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Immigration Newsweek

Immigration Newsweek

By Atty. Henry Moyal

The much awaited changes to Citizenship law are now effective.
The most important changes are below but include the reduction of the physical residence requirement to only 3 years.
As well, workers and visitors who were in Canada before becoming a permanent resident will get up to one year’s credit. Essentially, what that means is the live in caregivers will mathematically only need to be in Canada for 2 years to become a Canadian Citizen since they are required to remain in Canada for at least 4 years as workers.

As of October 11, 2017, new changes include:
• Required physical presence in Canada reduced to 3 out of 5 years
• Days spent in Canada before becoming a permanent resident, within 5 years of applying for citizenship, count as half days (up to 365 days) towards physical presence requirements
• Age range for language and knowledge requirements reduced to 18-54 years old
• Time required for applicants to file income taxes before applying for citizenship is reduced to 3 out of 5 years

A second major development for the month of October 2017 is the implementation of the age of dependant children to under 22.
As such, any application that is sent after October 24, 2017 can include a child under 22. This important change raises two important issues:

1. Applicants who have dependant children must be aware of this crucial change and file accordingly. If for example, a child is 20 now then it is recommended to wait until the changes take effect and to not file application now. Similarly, an applicant with a child that is turning 22 soon must file immediately.
2. There will no longer be a “continuous student” exemption. In particular, a child who is over 22 and still in school will be ineligible.

Finally, it is important to remind everyone that Canada Immigration has recently revised and upgraded its immigration forms and version codes.
Applicants using old forms run the risk that there applications will be returned unprocessed.

Attorney Henry Moyal is a certified and licensed immigration lawyer in Toronto, Ontario.
The above article is general advice only and is not intended to act as a legal document.
Send questions to Attorney Moyal by email or call 416 733 3193