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

Full Document:  

Act current to 2021-11-17 and last amended on 2021-06-22. Previous Versions

PART IThe Right to Citizenship (continued)

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 [Repealed, 2008, c. 14, s. 6]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

Marginal note:Revocation by Minister — fraud, false representation, etc.

  •  (1) Subject to subsection 10.1(1), the Minister may revoke a person’s citizenship or renunciation of citizenship if the Minister is satisfied on a balance of probabilities that the person has obtained, retained, renounced or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances.

  • (2) [Repealed, 2017, c. 14, s. 3]

  • Marginal note:Notice

    (3) Before a person’s citizenship or renunciation of citizenship may be revoked, the Minister shall provide the person with a written notice that

    • (a) advises the person of his or her right to make written representations;

    • (b) specifies the form and manner in which the representations must be made;

    • (c) sets out the specific grounds and reasons, including reference to materials, on which the Minister is relying to make his or her decision; and

    • (d) advises the person that the case will be referred to the Court unless the person requests that the case be decided by the Minister.

  • Marginal note:Representations and request for decision by Minister

    (3.1) The person may, within 60 days after the day on which the notice is sent, or within any extended time that the Minister may allow for special reasons,

    • (a) make written representations with respect to the matters set out in the notice, including any considerations respecting his or her personal circumstances — such as the best interests of a child directly affected — that warrant special relief in light of all the circumstances of the case and whether the decision will render the person stateless; and

    • (b) request that the case be decided by the Minister.

  • Marginal note:Consideration of representations

    (3.2) The Minister shall consider any representations received from the person pursuant to paragraph (3.1)(a) before making a decision.

  • Marginal note:Hearing

    (4) A hearing may be held if the Minister, on the basis of prescribed factors, is of the opinion that a hearing is required.

  • Marginal note:Referral to Court

    (4.1) The Minister shall refer the case to the Court under subsection 10.1(1) unless

    • (a) the person has made written representations under paragraph (3.1)(a) and the Minister is satisfied

      • (i) on a balance of probabilities that the person has not obtained, retained, renounced or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances, or

      • (ii) that considerations respecting the person’s personal circumstances warrant special relief in light of all the circumstances of the case; or

    • (b) the person has made a request under paragraph (3.1)(b).

  • Marginal note:Notice of decision

    (5) The Minister shall provide his or her decision to the person in writing.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-29, s. 10
  • 2014, c. 22, s. 8
  • 2017, c. 14, s. 3

Marginal note:Revocation for fraud — declaration of Court

  •  (1) Unless a person makes a request under paragraph 10(3.1)(b), the person’s citizenship or renunciation of citizenship may be revoked only if the Minister seeks a declaration, in an action that the Minister commences, that the person has obtained, retained, renounced or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances and the Court makes such a declaration.

  • (2) [Repealed, 2017, c. 14, s. 4]

  • Marginal note:Effect of declaration

    (3) A declaration made under subsection (1) has the effect of revoking a person’s citizenship or renunciation of citizenship.

  • Marginal note:Proof

    (4) For the purposes of subsection (1), if the Minister seeks a declaration that the person has obtained, retained, renounced or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances, with respect to a fact described in section 34, 35 or 37 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, the Minister need prove only that the person has obtained, retained, renounced or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances.

  • 2014, c. 22, s. 8
  • 2017, c. 14, s. 4

Marginal note:Presumption

 For the purposes of subsections 10(1) and 10.1(1), a person has obtained or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances if the person became a permanent resident, within the meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances and, because of having acquired that status, the person subsequently obtained or resumed citizenship.

  • 2014, c. 22, s. 8

 [Repealed, 2017, c. 14, s. 5]

 [Repealed, 2017, c. 14, s. 5]

Marginal note:Inadmissibility

  •  (1) On the request of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, the Minister shall — in the originating document that commences an action under subsection 10.1(1) on the basis that the person obtained, retained, renounced or resumed his or her citizenship by false representation or fraud or by knowingly concealing material circumstances, with respect to a fact described in section 34, 35 or 37 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act other than a fact that is also described in paragraph 36(1)(a) or (b) or (2)(a) or (b) of that Act — seek a declaration that the person who is the subject of the action is inadmissible on security grounds, on grounds of violating human or international rights or on grounds of organized criminality under, respectively, subsection 34(1), paragraph 35(1)(a) or (b) or subsection 37(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

  • Marginal note:Party

    (2) When a declaration is sought under subsection (1), the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness becomes a party to the action commenced under subsection 10.1(1).

  • Marginal note:Removal order

    (3) A declaration that the person is inadmissible on one of the grounds referred to in subsection (1) is a removal order against the person under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that comes into force when it is made, without the necessity of holding or continuing an examination or an admissibility hearing under that Act. The removal order is a deportation order as provided for in regulations made under that Act.

  • Marginal note:Procedure

    (4) If a declaration is sought under subsection (1), the Court shall first hear and decide all matters related to the declaration sought under subsection 10.1(1). If the Court denies the declaration sought under subsection 10.1(1), it shall also deny the declaration sought under subsection (1).

  • Marginal note:Evidence

    (5) If a declaration sought under subsection (1) is not denied under subsection (4), the Court

    • (a) shall assess the facts — whether acts or omissions — alleged in support of the declaration on the basis of reasonable grounds to believe that they have occurred, are occurring or may occur;

    • (b) shall take into account the evidence already admitted by it and consider as conclusive any finding of fact already made by it in support of the declaration sought under subsection 10.1(1); and

    • (c) with respect to any additional evidence, is not bound by any legal or technical rules of evidence and may receive and base its decision on any evidence adduced in the proceedings that it considers credible or trustworthy in the circumstances.

  • Marginal note:Single judgment

    (6) The Court shall issue a single judgment in respect of the declarations sought under subsections (1) and 10.1(1).

  • 2014, c. 22, s. 8
  • 2017, c. 14, s. 5.1

Marginal note:No appeal from interlocutory judgment

 Despite paragraph 27(1)(c) of the Federal Courts Act, no appeal may be made from an interlocutory judgment made with respect to a declaration referred to in subsection 10.1(1) or 10.5(1).

  • 2014, c. 22, s. 8
  • 2017, c. 14, s. 6

Marginal note:No appeal unless question stated

 An appeal to the Federal Court of Appeal may be made from a judgment under section 10.1 or 10.5 only if, in rendering judgment, the judge certifies that a serious question of general importance is involved and states the question.

  • 2014, c. 22, s. 8

PART IIIResumption of Citizenship

Marginal note:Resumption by application

  •  (1) The Minister shall grant citizenship to any person who, having ceased to be a citizen,

    • (a) makes an application for resumption of citizenship;

    • (b) is not the subject of an order made under section 10, as it read immediately before the coming into force of section 8 of the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act, a decision made under section 10, a declaration made under section 10.1 or an order made under section 18 of the former Act;

    • (b.1) is not the subject of a declaration made under section 20;

    • (c) is not under a removal order; and

    • (d) has become a permanent resident within the meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, has, subject to the regulations, no unfulfilled conditions under that Act relating to his or her status as a permanent resident and has, since having ceased to be a citizen and become a permanent resident,

      • (i) been physically present in Canada for at least 365 days during the two years immediately before the date of the application, and

      • (ii) met any applicable requirement under the Income Tax Act to file a return of income in respect of the taxation year immediately before the year in which the application is made.

    • (e) [Repealed, 2017, c. 14, s. 7]

  • Marginal note:Canadian Armed Forces — permanent resident

    (1.1) Paragraph (1)(d) does not apply to a permanent resident within the meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act who has, subject to the regulations, no unfulfilled conditions under that Act relating to his or her status as a permanent resident and who

    • (a) during the two years immediately before the date of the application, completed six months of service in the Canadian Armed Forces; and

    • (b) has met any applicable requirement under the Income Tax Act to file a return of income in respect of the taxation year immediately before the year in which the application is made.

    However, paragraph (1)(d) does apply to the permanent resident if he or she was released other than honourably from the Canadian Armed Forces.

  • Marginal note:Canadian Armed Forces — person attached or seconded

    (1.2) Paragraph (1)(d) does not apply to a person who is or was attached or seconded to the Canadian Armed Forces and who, during the two years immediately before the date of the application, completed six months of service with the Canadian Armed Forces.

  • Marginal note:Automatic acquisition of citizenship

    (2) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, a woman, who

    • (a) by virtue of any law of Canada in force at any time before January 1, 1947 had, by reason only of her marriage or the acquisition by her husband of a foreign nationality, ceased to be a British subject, and

    • (b) would have been a citizen had the former Act come into force immediately before her marriage or the acquisition by her husband of a foreign nationality,

    acquires citizenship immediately on the receipt by the Minister of a notice in writing by her that she elects to be a citizen.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-29, s. 11
  • 2001, c. 27, s. 229
  • 2005, c. 17, s. 1
  • 2008, c. 14, s. 7
  • 2014, c. 22, s. 9
  • 2017, c. 14, s. 7

PART IVEvidence of Citizenship

Marginal note:Application for evidence of citizenship

  •  (1) The Minister shall — on application by a person — determine, including by way of an electronic system, whether they are a citizen and, if they are,

    • (a) subject to any regulations made under paragraph 27(1)(i), issue a certificate of citizenship to them; or

    • (b) subject to any regulations made under paragraph 27(1)(i) or (i.1), provide them with some other means to establish their citizenship.

  • Marginal note:Providing evidence of citizenship on acquisition

    (2) After a person acquires citizenship as a result of an application under section 5 or 5.1 or subsection 11(1), the Minister shall

    • (a) issue a certificate of citizenship to the person; or

    • (b) provide the person with some other means to establish their citizenship.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-29, s. 12
  • 2008, c. 14, ss. 8, 13
  • 2014, c. 22, s. 10
 
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