Acquiring dual Canadian-American citizenship includes meeting the citizenship requirements for both countries independently, such as being born to a parent with citizenship or acquiring naturalized citizenship through residency. No separate citizenship procedure exists in either the United States or Canada for applying for dual citizenship, notes AllLaw.com.
The easiest method for a person to qualify for citizenship in both countries is to have one parent with United states citizenship and one parent with Canadian citizenship at the time of birth, notes AllLaw.com. However, as citizenship rules in both countries change over time, automatic citizenship without residency depends on the laws in place at the time a person was born.
For individuals with U.S. citizenship seeking to obtain Canadian citizenship without a Canadian parent, requirements include qualifying as a permanent resident by living in Canada for three out of a given four years without being convicted of a crime. After the fourth year of residency, a person can apply for citizenship, according to AllLaw.com. After applying for citizenship, applicants must pass a written test to prove knowledge of English or French, as well as an exam that covers the rights and duties of citizens, as well as Canadian history.
Requirements for Canadian citizens seeking to obtain American citizenship without an American parent also include qualifying for permanent residence, notes AllLaw.com. Qualifying for permanent residence in the United States requires a close relative with American citizenship, an investment of more than $1 million in an American-based company or an employment offer in a position no American workers are qualified or available to fill. Permanent residents live in the country for five years before applying for citizenship. Applicants must complete an interview, prove English comprehension, pass an history and government exam, and take an oath of allegiance to the United States.