June 19 2015
To become Canadian, intent does matter now!
Coming into force of new measures governing naturalization:
One of the key changes to come into effect is the requirement for the applicant to be physically present in Canada for at least 1,460 days (four years) during the six years before the date of the application. The applicant must, in parallel, be physically present in Canada for at least 183 days in each of four calendar years within the qualifying period. This is a significant increase as previous rules mandated a stay in Canada of only 1,095 days (three years) during the four years before the date of the application.
Demonstrating intent is also introduced: applicants must now declare their intent to reside in Canada once they become citizens and meet their personal income tax obligations in order to be eligible for citizenship.
Language requirements are also reinforced as applicants now between the ages of 14 and 64 must meet basic knowledge and language requirements. Under prior rules, only individuals aged from 18 to 54 had to meet such requirements.
Last, the new rules provide for stronger penalties for fraud and misrepresentation (to a maximum fine of $100,000 and/or up to five years in prison).
Feel free to contact a member of our team at LJT to seek guidance and assistance.