Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Become a police officer with Federal Policing: Before you apply

1. Before you apply

On this page

  1. Meet the qualifications and requirements
  2. Demonstrate good character

The recruitment process for the police officer positions will be administered within a very short time period; information/documents will be requested with very short deadlines for submission. Applicants are encouraged to read through all the steps before applying and to begin gathering documentation and completing forms well in advance so that they are ready for submission when requested. Failure to submit documents or attend mandatory appointments within set timeframes will result in applications not being considered further for this process.

Meet the qualifications and requirements

Be a Canadian citizen or have permanent resident status in Canada. Individuals with permanent resident status must have resided (been physically present) in Canada for 3 (1,095 days) out of the last 5 years as a permanent resident.

The application process is conducted in Canada only. If you are a Canadian citizen living abroad, and you meet all of the requirements, you will have to travel to Canada at your own expense for some portions of the process.

As part of your application, we'll conduct a thorough background check into your activities during the past 10 years. This investigation will help us determine your reliability and suitability for the job. The investigation concentrates on, but is not limited to:

  • previous employment
  • education
  • neighbourhood inquiries
  • friends and associates
  • character references
  • personal finances
  • drug and alcohol use
  • online activities
  • criminal activities

Time spent outside of Canada: If you're a Canadian citizen and you've been outside of Canada for more than six months in a row during the past 10 years, you'll need to provide details of your activities during that time.

In some cases, we may ask you to provide details of your activities even if you've been outside of Canada for less than six months.

Accounting for your activities does not guarantee that you'll receive a security clearance. We'll assess time spent outside of Canada on a case-by-case basis.

Examples of documents to help you provide details of your activities include:

  • letters of reference or referral from foreign embassies and missions in Canada
  • letters of reference or referral from Canadian embassies or missions in the country in which you lived while abroad
  • security screening information from countries with which Canada has security information exchange agreements
  • letters or police clearance certificates from law enforcement agencies in the country/countries in which you lived while abroad
  • credit summaries from established foreign financial institutions
  • letters of reference from foreign educational institutions/universities

If you were away from Canada working for the Government of Canada or with the Canadian Armed Forces, you may not need to account for your activities.

Be at least 18 years of age to apply

While you can apply to the RCMP and go through the selection process and basic training at 18 years of age, you cannot be hired to work as a police officer until you are 19 years old.

There is no maximum age limit to apply to the RCMP.

Be proficient in English and/or French

You must be fluent in either English or French, including being able to speak, write, and read either official language. You do not need to be bilingual to apply.

Possess a valid, unrestricted driver's licence

If your driving experience is limited, it would be to your advantage to gain more experience before attending the Federal Policing Recruit Development Program. You will need to demonstrate good driving skills and be a confident, competent driver.

Possess a Canadian secondary school (high school) diploma or equivalent

If your education was obtained outside Canada, you must get an equivalency assessment. Contact the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials to find out which organizations across Canada perform these assessments. You can find out more by visiting Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials website.

If you did not complete secondary school, you must obtain an equivalency assessment. For more information, contact your local board of education or adult learning centre to be assessed and take a General Educational Development (GED) test or equivalent.

Meet the health and psychological standards

You must meet minimal health standards as assessed by RCMP Health Services. This includes a full medical assessment, laboratory test(s) and psychological examinations.

Meet the vision standards

You must meet the minimum vision standards as assessed by a registered/certified Ophthalmologist/Optometrist.

Vision examination: The vision examination and form (RM Applicant Vision Examination Report - RCMP 2180) must be completed by a Canadian optometrist/ophthalmologist. The minimum requirements are outlined below as well as on the form, in more detail.

If you have had laser surgery you must wait the following amount of time before having a vision examination completed:

  • Laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis (LASIK) surgery - 30 days
  • Photorefractive keratectomy (PRK) surgery - 90 days
  • Implanted corrective lenses (ICL, PIOL) surgery with anterior chamber lens - 6 months
  • Implanted corrective lenses (ICL, PIOL) surgery with posterior chamber lens - 12 months
Visual acuity:

Corrected vision (with glasses or contacts): Visual acuity must be at least 6/6 (20/20) in one eye and 6/9 (20/30) in the other; and,

Uncorrected vision (without glasses or contacts lenses): Visual acuity must be at least 6/18 (20/60) in each eye OR 6/12 (20/40) in one eye and at least 6/30 (20/100) in the other eye.

This minimum vision acuity is required for safe performance of policing duties if glasses or contacts are lost or displaced.

Field of vision: Must be at least 150 degrees continuous along the horizontal meridian and 20 degrees continuous above and below fixation with both eyes open and examined together.

Colour-vision testing: Using the standardized Ishihara pseudo-isochromatic plates, colour-vision will be considered normal if at least 17 of 21 patterns are correctly identified (pass).

If required, further evaluation will be conducted with the Farnsworth D-15 test. Applicants who pass the Farnsworth D-15 test will be assessed as meeting the minimum colour-vision standards.

Ocular disease: Applicants must be free from ocular diseases impairing visual performance. Further information may be requested at the health assessment stage.

Meet the hearing standards

You must meet the minimum hearing standards as assessed by an audiologist.

Hearing examination: The hearing examination and form (RM Applicant Hearing Examination Report - RCMP 6509must be completed by a practitioner in accordance with the Canadian Standards Association Standard on Pure Tone Air Conduction Audiometers for Hearing Conservation and for Screening. You cannot use a hearing aid during the examination. The minimum requirements are outlined below as well as on the form, in more detail.

Minimum hearing standards for RCMP applicants:

  • Hearing loss no greater than 30 decibels in the better ear in the 500 to 3000 hertz range; and
  • Hearing loss no greater than 30 decibels in the worst ear in the range of 500-2900 hertz and no more than 50 decibels in the worst ear at 3000 hertz.
Meet the necessary level of physical abilities

Police work is physically demanding. It is extremely important to achieve and maintain a high level of fitness prior to applying. Federal Policing Recruit Development Program is not designed to get you into shape, but rather to prepare you for the rigors of policing.

If you arrive in less than good physical condition, you will start training at a distinct disadvantage. Not only will you increase your risk of injury but you could compromise your ability to successfully complete the Recruit Development Program.

See Step 5 for information about the physical standards required of our police officers and how to be prepared.

Be prepared and able to carry a firearm and to use it or any other necessary physical force

As an RCMP police officer you will be responsible for maintaining public order and safety. You will be expected to use various levels of intervention in the performance of your duties as a police officer.

Be willing to work shift work including weekends and holidays

You should expect to work shifts, including nights, evenings, weekends and holidays as policing takes place 24 hours per day.

Be aware of requirements for tattoos, jewelry and other personal effects

Tattoos are permitted if they do not depict or incite hate, harassment, or discrimination against individuals on the basis of the grounds listed in Canadian Human Rights Act, section 3.

You may wear discreet personal effects on the body if they do not interfere with the effectiveness of personal protective equipment. Examples include glasses, watches, medical bracelets, jewelry, wedding bands, kangas, kirpans, karas, and medicine bags.

Be willing to complete the Federal Policing Recruit Development Program

As a new constable, you will be required to attend the initial 12 weeks of core recruit training at locations in the National Capital Region and remain in Ottawa to complete an additional 2 weeks of Immediate Action Response Deployment and Carbine training, prior to being deployed to your unit. Once deployed, you will be paired with a coach & mentor and will be required to follow and successfully complete a mandatory 2-year development curriculum.

Lastly, police officers must conform to certain standards. At several stages during the recruiting process, you will be made aware of the behaviour standards which will be expected of you throughout the application process and your career as a police officer of the RCMP.

Demonstrate good character

As an RCMP police officer, you will have a significant role in building and maintaining the public trust. You must uphold the highest ethical standards, both on- and off-duty.

To apply, you

  • must not have any matters pending or before a criminal court
  • must not have been convicted of a criminal offence for which you haven't received a pardon/records suspension
  • must not have participated in any serious criminal behaviour or activity
    • whether you were arrested and/or charged or not
  • must not have participated in any criminal behaviour or activity within at least one year of the date of application
    • whether you were arrested and/or charged or not
  • must not have been dishonourably discharged or dismissed including released for misconduct, from another police, military, or law enforcement organization
  • must not have any pending and/or current personal bankruptcies or consumer proposals

During the application process, you

  • must not participate in any criminal behaviour or activity in Canada or abroad
    • whether you are arrested and/or charged or not
  • must not cheat on any portion of the RCMP application process
    • including using counter-measures during the polygraph examination

Examples of criminal behaviours and activities

Serious criminal offences include, but are not limited to:

  • murder and manslaughter
  • sexual assault
  • production or distribution of child pornography
  • sexual exploitation, violence, abuse or neglect towards children and/or vulnerable adults
  • terrorist activities
  • participation with any organized criminal group
  • benefiting from the trafficking, importing, unlawful manufacturing or unlawful cultivating of illegal drugs
  • arson resulting in loss of life or substantial damage
  • forcible confinement
  • robbery
  • any crime committed with a facial covering and/or weapon

Criminal behaviours and activities include, but are not limited to:

  • illicit drug use (including non-medical prescription/steroids use)
  • theft
  • obtaining sexual services
  • procuring a person to offer or provide sexual services
  • assault
  • impaired driving

Evaluating your past actions

For all past actions, some of the things we consider in determining suitability are:

  • How serious was it?
  • How often did you behave this way?
  • What were the circumstances?
  • What was your intent?
  • Do you regret it?
  • How much time has passed since this behaviour occurred, or when the offence was committed?
  • How old were you at the time?
  • How have you behaved since that time, or since the time of the last incident?

No matter how well qualified, if you can't be trusted to carry out your tasks honestly and reliably, you will not be hired.