In an effort to simplify citizenship rules, Immigration Canada recently introduced new amendments to the Citizenship Act. The new law, which came into effect on April 17, 2009, has three major changes:
1. Acquisition and Restoration of Citizenship
Upon the passing of the amendments, certain individuals who had lost citizenship or never gained citizenship as a result of the previous law, automatically and retroactively received citizenship. These individuals received citizenship at the date it was lost, or at birth, depending on the circumstances. While it is no longer necessary to apply for citizenship, these individuals are encouraged to obtain a Certificate of Citizenship as proof of their new status.
2. Citizenship for those Adopted Outside of Canada
Under the new law, children adopted outside of Canada by Canadian parents between January 1, 1947 and February 14, 1977, may apply for a grant of citizenship.
3. First Generation Limitation
To protect the value of Canadian citizenship for the future, the new law no longer allows Canadians to pass on their citizenship to endless generations born outside of Canada. Citizenship from a Canadian parent may now only be passed to one generation born outside of Canada.
To better understand who has been affected by the new citizenship rules, please consult CIC’s website.