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Citizenship, Visas and Passports

Dual Citizenship

Q: I always read your section in 24 Hours and for me it’s very educational, I learn a lot of things about immigration. People have different situations in life and I am one of them. My husband’s parents and some relatives are in California. He have 3 aunts and two of them are single. As one of them is very sick, the healthy one wonders whether she could come and live with us in Canada, if something happens to her sister. She is 70 and a US Citizen; is there a possible way that she could get dual citizenship? Can she stay in Canada for a longer time? If she can apply for dual citizenship, is she entitled for any benefits here? What about our parents, can they get dual citizenship? Me and my husband are having so much stress about this situation. Thank you.

A: This is a common question from people who want to help their aging relatives from abroad.  This is not a question about having dual citizenship, because both Canada and the USA recognize dual citizenship. The issue here is how to obtain citizenship (or more immediately permanent resident status) and in your aunt’s situation it is very unlikely. She may come and visit for 6 months at a time but not to establish a home in Canada. Also, you must be aware and prepared for any medical expenses in case she becomes ill while visiting. Although you cannot sponsor your aunt if you qualify, you could sponsor your parents. The sponsorship of parents is a very lengthy process, but once in Canada, they are entitled to the same benefits as any other permanent resident. Good luck

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