If you have applied for citizenship, you may be eager to become a Canadian and start enjoying all the privileges. The processing times for citizenship applications vary widely, but understanding how long you will wait can help you plan ahead.
After you have applied for citizenship, you will face a wait as authorities review your application. After December 31, 2015, the application process becomes somewhat more streamlined as applications could be moved from one region to another to move the process along more quickly. Your specific application times will vary depending on the complexity of your application, how many other people are applying, holiday schedules, and other factors.
Keep in mind that processing times do not include delivery times. Your application will spend time traveling to and from IRCC, and this can add to the total time, especially if you live somewhere where delivery of mail takes longer.
How Long Will I Wait?
Processing times of 12 months or more are not uncommon for citizenship applications. Processing times are determined by a number of factors, such as whether your citizenship application is non-routine. Non-routine applications are caused by changes to the application after it has been submitted because you changed your name or status. Your application may also be non-routine if you failed a test, missed a step in the process, or did not submit all needed documents.
The best way to determine how long you will wait for your citizenship application to be approved is to check processing times online. Information is updated weekly and gives you a rough estimate of how long you can expect to wait, depending on when you applied. If your application seems to be taking a long time, you can check your application status to ensure there are no problems.
Once your application has been processed and you have been approved, you will need to take the citizenship test. You will get a letter, explaining when and where the test is. Once you take the test, you will be told right away whether you have passed. If you have, you will be part of a citizenship ceremony, usually within six months of the test. When planning for citizenship, you will want to consider the test and the ceremony as well as processing times when thinking about when you will be a Canadian.
Reducing Processing Times
You can keep your application waiting time as short as possible by ensuring you use the right application forms and by submitting your form correctly the first time. If you need help, Immigration Direct has citizenship application kits and other resources to guide you through every step of the citizenship processing. You can also check current processing times through Immigration Direct, your one-stop resource for Canadian immigration facts.
Guide to IRCC and the Canadian Citizenship Process
Canadian Citizenship Application Checklist
Citizenship Application Photograph Specifications
Checking Citizenship Application Status
Updated on 10th May 2018.