In order to become a citizen in Canada, Permanent Residents must meet certain residency requirements. These include both physical presence and residency (a distinction we will make clearer in this blog). Citizenship and Immigration Canada provides immigrants with a useful calculation tool to help you to understand whether or not you are eligible.
The residency calculator is available online at the CIC’s website and it will ask you three questions, to which your answers will come in the form of dates.
- The first question will want to know when you first entered Canada. Unless you became a Permanent Resident upon entry to Canada this date will probably be the date that you were admitted under a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV).
- Next you will be asked when you became a Permanent Resident. If you can’t quite remember when you became a Permanent Resident you can simply refer to the back of your PR Card, the date will be written there. If you don’t have your PR Card anymore you should look into having it replaced.
- Lastly you will enter the date that you decide to sign the citizenship application. You can always choose to use today’s date to simply estimate how long it will take for you to become eligible.
When you click calculate (you can also click save if you are registered with the CIC and it will remember your specifications for future eligibility checks) the CIC website will return the number of eligible days you have resided in Canada.
If this number is greater than 1,095 you have sufficient residency to apply for citizenship. However, you should keep in mind that any trips outside of Canada can count against this number as you are not “physically present” within Canada.
Make sure you consider every day that you may have been travelling before applying for citizenship to avoid a rejected application.