Certificate of residency

Residents of Canada are subject to tax in Canada on their world income (income from Canadian and foreign sources). Income from sources outside of Canada can also be taxed in the country where it was earned. But you can reduce or eliminate the amount of tax you have to pay on income from other countries if Canada has a tax treaty with them.

Some countries want a certificate of residency to prove that taxpayers who receive income from their country and want to access tax treaty benefits are, in fact, residents of Canada. These countries will ask you to give the certificate to either the payer of the income or their country’s tax administration. The certificate of residency allows them to exempt you from paying income tax or for you to pay tax at a reduced rate, based on the terms of the tax treaty between Canada and the foreign country.

A certificate of residency issued by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) proves only that the taxpayer has filed returns as a resident of Canada.

You can ask for a certificate of residency for the current year or for earlier years.

Who can get a certificate of residency?

An individual, a corporation, a trust, a non-profit organization, or a charity can get a certificate of residency, as long as they are resident in Canada.

The CRA cannot certify the residency of a partnership because partnerships are not considered resident; however, each partner of a partnership can ask for a certificate. Alternatively, a representative authorized to act on behalf of the partners of the partnership can make a request on behalf of the partners. In such cases, the CRA will certify the residency of all partners of the partnership, and certify that the partnership is a “Canadian partnership” in accordance with subsection 102(1) of the Income Tax Act as of a particular time.

Notarizing and authenticating documents

In some countries, taxpayers who apply for tax treaty benefits need to provide a notarized document to show that they are residents of Canada. It is the responsibility of the taxpayer to get the services of an authorized notary.

Some countries want the certificates of residency issued by the CRA to be authenticated or have apostille certification. The CRA cannot authenticate documents or provide apostille certifications. The information that follows is for taxpayers who need those procedures:

  • Authentication: The document needs to be notarized by a Canadian notary and authenticated by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. See Authentication of documents for more information.
  • Apostille certification: The document needs to be notarized by a Canadian notary, authenticated by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, and legalized by the particular country’s embassy in Canada. For addresses to foreign embassies in Canada, see Diplomatic Missions' Addresses.

How to get a certificate of residency

To get a certificate of residency, mail or fax your written request, or the form given to you by the foreign government for this purpose, to your Taxpayer services regional correspondence centre.
In some cases, you may be able to ask for the certificate over the phone:

  • for individuals or trusts, call our Individual income tax and trust enquiries telephone service at 1-800-959-8281.
  • for corporations or not-for-profit organizations, call our Business enquiries telephone service at 1-800-959-5525.

If the foreign government has given you a form and wants it to be certified and returned to them, you need to send us the form by mail.

Note

Allow four to six weeks for your request to be processed.

What to include in your request

Individuals:

  • full name
  • address
  • social insurance number
  • name of the foreign country
  • year for which the certification is required

Trusts:

  • name of the trust
  • mailing address of the trustee, executor, administrator or custodian
  • trust account number
  • name of the foreign country
  • year for which the certification is required

Corporations, non-profit organizations, and charities:

  • business name or name of the organization or charity
  • mailing address
  • business number
  • name of the foreign country
  • year for which the certification is required

Partnerships:

In order for the CRA to issue one Certificate of Residency for all partners in a partnership, a partner representing the partners in the partnership would have to provide the following:

  • a list including the names of the partners, their addresses and social insurance numbers, business number or trust account number;
  • a signed form T1013 or a letter of consent from each partner in the partnership involved to ask for their residency status to allow the CRA to release the information to the representative;
  • the partnership business number;
  • the name of the foreign country; and
  • the year for which the certification is required.

Letter of Consent

If authorization was not previously submitted to the CRA a copy of the letter of consent must be attached to the certificate of residency request. The letter of consent must contain the following:

  • the name of the partner;
  • the name of the partnership;
  • the name of the representative;
  • the date;
  • each partner must indicate whichever of the following is applicable:
    • that I am a Canadian resident, or
    • that I am not a Canadian resident.

The partner must indicate that they acknowledge by signing the letter of consent, they are allowing the CRA to disclose their residency status to the representative. The written consent will be valid until revoked by the partner; and the partner must sign the request. The CRA must receive this request within six months from the date it is signed. For businesses and trusts the letter may only be signed by an authorized person of the business or trust. This includes an owner, partner of a partnership, a director of a corporation, an officer of a non-profit organization, or a trustee.

Taxpayer services regional correspondence centres

If you reside in:

  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • New Brunswick
  • Nova Scotia
  • Prince Edward Island

Send your request to:

Nova Scotia TSO
Ralston Building
1557 Hollis Street
Post Office Box 638
Halifax, NS  B3J 2T5
Fax: 902-426-4888

If you reside in:

  • Quebec

Send your request to:

Montréal TSO
305 René-Lévesque Boulevard West
Montréal, QC  H2Z 1A6
Fax: 514-496-5345

If you reside in:

  • Ontario
  • Nunavut

Send your request to:

London TSO
451 Talbot Street
London, ON  N6A 5E5
Fax: 519-645-4029

If you reside in:

  • Manitoba
  • Saskatchewan
  • Alberta
  • Northwest Territories

Send your request to:

Saskatoon TSO
340 3rd Avenue North
Saskatoon, SK  S7K 0A8
Fax: 306-652-3211

If you reside in:

  • British Columbia
  • Yukon

Send your request to:

Burnaby Fraser TSO
9737 King George Boulevard
Post Office Box 9070, Station Main
Surrey, BC  V3T 5W6
Fax: 604-587-2010

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