How to Apply for your Secure Certificate of Indian Status (Registered Indians 16 years of age and older)

This video by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada takes you through a step-by-step approach to applying for your Secure Certificate of Indian Status.

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Transcript: How to Apply for your Secure Certificate of Indian Status (Registered Indians 16 years of age and older)

The Secure Certificate of Indian Status, commonly referred to as the secure status card or SCIS, is a secure identity document that provides greater protection against fraud and identity theft while ensuring access to programs, benefits and services for registered Status Indians in Canada. If you are 16 or older and are registered as a Status Indian, this video will help guide you step-by-step, through the application process to obtain your secure status card.

It's important to closely follow these instructions because any information that is missing will result in your application being refused and returned to you.

First, you will need an application form. Forms are available online or get a copy by visiting an Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada regional office.

On page 1, you'll see information about the Privacy Act and how Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada is required to treat and protect your personal information.

If you have any questions, please visit our website, send us an e-mail or give us a call.

Page 1 also outlines specific content and steps that are important to follow. Start by getting two identical passport-style photographs that meet Canadian passport photo specifications.

The photos must include the photographer's contact information on the back and the date the photo was taken.

It's important to note that photos taken outside of the country will probably not meet Canadian passport photo specifications, such as the size required, and therefore will not be accepted. If you reside outside of Canada, you should bring the photo specifications found on page 2 of the application with you to the photographer.

If you are applying by mail, your guarantor will also need to complete and sign a guarantor declaration form. It can be found on our web site under the forms section. A list of who can act as a guarantor can also be found on the form.

Please note that a guarantor – who can confirm your identity and has known you for at least two years – must sign the back of one of your photos. Copies of all identity documents that are mailed also require the guarantor's signature on the front and back of each document. Guarantors perform these duties without charge.

Now please turn to the third page. Here you will fill out all of your personal information. Please read the notice in the orange box at the top that explains the importance of filling out this document truthfully. Please also note that this form must be filled out in black or blue ink.

You'll need to identify whether this is your first time applying for a secure status card. If so, check 'Initial SCIS'.

If replacing a lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed card check the second box 'Replacement SCIS' and check the third box 'Renewal SCIS' if renewing a card.

When filling in your name, please be sure to use your current legal name. As an example, if you are married and are using your spouse's surname, or if you legally changed your surname, write in the most current last name. Add a copy of the marriage certificate and a valid identification document that includes your married name. If you don't have a valid identification document then you'll need to attach your original marriage certificate issued by Vital Statistics in the province or territory in which you were married.

In the event of a name change, it's important to provide an original legal change of name document.

Please note that all original identification documents mailed to us will be promptly returned to you.

In Section 2, write in your first and middle names.

If you have an alias or cultural name which was provided to us when you applied for your Registration you can have it printed on your secure status card if you like. This alias or cultural name must be listed in the Indian Registration System for it to be printed on your new card.

If your last name is different than it was at birth, be sure to include your birth name in Section 4. You can confirm this by checking your birth certificate. Also, be sure to include your original birth certificate with this application. If you are over 65, an original baptismal certificate is acceptable.

Enter your date of birth in Section 5; your sex in Section 6; Registration number and name of the band in Sections 7 and 8.

If you don't have an Indian Registration number, please contact our enquiries line for assistance.

For Section 9 include a current mailing address however, should you move prior to the card arriving, simply notify our office of your new address.

Sections 10 and 11 require phone numbers where we can contact you if necessary.

At the bottom of the page, in section 12, sign your name. This is the signature that will appear on your card. Be careful not to touch the borders of the box because if you do touch the borders your application may be returned to you. You must sign this form in order for your application to be processed.

Page 4, Section B is required for a first time applicant, or an applicant who is replacing or renewing their card a year or more after their status card has expired. Once completed, please move to Section D. This Section covers supporting documents that you will need to submit your application.

Please be sure that all supporting documents required with this application are in good condition. Documents that are ripped, written on, or damaged in any way cannot be accepted.

If renewing or replacing a secure status card, please go to Section C in this section. Please write the serial number found on the back of the card and the renewal date, which is found on the front of the card.

If your secure status card has been lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed you will need to complete the Statutory Declaration form 83-113E.

After you've filled in all of the details, be sure you sign it in front of a Commissioner for Oaths, a Notary Public, or a Lawyer who can be found either on the Internet or in the yellow pages. You can also get assistance from the nearest Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada regional office or your Indian Registration Administrator located in First Nation band offices.

In Section D, "Documents to Support Identity", you'll need to write in the identity document types that you are submitting with your application. Copies of the original document can be submitted however, both sides must be signed and dated by a guarantor.

You will only be required to present one piece of ID if you provide one of the following: a valid Canadian or United States passport, a current Secure Certificate of Indian Status, an Enhanced Driver's Licence, an Enhanced Identification Card, a NEXUS card or a FAST card.

If you don't have any of these documents, you'll need to submit two pieces of valid identification which includes: a provincial, territorial, or state driver's licence, current status card or other federal, provincial, territorial or state government-issued ID. The valid identification presented must include your photograph, signature and name, though not necessarily on the same document. If you only have one piece of ID, please contact our enquiries line at 1-800-567-9604 to find out what other options are available. Remember that your guarantor also needs to sign and date the copy of the front and the back of each of your identity documents.

You will now need to sign and date the form.

As a final step, think of a personal four-number activation code. You'll need this code in order to activate the card once it arrives in the mail. In Section F, write down the number in both sections, then cut off the bottom section and keep it in a safe place for your records.

Congratulations, the application is ready for submission. Double check that all of the documentation required are included to ensure the application can be processed without delay.


Here is a final check list:


Mail everything to:

Secure Certificate of Indian Status Processing Unit
10 Wellington Street
Gatineau QC, Canada
K1A 0H4

If the application is complete and accurate, you can expect to receive the secure status card in the mail without delay.

And one final thing, don't forget to save your activation code and keep it in a safe place, so that you can activate your card as soon as you receive it.

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