Tue | Aug 30, 2016

How do I get my child a Canadian passport?

Published:Tuesday | January 21, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Deidre S. Powell

Dear Miss Powell,

My daughter was born in June 2012 in Jamaica. Her father was born in Canada. I heard that even though my child was born in Jamaica and I am a Jamaican citizen, my child can get a Canadian passport. Can you please tell me how to go about getting a Canadian passport for my child?

- JH

Dear JH,

Your daughter qualifies as someone who can apply for Canadian citizenship as she is the child of a Canadian citizen even though she was born in Jamaica. Your child is classified as a 'child born to a Canadian parent who was born in Canada' after April 17, 2009. This date is significant as this was when the law changed. Fortunately, under the new rules, your child still qualifies as her father was born in Canada.

If she is approved, her Canadian citizenship will be dated back to 2012, the date when your child was born. You do not need to apply for citizenship for your child as citizenship will be deemed automatic. But you will need to make an application for a citizenship certificate.

Before you proceed with the application, ensure that the name of your child's father is on your child's birth certificate. If his name is on the birth certificate, then you are one step closer to your goal and you may proceed to the next step.

If the father's name is not on the birth certificate, then you should make an application to the registrar in Spanish Town to have the father's name added to your child's birth certificate. You will need the child's father to sign the relevant documents to effect this change. In fact, to remove all doubts and delays, you may do a DNA test and submit the results with the application to the registrar.

Once your child's father's name is on the birth certificate, you will now need to gather all the original documents, complete the application forms, pay fees, and mail the application package to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).

documents you will need

The documents that you will need are:

Two certified true copies of your daughter's personal identification. At least one of the documents should have your daughter's photograph on it;

Original birth certificate for your daughter;

Proof that her father is a Canadian citizen, that is, original or certified true copy of his birth certificate;

Two identical photographs, taken according to the specification;

Fee of CAD$75;

Properly completed application form.

Submit the application and supporting documents to the CIC office in Jamaica for processing. Once CIC has received your application, an officer will review and assess your application to see if you included all the relevant documents and meet the requirements. If you meet the requirements, a citizenship certificate will be issued to your daughter. You may then use that to apply for a Canadian passport.

You should note that CIC assesses your application on an individual basis and may require additional documents based on your personal situation. If you have issues or concerns, please consult with an immigration lawyer to guide you in the process.

Deidre S. Powell is a lawyer, mediator and notary public who is a member of the Jamaican and Ontario, Canada bars, with offices located in Ottawa, Ontario. Her areas of practice are in immigration, real estate, personal injury, family, commercial and administration of estates. Submit your questions and comments to: Email: info@deidrepowell.com. Subject line: Immigration. Tel: 613-695-8777, Twitter: deidrespowell Facebook: jamaicanlawyer.