First Citizenship Certificate
A citizenship certificate is the form of proof of Canadian citizenship. Any Canadian citizen can apply for a citizenship certificate, though if you were born in Canada you do not need to get one as your birth certificate will suffice for proof of citizenship within Canada.
Below are three types of Canadian citizens and how you can prove your citizenship:
Proof of Citizenship – Born Outside of Canada to a Canadian
If you were born outside of Canada, you need to apply for a Canadian Citizenship Certificate in order to claim the benefits of citizenship, such as carrying a Canadian passport, working in Canada, or voting in Canadian elections.
A Registration of a Birth Abroad is usually acceptable as proof of citizenship for a Canadian passport but may not be acceptable within Canada as proof of citizenship for other government departments and agencies, or for employers and schools. Not everyone will know what a Registration of Birth Abroad is.
The Citizenship Certificate is the standardized document that will leave no doubt as to whether or not you are a citizen.
Proof of Citizenship – Naturalized in Canada
If you were naturalized in Canada (you applied, took the test and took the oath) then you would have been issued a citizenship certificate when you swore the oath. (Prior to 2012, a wallet-sized citizenship card was issued at the naturalization ceremony.)
Proof of Citizenship – Born in Canada
If you were born in Canada, your Canadian birth certificate will suffice as proof of citizenship anywhere in Canada. If you need proof outside of Canada, a Canadian passport is the only acceptable proof internationally. (A NEXUS Card is not proof of citizenship.)
If you have lost your birth certificate, it is usually easier to replace the birth certificate than getting a citizenship certificate.
To replace your birth certificate, contact your provincial Vital Statistics Office or Registrar General:
Get Proof of Citizenship
Prove Your Status in Canada.
We’ll review your application for accuracy and completeness and file it with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).