In June 2017 Bill C-6 was passed paving the way for some significant changes to Canada’s Citizenship Act. While the first phase of changes came into effect at the time of the announcement, the latest round of changes are set to come into effect on October 11.
Permanent residents stand to receive the biggest benefit from the newest round of changes—with the biggest change being the number of days an applicant must spend as permanent resident before applying for citizenship, and how those days are counted.
Previously, applicants for citizenship were required to have 1,469 days (four years) of permanent residence in Canada within a six-year period before applying for citizenship. But with the changes, applicants are only required to have a total of 1,095 days (three years) of residence in Canada over a five-year period before becoming eligible for citizenship.
The changes also benefit those who spend time in Canada for work or study—up to 365 days of this time spent as a temporary resident can now count toward overall residency days. By reducing the amount of time required to stay in the country, the path to citizenship will become easier for many permanent residents.