Is it Possible to Lose Citizenship?

Losing Canadian Citizenship

You cannot currently lose your Canadian Citizenship without renouncing it or having it revoked. That means that you cannot lose your Canadian citizenship by many of the means that you can lose the citizenship of other countries such as:

  • Naturalizing as a citizen in another country;
  • Serving in the military of another country;
  • Failing to reside in Canada for a specific period of time;
  • Failing to affirm your citizenship after a certain time abroad.

There are only two ways you can lose your citizenship:

  • renunciation
  • revocation.

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Canadian Citizenship Renunciation

You can voluntarily renounce your Canadian Citizenship by submitting an application or Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Learn more about renouncing your citizenship.

Why would you want to renounce your citizenship? Well,

  • There are potential tax benefits, though you can also get those merely by renouncing only your residence rather than completely renouncing your citizenship.
  • Other countries may not allow you to naturalize without first renouncing your Canadian citizenship.
  • Finally, some renounce Canadian citizenship as a form of political protest.


Revocation of Canadian Citizenship

Under the current citizenship law, your Canadian Citizenship can only be revoked by the Canadian authorities under very specific circumstances. Learn more. As of 2018, the revocation process has being amended so that anyone who is in danger of having their citizenship revoked can have the processed decided in Federal Court.


I lost my citizenship under the old rules. Can I get it back?

If you lost your Canadian citizenship prior to 1977 based on Canada’s old citizenship regulations, you most likely can retain your citizenship. Please contact us at 1-866-760-2623 or complete the citizenship certificate application and send it to us at


I think I lost my Canadian citizenship but I don’t know

If you think you lost your citizenship since 1977, then you would have been informed of losing your citizenship (through renunciation or, more recently, by revocation). If you were not informed of losing your citizenship, you didn’t lose it.

If you think you lost it before 1977, contact us at 1-866-760-2623 to see if you can remain a Canadian citizen.