Canada will not appeal decision that strikes down first generation limit to Canadian citizenship by descent


Ottawa, January 22, 2024—The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, issued the following statement:

“The Citizenship Act currently includes a ‘first generation limit’ to citizenship by descent, which means that children born abroad to Canadian citizens beyond the first generation generally do not acquire Canadian citizenship automatically at birth. On December 19, 2023, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice declared that the first generation limit for those born abroad is unconstitutional.

“This law, as it currently stands, has had unacceptable consequences for Canadians whose children were born outside the country. For this reason, we will not appeal the ruling.

“People who may be impacted by this situation will no doubt have questions about what this means for them and their families. That is why we will continue to assess the impacts of the decision on existing legislation and will provide more information and confirm next steps as quickly as possible.

“Canadian citizenship is highly valued around the world and, as Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, I’m committed to making the citizenship process as fair and transparent as possible.”

For further information (media only), please contact:

Bahoz Dara Aziz

Press Secretary

Minister’s Office

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

Media Relations

Communications Sector

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada


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