Documents that prove your Canadian citizenship
You can only use certain documents to prove your Canadian citizenship.
Proofs of citizenship we accept
A citizenship certificate is an 8½ x 11-inch paper document that proves your Canadian citizenship. It has:
- the certificate number
- your family name and given name(s)
- your date of birth
- your gender (male, female, or another gender)
- the effective date of citizenship
Example of a citizenship certificate
Older citizenship certificates
We gave out different citizenship certificates in the past. These older certificates are still valid as proof of Canadian citizenship.
Examples of older citizenship certificates
- The cards are still valid as proof of Canadian citizenship.
- The date on your citizenship card is not the date you became a Canadian citizen (it’s the date we produced the card).
- To update or replace your citizenship card, apply for a citizenship certificate.
Example of a citizenship card
Do not re-laminate your citizenship card
A re-laminated card is not valid as proof of citizenship because it:
- blurs the security features of the original laminate
- makes it difficult to detect a fake card
Other documents we accept
- birth certificates from a Canadian province or territory (there are exceptions)
- naturalization certificates issued before January 1, 1947
- registration of birth abroad certificates issued between January 1, 1947 and February 14, 1977
- certificates of retention issued between January 1, 1947 and February 14, 1977
Documents we don’t accept
Citizenship record letter
If you apply for a search of citizenship records, the record letter you receive is not a valid proof of Canadian citizenship.
The commemorative certificate that came with your citizenship card is not a valid proof of Canadian citizenship (even though it has the date you became a Canadian citizen).
Exceptions for birth certificates
Your Canadian birth certificate doesn’t prove your citizenship if when you were born:
- none of your parents were a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada and
- at least 1 of your parents worked for a foreign government/international organization
We also don’t accept DND 419 birth certificates as proof of citizenship.
If you can’t use your birth certificate as proof of citizenship, apply for a Canadian citizenship certificate.
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