It seems that every week the government of Canada is releasing a new press release to congratulate itself on positive changes to the immigration system, most recently the fact that Citizenship and Immigration Canada has reduced the backlog of permanent resident applications by 40 per cent since 2008 – the same backlog responsible for a number of different changes to Canada’s immigration system, like the temporary freezing of the acceptance of Skilled Worker Applications and the halt on sponsorship for parents and grandparents.
While the backlog for permanent residency application processing has been reduced, and processing times are now projected to be far less than the many years it was taking before, permanent residents who are already here and have applied for citizenship are running into a new problem: a residence questionnaire.
Applicants who have passed their citizenship and who for all intents and purposes should be citizens by now are being given a residence questionnaire – about 20 per cent of applicants receive one, and this questionnaire makes the applicant prove their residency. If you are a permanent resident who is applying for citizenship in Canada, you must have lived in Canada for three of the last four years before applying.
The questionnaire asks for certain supporting documents like airline tickets, tax returns and pay stubs so the applicant can prove their residency.
There is a residency requirement for Canadian citizenship, and it is important that the government is able to determine that those applying for citizenship have been honest in stating they have met this residency requirement.
When combined with the residency requirement for citizenship, that means it takes approximately nine years to become a Canadian citizen – and meanwhile these applicants are working and paying taxes in Canada, meet the requirements for citizenship, have passed a citizenship test, but do not get the same rights as Canadian citizens.
The VisaPlace Group of Lawyers (VPGs) and their staff are all independent, licensed practitioners who understand how important it is for to you to achieve your immigration goals and have been trained to follow best practices and procedures to maximize your chances of success! If you need help with the new Canadian Citizenship Application form, we’re here for you.
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