U.S. citizenship for Canadians

Don't leave home without it!

I have linked to this U.S. citizenship lawyer in previous posts. I would recommend the site. He assumes that U.S. citizenship is a prized possession that all reasonable people should aspire to. Interestingly he notes that:

“Obtaining citizenship may result in communication to the Internal Revenue Service.”

He lists many benefits of having U.S. citizenship (in comparison to having a Green Card). These include the benefits of: “No more paperwork” and “Emotional Benefits”.



“No more paperwork

If you become naturalized you do not have to worry about replacing your Green Card with newer versions.  Some time ago, the INS announced the expiration of the old green card forms I-551.  All people in possession of the card had to apply for replacement with a secure, machine-readable Alien Registration Receipt Card.  This card expires, and you must renew it.  Citizens do not have to do this.”

Emotional benefits

Finally, there are intangible advantages.  Most green card holders have decided that the U.S. is the permanent home for their families.  Canadians find it of psychological benefit to be on an equal footing with their American peers.  Becoming a U.S. citizen is an unassailable demonstration of commitment to the country.  This is important for school-age children who are very much concerned with their identity.”

It seems to me that having U.S. citizenship means a life of paperwork and living in terror of the IRS. In fairness,  I appreciate that he is comparing the benefits of citizenship to having only a Green Card. On the other hand, (depending on how long you have had the Green Card) it may be easier to cut ties with the U.S.

He also makes another interesting comment when discussing whether one gave up citizenship when becoming Canadian? He notes correctly that:

1. Becoming a Canadian will result in loss of U.S. citizenship if done with the intention of relinquishing U.S. citizenship. This is true. He then says:

2. “This relatively new policy is retroactive. This means that it applies to people who may think they already lost their citizenship–even if the U.S. Consulate already made that finding”

By way of clarification. This (in my opinion) does NOT mean that those who became Canadian during the 70s are automatically U.S. citizens. What it DOES mean is that those who lost their U.S. citizenship during the 70s have the right to get it back if they want.

Here is a comment that I posted on another site in relation to this issue:

In the early 90s the State Department began to use a “uniform administrative standard”, in relation to intent, that presumed an intention to retain U.S. citizenship when people became dual citizens. Prior to that, there were many cases of people who became Canadian who lost their U.S. citizenship. See for example the Richards case:


According to the State Department those U.S. citizens who lost their citizenship prior to the adoption of that “uniform administrative standard”, have the option (but are not required to) have their cases reopened in order to retain U.S. citizenship. See:


and specifically:

The premise established by the administrative standard of evidence is applicable to cases adjudicated previously. Persons who previously lost U.S. citizenship may wish to have their cases reconsidered in light of this policy.

A person may initiate such a reconsideration by submitting a request to the nearest U.S. consular office …”


1 thought on “U.S. citizenship for Canadians

  1. renounceuscitizenship Post author

    Somebody notified me of the following comment on one of the discussion boards:


    “For US expats living in Canada who want to pursue the backdated Certificate of Loss of Nationality (CLN) option, it apparently is possible to obtain such a thing. Ms. Anderson of the US consulate in Toronto has agreed with my (somewhat expensive) US lawyer that on the basis of my affidavit evidence submitted to date and subject to appearing before her and explaining the situation, she sees no problem in issuing a CLN bearing a date in 1984, when I took the oath of allegiance to Canada in the belief that in so doing I was relinquishing and did intend to relinquish my US citizenship. It’s not a done deal yet but they are not giving us an especially hard time. This solution will not apply to everyone. First, you must have genuinely intended to relinquish your US citizenship in taking up foreign citizenship. Second, all your actions since the date of that expatriating act must be consistent with that intention — e.g, you have not traveled on or even possessed a US passport, you have not attempted to assert US citizenship for your children born outside the US to you when you were still a US citizen, you have not voted in any US elections, you have not filed US tax returns, your have not worked in the US or lived there for any length of time. All these are true of my situation, and I can honestly say that I did not consider myself a US citizen since 1984. I am not renouncing my US citizenship but instead asking for official confirmation of an historical fact that I lost it in 1984.

    Originally Posted by …
    Also, it is good to make a written statement explaining why you relinquished your citizenship, and that it was done with intent. Say nothing about FBAR or taxes. That might confuse them into thinking that you are trying to get out of paying taxes. Here is what I wrote in my written statement to the State Department, which I gave them in my April 7 visit to the Toronto Consulate:

    I have lived in Canada most of my adult life. I have married a Canadian. After so many years in Canada it became clear that I have a great attachment to Canada, to my Canadian friends, to my Canadian wife and her family, and to my church community in Canada. I felt that it was therefore necessary to become a Canadian citizen so that I may become a full member of this great and wonderful country and its people. Therefore, I applied for Canadian citizenship in 2010, and I also had, even at that time, the intention of relinquishing my US citizenship. For in taking my pledge to the Queen of Canada, Elizabeth II, on February 28, 2011, I realized that it would be absurd for me to be of divided loyalty. My duty to the Queen and to the Dominion of Canada precludes me from maintaining citizenship in the United States of America, since when one country calls me to serve, dual citizenship could potentially create a conflict of interest. To avoid all such conflicts, I have decided with my full volition and all my heart, to relinquish my United States citizenship once and for all, realizing that it is an irrevocable act.”


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