Loss of Canadian Citizenship - ask an international

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Is it a rule that any Canadian Citizen who acquired another citizenship =
prior to February 15, 1977 automitacally lost their Canadian Citizenship =
but any time after that one did not lose their Canadian Citizenship? How =
is this enforced? Has there been any court challenges as there does not =
appear to be any recourse such as due process etc? Your recent =
references to previous answers to this query are not clear and specific =
and are open to interpetation. Thanks K
david ingram replies:
That's the rule although there are thousands it has never been applied =
to.  Many people who went to the states ad took out US citizenship =
simply return to Canada and nothing is ever said because they have not =
called attention to their situation.
In other words, they have applied for a Canadian passport and not =
declared their action.  There is no reason to suspect someone since =
thousands, (my aunt included) have lived in the US for thirty or forty =
years with a green card and never took out US citizenship and therefore, =
did not lose their Canadian citizenship.
I have also met hundreds of people who lost their citizenship and =
applied to come back as a PR (permanent resident) and then taken out =
their Canadian citizenship after a year's residence. In many cases, they =
then returned to the US.
UYp until 1980, the US also tried to take away US citizenship when a =
citizen took out the citizenship of another country but the Supreme =
Court overturned the concept in 1967 and again in 1980.
Go to www.centa.com and read my October, 1993 newsletter for 7 pages of =
information on US / Canadian dual citizenship and references to the two =
cases which made the law. direct to newesletter is: =
US Cases
 Afroyim v. Rusk, 387 US253 (1967)
 The Supreme Court held that Congress does not have the power under the =
Constitution to take away a citizen's citizenship without his or her =
 Vance v. Terrazas, 444 US252 (1980)
 The Supreme Court held that to establish loss of citizenship, the =
Government must prove the person not only voluntarily performed the =
expatriating act but intended to relinquish citizenship. It added that =
the intent may be shown by the person's words or proven conduct.
 The following is from the CBC Website and deals with your comments =
about challenging the loss of Canadian citizenship.
Government asked to allow 'lost children' to claim Canadian citizenship=20
Last Updated Wed, 29 Jan 2003 1:11:25=20
OTTAWA - The federal immigration minister is being urged to restore the =
citizenship of thousands of people who lost their status when their =
parents became citizens of other countries.=20
People affected took their case to a parliamentary committee that's =
reviewing a proposed new Citizenship Act. They say they never stopped =
being Canadian when their families moved out of the country.=20
In front of disbelieving MPs, Magali Castro-Gyr held up her valid =
Canadian passport, her birth certificate showing she was born in =
Montreal in 1959, and a Canadian citizenship award her 10-year-old son =
received recently. But Ottawa says Castro-Gyr and her sons aren't =
"I said (to my son) 'What would you say to this committee for me?' He =
said, 'Mom, tell them this, I am Canadian, and tell them with capital =
letters with an exclamation mark!'"=20
Castro-Gyr only discovered she wasn't Canadian two years ago, when she =
tried to get citizenship papers for her children. They'd been born in =
Switzerland and she was returning to Canada to teach in British =
Citizenship officials told her she'd lost her citizenship as a child, =
when her father moved the family to the United States and he himself =
became an American citizen.=20
"It becomes truly irrational and absurd to disentitle a Canadian-born =
child from his or her ability to retain Canadian citizenship, solely on =
the actions taken by her father," said Castro-Gyr.=20
But the Citizenship Act of 1947 said children were essentially property =
of their fathers and lost citizenship if their fathers did. The law was =
changed in 1977, but that was too late for Castro-Gyr.=20
It was also too late for Dan Chapman. The 48-year-old airline pilot lost =
his citizenship at the age of seven, when his father went to the United =
States. Chapman is bitter about it.=20
"If there was ever a lesson to be learned in 1940s Germany it's that you =
never create a class of people and take away all their rights. When you =
do that bad things happen, so you just don't go there. But Canada has =
gone there, so it's time to correct it," he said.=20
But Canadian officials have only suggested Castro-Gyr and Chapman apply =
for landed immigrant status. As former Canadians they'll only have to =
reside in Canada one year, instead of the usual three for everyone else. =
But both think it's an insult. Castro-Gyr has spent $20,000 fighting the =
issue in Federal Court.=20
"It's an emotional connection that I have with Canada. I am not an =
immigrant, OK? I am born here. Yes, I left for the United States as a =
minor child, but we kept ties with Canada through my entire life," she =
But in Chapman's case, the fact that his great-great-uncle was one of =
the first judges appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada doesn't help =
Canadian Alliance House leader John Reynolds says Canada doesn't want to =
restore their citizenship because it might mean thousands of people =
returning to claim health and social benefits.=20
"They're good people, they're hard-working people, they want to be =
Canadians, and because of a little glitch in the law, which I think is =
totally against human rights =96 and if it goes to the Supreme Court I'm =
sure it will be ruled they'll get it back. But I think there's a good =
feeling in this committee even from the Liberals, that they couldn't =
believe it when they heard this story."=20
Reynolds believes the time is right for change. Immigration Minister =
Denis Coderre is proposing the first overhaul to Canada's citizenship =
laws in 25 years. Reynolds wants it to include an amendment to restore =
citizenship for people who wouldn't have lost it under today's laws.=20
But Coderre isn't ready to do that. "I won't make a general statement =
about the situation. I'm willing to look at some specific cases I've =
heard. Mr. Reynolds and other members of Parliament show me some cases, =
I'm going take a closer look at that, but there's some situations I'm =
ready to take a look at."=20
But Chapman and Castro-Gyr aren't interested in dealing with the issue =
case by case. They say nothing short of welcoming back the people they =
consider Canada's "lost children," is good enough.=20
If you have performed or intend to perform an expatriating act, or if =
you have any questions concerning the rights or duties of citizenship, =
the nature of the statutory expatriating acts, or the question of intent =
to relinquish citizenship, you are urged to contact any of the following =
If abroad, the nearest US Embassy or Consulate;
If in the United States, one of the following divisions of the Office of =
Citizens Consular Services, Department of State,=20
Washington, D.C. 20520:
African Services Division (202) 632-4994=20
Inter-American Services Divisions (202) 632-3712=20
East Asian/Pacific Services Division (202) 632-3675
European Services Division (202) 632-3444=20
Near Eastern & South Asian Services Division (202) 632-6680
Or one of the US Passport Agencies following:
Boston Passport Agency Suite E123 John F. Kennedy Building Government =
Center Boston, Massachusetts, 02203
Chicago Suite 380 Kluczynski Federal Building 230 South Dearborn Street =
Chicago, Illinois, 60604
Honolulu Room C-106 New Federal Building 300 Ala Moana Boulevard =
Honolulu, Hawaii, 96850
Houston One Allen Center 500 Dallas Street Houston, Texas, 77002
Los Angeles Suite 13100 Federal Building 11000 Wilshire Boulevard Los =
Angeles, California, 90024
Miami Passport Agency Room 1616 Federal Office Building 51 Southwest =
First Avenue Miami, Florida, 33130
New Orleans Room 400 International Trade Mart 2 Canal Street New =
Orleans, Louisiana, 70130
New York Passport Agency Suite 270, Rockefeller Center 630 Fifth Avenue =
New York, New York, 10111
Philadelphia Room 4426, Federal Office Building 600 Arch Street =
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106
San Francisco Suite 200 525 Market Street San Francisco, California, =
Seattle Passport Agency Room 992 Federal Building 915 Second Avenue =
Seattle, Washington, 98174
Stamford Passport Agency One Landmark Square Broad and Atlantic Street =
Stamford, Connecticut, 06901
Washington 1425 K Street N.W. Washington, D.C., 20524}
Parts of this are copyrite of either the US or the Canadian Government.
 [Opinion and comment text copyright David Ingram. If you have any =
comments, additions, corrections, deletions or other suggestions that =
your own personal experience has shown should be a part of this, please =
communicate those changes to me at the address at the bottom of this =
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