Applications for citizenship certificates

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Who can apply for a citizenship certificate (proof of citizenship)?

A certificate of citizenship may be issued to a Canadian citizen who

  • has never had a certificate;
  • wants to update a certificate;
  • wants to replace a damaged, lost, destroyed or stolen certificate.

Application process

A Canadian citizen who wants a certificate of citizenship must follow the instruction guide and send the following to the Case Processing Centre in Sydney (CPC-S):

  • the Application for a Citizenship Certificate for Adults and Minors (Proof of Citizenship) Under Section 3 form [CIT 0001 (PDF, 1.75MB)], completed, dated and signed;
  • the required documents outlined in the document checklist at the end of the application form.

Procedures for citizenship certificates

What must be verified before an officer approves an application for a citizenship certificate?

The following must be verified before an application is approved:

  • full proper name;
  • aliases;
  • date of birth;
  • effective date of citizenship and sections of the current and former Acts;
  • possibility of loss of Canadian citizenship or British subject status;
  • whether citizenship was acquired or restored under the legislative changes that occurred on April 17, 2009;
  • whether citizenship was acquired under the legislative changes that occurred on June 11, 2015;
  • for citizenship by descent, confirmation that the Canadian parent was either born in Canada or became a naturalized Canadian citizen BEFORE the applicant was born;
  • for citizenship by descent, confirmation that the Canadian parent is either the legal parent at birth or biological parent of the applicant born abroad;
  • if applicable, change of name or date of birth documents including Immigration amendment letter verifying change in date of birth and/or full proper name;
  • if applicable, accounting for previously issued certificates; and
  • any other required documents.

In the case of a replacement, the officer must verify and match the information against the Global Case Management System (GCMS) and microfilmed records.

Applications made by minors

A minor citizen, regardless of age, may file an application for proof of citizenship on their own behalf in accordance with the Citizenship Regulations.

When a child is under 14 years of age, a parent should be encouraged to make or countersign the application or, alternatively, should be advised that the child has made an application.

The responsibility for ensuring that parents are advised rests with the official processing the application.

Learn more about parental consent.

Stolen birth certificates

There is a list of stolen blank provincial birth certificates available through the CPC-S.

Nationality laws of other countries

Citizenship officers at the CPC-S and the local offices do not rule on the nationality laws of other countries. Where documentation from another country is required for an officer to make a determination of Canadian citizenship, the onus is on the applicant to obtain the necessary documentation from the authorities of the country concerned.

Applications for citizenship certificates: required documents

The documents required to establish citizenship vary depending on the requirements of the provision of the Citizenship Act under which citizenship is being established. High-quality colour copies of the required documents are to be included with the completed application for persons applying for a first-time or replacement proof of citizenship.

All applicants must provide

  • two pieces of personal identification, with one containing a photo, and, if applicable, other documents to support a change in name or a change in date of birth;
  • documents establishing citizenship outlined in the document checklist at the end of the Application for a Citizenship Certificate for Adults and Minors (Proof of Citizenship) Under Section 3 form;
  • other documents, as required, for the assessment of the claim to Canadian citizenship and the possible loss of citizenship.

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