Are You Eligible?

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Registration Under the Indian Act

This pamphlet describes who is eligible for registration as an Indian under the Indian Act. Registration as an Indian does not happen automatically; you must apply.

Please note this does not address the recent amendments to the Indian Act (2011) by the Gender Equity in Indian Registration Act.

What defines the eligibility for Indian Status?

The Indian Act defines eligibility for Indian Status (i.e. Registered Indians). The Indian Register is the official record identifying all Status Indians in Canada.

You are eligible for registration if:

  1. You were entitled to registration prior to the changing of the Indian Act on April 17, 1985;
  2. You lost your Indian Status as a result of your marriage to a non-Indian man (s. 12(1)(b)), including enfranchisement upon your marriage to a non-Indian man (s. 109(2));
  3. Your mother and father's mother did not have status under the Indian Act, before their marriage and you lost your status at the age of 21 (s.12 (1)(a)(iv) – referred to commonly as the double-mother rule);
  4. Your registration was successfully protested on the grounds that your father did not have status under the Indian Act, however your mother had status;
  5. You lost your registration because you or your parents applied to give up registration and First Nation membership through the process known as "enfranchisement"; or
  6. You are a child of persons listed in 1 to 5 above;

You may also be eligible for registration if only one of your parents is eligible to be registered under Section 6(1) of the Indian Act.

What Information do you need to apply?

Application Form which is available:

  1. Online.
  2. In person. At any AANDC Regional office or your First Nation office,
    or call 1-800-567-9604
  3. By mail.  Call 1-800-567-9604 to request an application.

Supporting Documents:

Detailed documentation requirements are included on the application form(s).

The following documentation is required to apply for registration:

  • Original birth certificate (listing parents' names)

And, if applicable:

  • Legal change of name document or marriage certificate, if the name you are applying under is different from your Birth Certificate
  • Custody Court Order
  • Statutory Declaration Form(s).

General Information:

You will be required to provide information about your self, your parents and your grandparents including legal names, dates of birth, band name and registration numbers, contact information and adoption information (if relevant).

Signatures required:

  • Applicant (16 years of age and older)
  • Parental / Guardian Signatures when applying on behalf of a minor child (15 years of age or younger) or dependant adult

How Do I Apply?

For all persons born after April 17, 1985 you are required to apply directly to your nearest AANDC Regional Office.

  1. In person at any AANDC Regional office
  2. Drop off* your completed application to any INAC Regional office or First Nation office.
  3. Mail your complete application with the required supporting documents to:

    Office of the Indian Registrar
    Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    K1A 0H4

Note: To avoid processing delays, submit all supporting documents (including any required original documents) with your application. Original documents, with the exception of statuary declarations and Guarantor Declarations, will be mailed back to you within one (1) month of receipt of your application. Documents of an adoption related application will be returned to you within two (2) months.

Once registered am I automatically a member of my First Nation?

Upon your registration as an Indian, you will be informed if your First Nation determines its own membership, and if so, provided with contact information. Otherwise, you will automatically become a member of your First Nation upon registration.

Further Information:

For more information, please call 1-800-567-9604
TTY: 1-866-553-0554