Frequently Asked Questions About Bill C-3 (Simplified)

Hi all, I hope you are all in the process of changing your links over from my Non-Status Indian sites to my Indigenous Nationhood sites. My Facebook, Blogger and website have all been changed to Indigenous Nationhood. I will leave my old blogger and website links up for a few months to allow people to find the new sites, but please switch over so that you don’t miss any future posts. My Twitter and LinkedIn profiles are the same. New blog site: New website: New facebook name: Indigenous Nationhood Same Twitter: Pam_Palmater Same LinkedIn: Dr. Pam Palmater New E-mail = I hope you have all read my last blog post where I updated everyone with what is happening with Bill C-3. Since I still continue to get a large number of e-mails and questions related to what the application process and who qualifies, I decided to post another this blog will point you to the exact links which answer your questions. Please feel free to e-mail me if there is anything else I have not covered. I apologize to my readers if this information seems at all repetitive or you were hoping for a blog on another topic. I have been receiving so many e-mails and calls for information and complaints from Aboriginal people all over the country saying that they don’t know what is happening and their local organization or community has not provided any information. One would think that organizations like the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples (CAP) or any of their provincial affiliates, like the New Brunswick Aboriginal Peoples Council (NBAPC) and others would be in their communities informing people about next steps. Sadly, this does not appear to be happening and people are left on their own trying to figure out this amazingly confusing, complex, legal process. (1) DID BILL C-3 COME INTO FORCE? Yes, the bill is now in force and the Indian Act has been amended accordingly. You can see a copy of the amendments that will be added to the Indian Act at this link: (2) WHO QUALIFIES FOR STATUS? Here are the three criterion that INAC has indicated will determine whether or not you qualify for status under the new Bill: (i) Did your grandmother lose her Indian status as a result of marrying a non-Indian? (ii) Is one of your parents registered, or entitled to be registered, under sub-section 6(2) of the Indian Act? (iii) Were you, or one of your siblings, born on or after September 4, 1951? If you have answered yes to all of these questions, there is a good chance that you might qualify for status. These criteria can be found on INAC’s website here: (3) ARE THERE ANY EXCEPTIONS? Even if you meet all of the criteria noted above, you might still be excluded from status. Please take note of the very important qualification that INAC has recently posted on their website: “If the applicant’s grandparents were not married to each other before April 17, 1985 and the parent of the applicant was born after April 17, 1985, the 2011 Indian Act amendments may not entitle the applicant to registration.” This information can be found at the following link: (4) I ALREADY APPLIED BEFORE BILL C-3 BECAME LAW – SHOULD I REAPPLY? I had the very same question. I applied for my status before the McIvor case was decided and before Bill C-3 became law. I called INAC’s toll-free information line (1-800-567-9604) and asked the very same question. They informed me that INAC already has a process in place to deal with those who already applied. They advised me NOT to reapply as this might delay the processing of my application. They further advised that INAC would contact me about what the next steps are for my application to be considered. They said that while I am waiting for INAC to contact me, that I could be getting all the extra required documents in order to submit. This includes the guarantor form, driver’s license and passport photos. The following link provides detailed information about the registration process and the various ways in which you can contact INAC and ask questions: (5) WHAT IS REQUIRED TO APPLY FOR STATUS UNDER BILL C-3? Here is the link that provides you with detailed information about what you need to submit with your application: In simple terms; here is the checklist of things you need to apply: (1) The application form (for applicants 16 years and older); (2) The guarantor form (a lawyer, doctor, social worker, chief etc) who can confirm your identity: (3) OR the statutory declaration form to list two references (in case you don’t have a guarantor) (notarized by lawyer): (4) Two identical passport photos taken within the last 12 months (signed by guarantor or lawyer) (5) Copy of both sides of your driver’s license (or passport, etc) (signed by guarantor or lawyer); (6) ORIGINAL long form birth certificate (shows parents names); Here is the link which provides the more detailed list of exactly what you need and which highlights other requirements: There are many different situations which might require different or alternative documents and/or information. This simplified list is just to give you an idea of what is required. PLEASE refer to INAC’s website for precise information related to your own specific situation. Also remember that this blog is just trying to simplify the information and should never be relied on as legal advice. INAC asks that all the applications and documents be mailed (although I recommend that they be couriered so that you have a record) to INAC directly: INAC Application Processing Unit Indian and Northern Affairs Canada GD Stn Main Winnipeg MB R3C 0M2   If you have any questions, please contact INAC directly as they would have the official information that relates to your specific individual situation.   Hope this helps.


  1. My daughter received an entitlement letter from INAC yesterday, as well as a request for additional documents to satisfy the SCIS requirements (she applied May 2010). They've got separate forms for applicants who need to follow up with documents that require your entitlement file number as part of the information provided.
    This was quicker than we expected from INAC!

  2. Yes, I was told by INAC that they have a new service delivery standard of 6 months from the date of application after Bill C-3 was passed.

    This is a vast improvement over the service standard or lack thereof after Bill C-31. I also understand that INAC has even addressed the Bill C-31 backlog finally.

    I applied approximately two-three years ago before Bill C-3 was passed. I resubmitted as soon as Bill C-3 passed and they posted forms online to comply with the new SCIS.

    INAC is supposed to be handling the applications in order of receipt, so I am not sure why some have been handled but many who applied earlier have not been.

    I am so glad to hear they moved quickly on your file.

  3. I think they are dealing with them in order of receipt which is reflected in the file number (this is what a contact at INAC has said). My daughter's first application went in in 1986 and her subsequent application in May 2010, but that application was filed under the original file number reflecting the original application date. This is my understanding of the process.

  4. Yes, they have told me it is first come first serve essentially. I am just happy they have improved their service standard to 6 months. 🙂


  6. INAC is overwhelmed at this point. I've heard from people, and was at my regional INAC office last week, that they are taking 8-10 months to register people, and issuing of the SCIS cards is taking even longer… I know someone who's been waiting since July and still hasn't recieved it. It's a beaurocratic mess!

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