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Tag Archives: Obtaining Canadian citizenship

May 26, 2024

Published: April 26, 2024

French language proficiency will dominate category-based selection Express Entry draws in 2024 according to a recent Access to Information Request (ATIP).

The ATIP, shared with CICNews by Carry Immigration, shows that throughout draws in 2024, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will issue 78.5% of all Invitations to Apply (ITAs) to Express Entry candidates in category-based selection draws. The remaining 21.5% of ITAs will be issued in general draws.

Candidates eligible for selection through the French proficiency category will receive 30% of these with STEM occupations making up the next highest at 25% and healthcare at 15%.

The percentages of ITAs by category break down as follows:


According to the 2023 ATIP, when the category was first proposed IRCC noted that between anywhere from 11% to 15% of candidates invited through category-based selection would be from this category. However, to date, French proficiency draws have invited the highest number of candidates of any category (17,300 ITAs since July 2023).

The department also noted that inviting a high percentage of French-speaking candidates would help ensure that IRCC meets its mandated target of 4.4% of all francophone newcomers settling outside of Quebec in 2023.

The department was successful in this. Immigration Minister Marc Miller announced in January this year that 4.7% of all newcomers outside of Quebec. He said the target for 2024 would rise to 6%.

The same ATIP noted that support for this category was mixed. While 54% of stakeholders supported the category 42% indicated that they felt the category would have no impact or were unsure of the impact. Support was at its lowest levels from stakeholders in Alberta and British Columbia. They felt that there would be no significant economic impact outside of Francophone minority communities.

Other respondents in support of the category said there is a need for bilingualism in healthcare, tourism, hospitality, and education. They also pointed out the non-economic benefits that would come from the category such as removing barriers for French-speaking minorities to access services in their first language.

When will draws occur and how big will they be?

According to the 2024 ATIP, IRCC has developed a schedule for Express Entry draws in 2024. However, most details have been redacted. It says that draws will occur in a way that will “provide predictability to provinces and territories and clients with a consistent schedule.”

This is the first indication that draws will be held on a schedule this year. Draw frequency throughout 2023 was difficult to predict following the introduction of category-based selection.

Thus far in 2024, IRCC has conducted one general draw and at least one category-based draw every two weeks, although there have been occasions with three draws in one week. There is no way to confirm if this pattern will continue throughout the rest of the year.

In terms of how large the draws will be, IRCC says it will invite candidates based on admissions targets outlined in the current (2024-2026) Immigration Levels Plan. In 2024, IRCC has a target of welcoming 110,770 new permanent residents in 2024 and 117,500 in 2025. The number of candidates invited each year will not be the same as the target because Express Entry applications have a processing standard of six months. This means that candidates invited in the latter half of this year will not land in Canada until 2025.

Impact on CRS scores

The 2024 ATIP also says, “Anticipated round sizes at this frequency [of draws] should be feasible based on current expectations for pool vitality, although Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score and composition of the pool may deviate from expectations depending on PT (Provincial and Territorial) behaviour and pool replenishment.”

Put another way, this means the number of candidates in the Express Entry application pool, and their CRS scores, will have an impact on the minimum CRS cut-off scores for upcoming draws.

In the 2023 ATIP, IRCC said it expected to see a drop of approximately 10% in the total average CRS score following the introduction of category-based selection rounds. It anticipated that this drop would likely help widen source country and occupational diversity but also noted that there could be a negative impact on newcomer’s economic outcomes since higher CRS are correlated with stronger economic outcomes.

Express Entry draws in recent months have seen higher minimum scores for general draws, with none lower than 524. Meanwhile, some category-based selection draws have required much lower scores, such as 336 for a French-language proficiency draw on February 29.


French language proficiency will lead category-based selection Express Entry draws in 2024 | CIC News

May 26, 2024

Published: May 24, 2024

Immigration Minister Marc Miller has tabled a bill with Canada’s parliament to allow a first-generation limit to citizenship by descent.

This means that if the bill passes, children of Canadian citizens who were born abroad can pass their citizenship on to their children.

The bill, also known as Bill C-71, An Act to amend the Citizenship Act (2024,) will also “restore citizenship to ‘Lost Canadians’”. These are people who have lost or were never able to gain Canadian citizenship due to previous and outdated legislation.

“The current rules generally restrict citizenship by descent to the first generation, excluding some people who have a genuine connection to Canada,” said the Minister. “This has unacceptable consequences for families and impacts life choices, such as where individuals may choose to live, work, study, or even where to have children and raise a family. These changes aim to be inclusive and protect the value of Canadian citizenship, as we are committed to making the citizenship process as fair and transparent as possible.”

However, the legislation also states that “parents born abroad who have or adopt children also born outside Canada will need to have spent at least 1,095 cumulative days of physical presence in Canada prior to the birth or adoption of their child to pass on citizenship.”

In other words, children born, or adopted, by Canadian citizens born abroad will not be eligible for citizenship if their parents cannot prove that they have lived in Canada for a total of three calendar years before the birth or adoption of their child.

The Minister said more details will be available if the bill passes in parliament and receives royal assent. He did not provide a timeframe for the bill’s approval.

The proposed bill follows a similar decision by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice. Last December, the court declared that the second-generational limit is unconstitutional. The presiding judge ruled that the second-generation cut-off creates a distinction based on national origin because it treats those who are Canadians at birth because they were born in Canada differently from those Canadians who obtained their citizenship by descent on their birth outside of Canada.

The Government of Canada had the option to appeal the ruling but chose not to on the grounds that it agreed that the current law has “unacceptable” consequences for Canadians whose children were born outside the country.

How to get Proof of Citizenship

Under the current laws, Canada’s government requires a Canadian citizenship certificate to confirm citizenship status for those born abroad.

Eligible individuals can apply for a Canadian citizenship certificate at any point in their lives. It does not matter if their Canadian parent is living or deceased.

Applicants must prove that at least one of their biological or legal parents was a Canadian citizen at the time of their (the applicant’s) birth.

After Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) receives an application, they will issue an “acknowledgement of receipt” and process the application.

According to the latest processing time data available, it can take up to three months for applicants in Canada and the United States, and longer for those in other countries.

Canada’s immigration minister proposes new legislation for Canadian citizenship by descent