by a person who became a citizen on that later day further to the union of Newfoundland and Labrador with Canada, if the adoption

    • (a) was in the best interests of the child;

    • (b) created a genuine relationship of parent and child;

    • (c) was in accordance with the laws of the place where the adoption took place and the laws of the country of residence of the adopting citizen;

    • (c.1) did not occur in a manner that circumvented the legal requirements for international adoptions; and

    • (d) was not entered into primarily for the purpose of acquiring a status or privilege in relation to immigration or citizenship.

  • Marginal note:Adoptees — adults

    (2) Subject to subsections (3) and (4), the Minister shall, on application, grant citizenship to a person who, while at least 18 years of age, was adopted by a citizen on or after January 1, 1947, was adopted before that day by a person who became a citizen on that day, or was adopted before April 1, 1949 by a person who became a citizen on that later day further to the union of Newfoundland and Labrador with Canada, if

    • (a) there was a genuine relationship of parent and child between the person and the adoptive parent before the person attained the age of 18 years and at the time of the adoption; and

    • (b) the adoption meets the requirements set out in paragraphs (1)(c) to (d).

  • Marginal note:Quebec adoptions

    (3) Subject to subsection (4), the Minister shall, on application, grant citizenship to a person in respect of whose adoption, by a citizen who is subject to Quebec law governing adoptions, a decision was made abroad on or after January 1, 1947 — or to a person in respect of whose adoption, by a person who became a citizen on that day and who is subject to Quebec law governing adoptions, a decision was made abroad before that day — if

    • (a) the Quebec authority responsible for international adoptions advises, in writing, that in its opinion the adoption meets the requirements of Quebec law governing adoptions; and

    • (b) the adoption was not entered into primarily for the purpose of acquiring a status or privilege in relation to immigration or citizenship.

  • Marginal note:Not applicable — after first generation

    (4) No person who is adopted may be granted citizenship under any of subsections (1) to (3)

    • (a) if, at the time of his or her adoption, only one of the adoptive parents was a citizen and that parent was a citizen under paragraph 3(1)(b), (c.1), (e), (g), (h), (o), (p), (q) or (r), or both of the adoptive parents were citizens under any of those paragraphs;

    • (a.1) if the person was adopted before January 1, 1947 and, on that day, only one of the adoptive parents was a citizen and that parent was a citizen under paragraph 3(1)(o) or (q), or both of the adoptive parents were citizens under either of those paragraphs;

    • (a.2) if the person was adopted before April 1, 1949 and, on that day, only one of the adoptive parents was a citizen and that parent was a citizen under paragraph 3(1)(p) or (r), or both of the adoptive parents were citizens under either of those paragraphs; or

    • (b) if, at any time, only one of the adoptive parents was a citizen and that parent was a citizen under any of the provisions referred to in subparagraphs 3(3)(b)(i) to (viii), or both of the adoptive parents were citizens under any of those provisions.

  • Marginal note:Exception — child or grandchild of person in service abroad

    (5) Subsection (4) does not apply to a person who was

    • (a) adopted by a parent who, at the time of the person’s adoption, was employed outside Canada in or with the Canadian Armed Forces, the federal public administration or the public service of a province, otherwise than as a locally engaged person;

    • (b) adopted by a parent one or both of whose parents, at the time of that parent’s birth, were employed outside Canada in or with the Canadian Armed Forces, the federal public administration or the public service of a province, otherwise than as a locally engaged person; or

    • (c) adopted by a parent one or both of whose adoptive parents, at the time of that parent’s adoption, were employed outside Canada in or with the Canadian Armed Forces, the federal public administration or the public service of a province, otherwise than as a locally engaged person.

  • Marginal note:Exception — Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador

    (6) Paragraphs 5.1(4)(a) and (a.1) do not apply to a person who is adopted before April 1, 1949 if

    • (a) only one adoptive parent was a citizen at the time of the adoption, in the case of paragraph (a), or was a citizen on January 1, 1947, in the case of paragraph (a.1); and

    • (b) the other adoptive parent became a citizen on April 1, 1949 further to the union of Newfoundland and Labrador with Canada, other than under paragraph 3(1)(p) or (r).

  • 2007, c. 24, s. 2;
  • 2008, c. 14, s. 13;
  • 2014, c. 22, s. 4.
Marginal note:Citizenship by way of grant under section 5.1 — grandchild of person in service abroad

 A person born outside Canada who was adopted by a parent referred to in paragraph (a) or (b) and who is either a citizen under prior legislation or the former Act — other than under any provision referred to in any of subparagraphs 3(3)(b)(i) to (viii) — or was granted citizenship under paragraph 5(2)(a) of this Act, as it read before April 17, 2009, or under subsection 5(1), (2), or (4) or 11(1) of this Act is deemed, as of the coming into force of this section, to have been granted citizenship under section 5.1:

  • (a) a parent one or both of whose parents, at the time of that parent’s birth, were employed outside Canada in or with the Canadian Armed Forces, the federal public administration or the public service of a province, otherwise than as a locally engaged person; or

  • (b) a parent one or both of whose adoptive parents, at the time of that parent’s adoption, were employed outside Canada in or with the Canadian Armed Forces, the federal public administration or the public service of a province, otherwise than as a locally engaged person.

  • 2014, c. 22, s. 5.
Marginal note:Rights and obligations

 A citizen, whether or not born in Canada, is entitled to all rights, powers and privileges and is subject to all obligations, duties and liabilities to which a person who is a citizen under paragraph 3(1)(a) is entitled or subject and has a like status to that of such person.

  • 1974-75-76, c. 108, s. 5.

PART IILoss of Citizenship

Marginal note:No loss except as provided

 A person who is a citizen shall not cease to be a citizen except in accordance with this Part or regulations made under paragraph 27(1)(j.1).

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-29, s. 7;
  • 2008, c. 14, s. 5;
  • 2014, c. 22, s. 6.

 [Repealed, 2008, c. 14, s. 6]

Marginal note:Renunciation of citizenship
  •  (1) Subject to subsection (2.1), a citizen may, on application, renounce his citizenship if he

    • (a) is a citizen of a country other than Canada or, if his application is accepted, will become a citizen of a country other than Canada;

    • (b) is not the subject of a declaration by the Governor in Council made pursuant to section 20;

    • (c) is not a minor;

    • (d) is not prevented from understanding the significance of renouncing citizenship by reason of the person having a mental disability; and

    • (e) does not reside in Canada.

  • Marginal note:Ministerial discretion to waive requirements

    (2) The Minister may, in the Minister’s discretion, waive on compassionate grounds the requirements of paragraph (1)(d) or (e).

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (2.1) No application for renunciation may be made if the Minister has provided the applicant with a notice referred to in subsection 10(3) or has commenced an action under subsection 10.1(1) for a declaration in respect of the applicant until the Minister provides the applicant with his or her decision under subsection 10(5) or a final judgment has been rendered in that action, as the case may be.

  • Marginal note:Processing of application suspended

    (2.2) If an application for renunciation is made and the Minister subsequently provides the applicant with a notice referred to in subsection 10(3) or commences an action under subsection 10.1(1) for a declaration in respect of the applicant, the processing of that application is suspended until the Minister provides the applicant with his or her decision under subsection 10(5) or a final judgment has been rendered in that action, as the case may be.

  • Marginal note:Certificate of renunciation

    (3) If an application under subsection (1) is approved by the Minister, the Minister shall issue a certificate of renunciation to the applicant and the applicant ceases to be a citizen after the expiration of the day on which the certificate is issued or any later day that the certificate may specify.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-29, s. 9;
  • 1992, c. 21, s. 8;
  • 2014, c. 22, s. 7;
  • 2017, c. 14, s. 2.
 
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