Everything You Need to Know about Immigration to Canada

18 Dec 2021, 1:02 pm


min read

The prospect of becoming a permanent resident or citizen of Canada is an attractive one, and comes with many benefits. We are sure many of you are interested in immigration, but the general procedures and specific case requirements can frankly be quite overwhelming.

Whether you want the wonderful Great White North to be a temporary home or your permanent residence, we are here to provide the latest and most reliable information to get you started on your immigration process. Stick with us and get the answer to all your questions about immigration to Canada.

Immigration to Canada has three main categories of programs for your consideration:

  • Permanent ResidenceLong-term immigration programs, including economic programs such as the Express Entry program, PNP and family sponsorship.
  • Work Permits: Programs such as temp visas and working holiday visa allow you to work and live in Canada for a limited period, and explore the country before making immigration decision
  • Study PermitsA permit to study at DLI institutions, with the possibility to work during and after your studies and an opportunity to continue the process of permanent residence.

In order to know which temporary residence or immigration pathway is right for you, and can help you move your case along for acceptance by the Canadian government, you need to know about the options in detail. There are opportunities for everyone to immigrate depending on their credentials and experience. Select the situation that applies to you, or keep reading further along for more details about immigration. 

You may also check your eligibility online:

Pathways of Entry to Canada 

In this section, we will help you find a suitable program for your visa application, depending on your need for temporary or permanent residence. 

Temporary Residency 

Temporary Residency overview

Temporary residency allows you to stay in Canada for the duration of your program of studying or working for a fixed span of time. Learn everything about temporary residency in Canada through these links.

Work Permit

Work Permit overview
A work permit can be obtained by anyone who is not a permanent resident or citizen of Canada and wants to work legally for a fixed duration.

One thing to note here is that a work permit can’t be a pathway for immigration. It is essentially a temporary residence program that allows you to complete the duration of work and then leave the country. A work permit can be a great chance for foreign nationals to stay in the country in order to survey the market and opportunities. 

As Canada offers a very favorable and diverse environment, it attracts individuals from all walks of life due to its attractive employment programs. The country is also known for practicing the highest standards for safety and boasts a strong economic structure ideal for learning and gaining experience for professional advancements.

The validity of these work permits is usually for a year or less, and you can’t change your job with the same work permit as it has your employer’s name on it. 

  • Eligibility

As mentioned above, work permits can’t help you with immigration but can help you make your case stronger to apply for immigration in the future. You don’t necessarily need to have a strong employment background or experience to apply for a work permit in Canada. It is eligible for both low and high skilled work positions. However, you will need an authentic offer of employment from a Canadian employer, and a clean record with no previous offenses or reasons that bar you from entry. You can be barred from entry because of medical/financial reasons or a past criminal record. 

  • Application Process

Anyone who wishes to apply for a work permit must do so through Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Again, you can only do so with a valid job offer or authentic documentation from a Canadian employer. The employer will also be required to present certain documentation, such as the Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) depending on the circumstances and reasons of employment.   

  • Open Work Permit 

You also have the option to go for an ‘open work permit’. For this work permit, you don’t need to have an offer letter from a Canadian employer. You’ll be required to pay a fee for the open work permit holder. Anyone who has a study permit in Canada but can’t afford the cost of studies can apply for an open work permit to support themselves for the duration of their studies. You are also eligible for this program if you are visiting the country with a temporary resident visa, applying in special programs as a young employee, or a dependent on a PR (permanent residency) applicant. 

  • Terms of Extension of Work Permit 

Although work permits are temporary, you can get extensions as long as your employer is on board with them. In case you have secured a new temporary job with another employer, you can get an extension too but you will still be required to leave when the permit reaches its expiration date. These extensions should be done 30 days before the permit expires. For those who hold an open work permit, it need not be changed with a change of employer as long as the validity remains. 

Temporary Work Permit Programs 

Temporary Work Permit Programs 

There are many work permit programs that are great for adding valuable experience to your career and strengthening your case for immigration. Check out the links below to learn more. 

  • International Experience Canada (IEC)

Passport holders of Australia, Ireland, and the UK under 30 or 35 years of age can apply for this program. Canada assigns the select amount of work permits for these countries every year, and the applicant can notify the authorities about their eligibility through the Canadian immigration website. 

You may receive an invitation to apply within a few weeks or months, after which you have to submit the necessary forms and an application fee of $153. The Letter of Introduction takes up to 8 weeks to process after all the forms and payments are submitted. You can work in Canada for up to two years with this program. 

  • Intra-Company Transfers
If you are residing outside Canada and your employer wishes to transfer you to the Canadian branch/affiliate or office, this program is the right one for you. This is applicable for Executives, Senior Managers, and Workers with an advanced level of expertise and knowledge. You must have work experience of at least a year with the employer in order to get the transfer.

The employers don’t have to get an LMIA for this work permit and have to pay a compliance fee of $230. The work permit costs $155 and the processing time depends on the country from where you are applying. These work permits are renewable. 

  • Free Trade Agreements 

Businesspersons and foreign workers with existing free trade agreements with Canada are eligible for this program. This includes the reciprocal exchange of certain categories of workers. It offers an easy way to temporarily reside in Canada, and eligible foreign workers along with their to-be Canadian employers don’t have to get the LMIA. The application process costs $155, and the processing time depends on your country of application. 

  • Temporary Foreign Worker Program 

By obtaining LMIA and proving that a PR or citizen in Canada is not suitable for the position, an employer can invite a foreign worker with a temporary work permit. It allows foreign workers to work for a specific employer, and the application can take as quick as 10 working days. Employers have to pay $1000 for the application while the candidate is not subject to any fee. The candidate can only work for one employer for the duration of their stay. 

  • Work Permit for Spouse and Common-Law Partner 

This is a type of open work permit for a spouse/common-law partner of a skilled worker in occupation under the National Occupational Classification (NOC). All the same rules of open work permit as mentioned above applies to this program, and the permit costs $155.

International Experience Canada (IEC) – Working Holiday Visa 

IEC Canada overview
Passport holders of 34 countries including Australia, Ireland, and the UK under 30 or 35 years of age can apply for this program. Canada assigns the select amount of work permits for these countries every year, and the applicant can notify the authorities about their eligibility through the Canadian immigration website. 

You may receive an invitation to apply within a few weeks or months, after which you have to submit the necessary forms and an application fee of $153. The Letter of Introduction takes up to 8 weeks to process after all the forms and payments are submitted. You can work in Canada for up to two years with this program. 

  • Eligibility 

IEC is a special visa program organized by the government of Canada in a bilateral agreement with 34 countries. It enables young people to travel, study and work in Canada for periods of 12 to 24 months. This duration of stay is determined by your nationality. Candidates are required to have a valid passport with an expiration date exceeding the duration of their stay. Your funds must be equal to $2500 at the time of arrival and have valid health insurance. This visa is not for dependents, and the principal applicant must have sufficient funds for a round-trip ticket. 

  • Types of IEC Visas 

There are three types of IEC Visas as follows:

  • IEC Working Holiday Visa 

This is the only type out of the three that provides open work permit to candidates. As discussed above, an open work permit means that you won’t be tethered to an employer, and have the opportunity to find your own way and passion in the country while working for any employer. This is the reason why this is the most sought-after visa out of the three, therefore the competition is fierce to get one!

-> Read more about Working Holiday Visa Here.

  • IEC Young Professional 

With this visa, candidates get an authentic job offer in Canada before they arrive in the country. You have to work under the same employer and place for the entirety of your stay. This visa is offered to nationals of 25 select countries and can be used to extend a Working Holiday Visa if you still want to stay in Canada and have found an employer. These visas are not as high in demand as the former, so the likelihood of obtaining one is higher. 

  • International Co-Op

If you are a young candidate looking for work in the same field of your degree, you can get this visa for temporary residency in Canada. The candidate must secure a job offer before arriving in the country and work with the same employer for the entirety of their stay. This visa is offered for nationals of 23 select countries and has a validity of 12 months. As with the Young Professional, this visa can also be used to extend a Working Holiday stay, and there are higher chances of obtaining one as it is not in high demand. 

  • Application Process

Applications can be submitted online through the Canadian government’s website. As Working Holiday Visas are the hardest to obtain, the selection is made through a ‘pool system’ with weekly draws that send out invitations to selected candidates. These invitations depend on the applicant’s country and the annual quota set by the government. 

The Invitation to Apply (ITA) is similar to the one given out for express entry applications but has a temporary nature of residency. Candidates have 10 days to accept the ITA and 20 days to complete all required documentation and submit them to get a work permit. 

Make sure to have your CV and other required documents such as Police Certificate, Travel Documents, Family Information Form and the required fee of $150 for participation, and $100 for open work permit holder (for working holiday program only) ready. You’ll also have to submit biometrics with a fee of $85, after which you can get the final approval (Port of Entry Letter). 

  • Benefits of IEC and Working Holiday Visa 

There are many benefits of this temporary residency visa. 

  • Explore the wonderful Great White North, and know that you can work and support yourself as well as have a full holiday year!
  • Find job opportunities and get valuable experience in a diverse and multicultural environment with opportunities to grow. 
  • Visit your loved ones in Canada and spend precious time with them for up to 2 years, while strengthening your chances of eventually becoming a permanent residence yourself. 

Study Permit 

Study Permit overview

As with work permits, study permit is also a temporary means of entering Canada for a specific time period. The document is issued to foreign nationals who wish to study in one of the designated learning institutions (DLI) of Canada. Study permit is just a document and not a type of visa, so you will need a visitor visa or an eTA (electronic travel authorization) to apply after obtaining the study permit. 

The study permits last for the duration of the study program you choose, with an addition of 90 days to give you ample time for preparation to leave or extend your stay in Canada. Even if you complete your studies before the permit expires, you can stay in the country for its completion with the additional 90 days. Students can leave and re-enter Canada during the duration of their study permits as long as the visitor visa or eTA is still valid. 

->Interested in studying in Canada? Read more about Study Permit in Canada here.

  • Student Direct stream (SDS)

Depending on your nationality, you can get your study permit at a faster rate by making use of the Student Direct Stream (SDS). The process is carried out within 20 working days in most cases. Belonging from Pakistan, Morocco, India, China, The Philippines, Vietnam or Senegal can make you applicable to apply through SDS. 

  • Eligibility

The individual must be accepted in a Designated Learning Institute (DLI) before they can get their study permit. These are specific schools that are approved by a territorial or provincial government to invite foreign nationals. All primary and secondary schools in Canada automatically fall under the DLI, while post-graduation programs have more elaborate eligibility criteria.

You will also need to present proof of having sufficient financial means for the tuition fees and living expenses, as well as return transportation. Any reason that bars you from entry such as a criminal record or financial/medical reason makes you ineligible to apply. You should also prove to an officer your departure from the country as soon as your permit expires. 

  • Documentations Required 

When applying for a study permit, you will need proof of acceptance to one of the DLI of Canada, proof of financial support, and proof of identity. Depending on your case, you may need to provide other documentation as well, especially if applying in Quebec. 

  • Application Process 

The application process is pretty straightforward once you assemble all documentation. Applying online is a smart move as online applications are likely to be processed at a faster rate while eliminating the need to pay courier fees. In most cases, it is compulsory to apply for a study permit before you travel. However, in certain situations, applicants can apply from within Canada or when they arrive at the port of entry. You will be required to give biometrics and photo with your application. 

  • Authorized Leave 

You are allowed to take up to 150 days of leave from your program without providing any proof or reason for leave. However, if you are taking a leave longer than 150 days, it counts as an authorized leave in situations such as medical/family emergencies or pregnancy, closure of the DLI or a change of institute, or starting your studies from the next semester. 

Visitor Visa and Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) 

Visit Canada

Those who wish to visit Canada for a duration of 6 months or under require a visitor visa or temporary resident visa. The official document makes you eligible to plan a trip, visit family and friends, or carry out important work procedures or special medical treatments during your stay. Visitor visas can be of single or multiple entry type. 

  • Who Needs an eTA

Unlike a visitor’s visa which is pasted on your passport, eTA is electronically linked to it. It has a much longer validity of 5 years or until your passports’ date of expiry. You can stay in Canada for 6 months or under, multiple times within the 5-year eTA validity. There are several visa-exempt countries that need an eTA for traveling to Canada.  

  • Eligibility 

All the individuals outside of Canada who wish to enter the country for short periods of 6 months or less can apply for a visitor’s visa or eTA. The most important factor is legal eligibility, meaning that you should be in good health and not have any past criminal records or offenses. The applicant has to submit documents and affidavits that prove that it will be a temporary stay. Binding ties and financial/professional reasons that tether you to your home country and promise your return back after the expiration of the visitor’s visa are all required in order for the application to be successful. 

  • Application Process 

You can apply for a visitor visa through paper or online. Applications can be submitted from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) with all the required documentation and visa fees. The processing can take up to 3 months or more depending on your case, or be ready within a few days. 

Permanent Residency 

Permanent Residency  overview

Permanent Residency (PR) is an immigration status granted for living and working in Canada without a time limit. Having a PR status allows you to have the same benefits of health care, studies and job opportunities as Canadian citizens, with a few exceptions. Applicants get a PR card that can be maintained through life.

By far, the most common way of immigration to Canada is through Express Entry, which processes applications in under 6 months when all immigration requirements are met. 

Express Entry 

Express Entry overview
Express Entry is a quick and straightforward way to get PR status in Canada. People are selected to strengthen the economy of the country while contributing towards its economic growth and filling labor gaps. Therefore skilled workers can take advantage of this program and make a living for themselves and their families in Canada efficiently.

->Learn everything you need to know about Express Entry for permanent residency in Canada here.

  • Who Can Apply for PR Through Express Entry? 

Express Entry is a great pathway for immigration. It is ideal for tradespersons, skilled foreign workers and graduates who are fluent in English or French, or both. There is no age limit, but younger applicants have an upper hand as they can have a higher score on their express entry profile, making them more likely to be selected for invitation to apply. 

The entire application process can cost somewhere from $1500 to $2000, along with the proof of financial backup to support yourself in Canada after immigration. To know more about the different skill levels, experience and programs for permanent residency, check out the other links that apply to you. 

  • Eligibility for Express Entry

There are a lot of factors that come together to determine if you qualify to apply for permanent residency in Canada. The applicant’s age, language, education, work experience/pre-employment in Canada and adaptability are the main factors that can make your case strong. Points are allotted based on the detailed assessment of all these factors, along with the required documentation and proofs. 

  • Application Process 

Similar to temporary residency applications, permanent residency can also be done online through IRCC. Once you determine your eligibility for immigration, the next step is to get all the documents ready. The main documents include your travel documents and passport, an assessment report of education credential and language test results. Additional documents such as a job offer from a Canadian employer can make the case stronger. We strongly recommend consulting with a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant before beginning the process on your own.

The applicants have to make an Express Entry profile and provide all the information, after which they enter into the pool of candidates that selects your profile for invitation to apply for PR through the point-based system. 

If you get invited to apply for permanent residency, you’ll additionally be required to provide medical exams, proof of funds and police certificates to prove that you are in good medical and financial standing to immigrate without any past criminal records or immigration offenses. 

  • Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS)

CRS is a very thorough and competitive system of ranking for Express Entry in Canada. The highest ranking applicants of any given express entry pool get the invitation to apply (ITA) for permanent residency in Canada.

CRS works on a merit based point based on the factors of eligibility. The straightforward system makes application process easy for candidates. The ranking is down out of a total score of 1200 points. The Core or Human Capital Factors is 460 pints with spouse and 500 without a spouse, whereas the Skill Transferability Factor and Additional Factors (such as PNP etc.) are 100 and 600 points respectively.  It’s important to note that CRS scores are not permanent, but rather fluctuate and can be improved by strengthening your case through certain variables. These include a better language score, more job experience or getting a higher level degree. Therefore, your case remains in the stream and can enter the Express Entry pool several times. 

  • Express Entry Draws 

A well-functioning system for immigration since 2015 includes inviting candidates who have applied through Express Entry to get permanent residency. This is done through the meticulously planned express entry draws. Although there are no specific dates for these draws, they take place roughly two weeks apart. Express entry draws are the deciding factor for your invitation from the pool of candidates that have applied for PR status in Canada. 

Every draw has a different cut-off score for CRS. The cut-off scores can sometimes result in ties, in which case there’s also a tie-break procedure in place based on the duration a profile has stayed in the express entry pool. A Canada Immigration Levels Plan is generated by the Canadian government every year. This plan sheds light on the amount of immigrants the government plans to give permanent residency status to that given year.

-> Follow the latest Express Entry draws

  • Invitation to Apply (ITA) 
If your application gets selected from the express entry pool, you get an Invitation to Apply (ITA). It is essentially an auto generated response that’s sent to you if your CRS scores are at or above the threshold for that particular draw. The invitation is sent by IRCC online on the candidates’ express entry profile. Having an ITA is a stepping stone for gaining entry in Canada as a PR, but it doesn’t ensure a permanent residency status. ITA is valid for 60 days without extensions, and all the required documents should be submitted within the due date. 

Any forged or misleading documents with false information will result in a direct ban from applying for permanent residency to Canada for 5 years or more. If you fail to submit all the documents within the due date, your ITA will expire and your profile will not stay in the express entry pool. In such cases, to get another chance for immigration, you will have to submit a new profile that will go through the same assessments for a new CRS score. 

  • Having a Permanent Resident Status 

As mentioned above, there are many advantages and benefits of having PR status in Canada. You can live like a citizen by having access to the same health and social benefits, liberty and the same rights of Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms under the law of Canada. However, unlike citizens of Canada, you can’t vote in elections or get some of the high-level security clearance jobs. You also won’t have a Canadian passport, rather a PR Card which you are required to show when traveling.

  • PR Card Loss & Renewal 

PR cards have a validity of 5 years, after which you need to renew them. In some cases, PR cards can also be valid for only a year. As a permanent resident of Canada, you have to keep track of the expiration and renewal of your PR Card. This should be done at least 6 months in advance by submitting an application to the IRCC. You can also obtain a permanent resident travel document (PRTD) in case your PR card expires while you are outside the country. 

You have the liberty of removing yourself from the PR status in Canada by renouncing your PR card through an application. With a PR Card, you are required to stay in Canada for at least two out of five years. Criminal offenses or proved association with anyone who poses a security threat can also result in a loss of PR status. 

Assessment Tools and Resources 

Assessment Tools and Resources

In order to be prepared for the application to immigrate or visiting Canada, a thorough assessment is necessary to determine your current standing and chances of being selected. There are many assessment tools available online, ranging from practice tests and calculations, to guidebooks that can help you understand all the requirements in details. 

These tools also help you calculate the points that determine your eligibility and the likelihood of getting an invitation to apply through the express entry draws. Another way to go about it is with the help of a RCIC that guides an applicant through all the immigration steps and requirements. 

Language Requirements and Tests 

Language Requirements and Tests

Having a strong command over English is the basic requirement to immigrate. However, being bilingual makes your case even stronger, especially if you are fluent in French, as English and French are the two official languages spoken in Canada. You must be fluent in one of the two languages. This is not only good for your application, but will also help you adjust and ease your way into life in Canada with strong communication skills that enhances your quality of life and helps you get good jobs in the country. 

You will have to pass the language test in order to be eligible to apply. The score of these tests also help make your case stronger, and they can be given more than once in order to add points to your CRS. The standard of assessment is through the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB).

  • IELTS For Canada 

IELTS is by far the most common English language test that’s available round the world. It is a test accepted by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), including educational facilities, businesses and professional organizations in the country. There are specific Canadian language requirements that the candidate needs to meet. 

IELTS determine your ability and proficiency in English based on your writing, speaking and reading, all of which are assessed within a given time frame. While IELTS has an Academic Training as well as General Training, the latter is acceptable for immigration while Academic IELTS can be given for student or professional applications. There are many online courses that can be taken for preparation to give IETLS. Your country may also have IELTS courses that can assess your performance and help in improvement so that you can get a good score. You can find sample test questions from previous exams online as well, or get a book that guides you through the preparation. 

->Learn more about IELTS here.

  • TEF & TCF For Canada 

TEF & TCF are international benchmark tests that the Canadian government accepts for immigration. They test an individual’s knowledge and proficiency in the French language.

For those who have strong hold of the language and native French speakers can take those tests. The immigration tests have an oral, reading and writing components that must be completed within the allotted time. The preparation for TEF or TCF can be done online or through a course program in your country. The tests are held round the year and don’t require any specific qualification for eligibility as long as you are over 16 years old. 

->Learn more about TEF & TCF and the difference between them here.

  • CELPIP For Canada 

Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) is accepted by the IRCC for immigration, as well as professional designations and citizenship applications. This is a very convenient test for immigration as it is delivered through computer and can be taken in a single sitting with a personal timer. 

The test focuses on assessment of English language in a North American accent, and the results are delivered fast. Depending on your requirements, you can give the General Test or General LS Test. General Test assess the listening, reading, writing and speaking skills and is ideal for immigration, whereas General LS test is for listening and speaking only, and used for citizenship applications and professional designations. You can prepare for CELPIP through online study material or taking courses.

Immigration Opportunities for Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

Canadian Experience Class
If you have stayed in Canada as a temporary resident for study or work purposes, it adds towards making your case stronger for immigration and permanent residency. This is the reason we have focused on temporary residency procedures, so that those who are interested in gaining some experience before applying for immigration can make use of this program and strengthen their chances. 

It also gives you the chance to survey the market and get accustomed to the lifestyle and opportunities that Canada has to offer. As it is essentially an Express Entry system, the costs and general procedure is essentially the same, with a few perks that greatly affect your chances of being invited. 

  • Eligibility 

The Canadian Experience Class is for those foreign workers who have at least a year of skilled work experience while staying in Canada. You are required to have gained this experience within the last three years of your immigration application in order to qualify. 

  • Application Process 

The application process for Canadian Experience Class is pretty straightforward, and makes use of the Express Entry system. The application is submitted online after the applicant makes a profile and has enough CRS points to enter the pool. Of course, the experience alone can’t help you if you don’t meet the language requirements and additional documentations and requirements for express entry mentioned above. 

  • Benefits of Prior Experience in Canada

Having a work experience within Canada is highly valued for immigration purposes and makes your case stronger, as long as you don’t have a negative feedback from the employer or a criminal record/immigration offense. It adds more points to your CRS score, greatly increasing the chances that your profile will be selected from the Express Entry draws. Follow this for more tips on how to improve your CRS score.

The documentation required for Canadian Experience Class is also less as compared to other applications, so you can get the case submitted soon and immigrate in as less as 4 months! As a bonus, you also won’t need to submit proof of settlement funds.

Immigration Opportunities for Skilled Workers and Traders 

Skilled Workers overview

As mentioned above, immigration procedures and selection of candidates is largely focused on the economic stability and financial growth of Canada. Skilled workers and traders are the backbone of economy, and are invited in large numbers every year to stay and work in Canada with permanent residency status.

There are several programs that fall under Express Entry that can be used by those who have completed post-secondary education, and have work experience in a professional, managerial, and technical or trades sector, as well as experienced tradesperson. 

Federal Skilled Worker Class (FSWC)

Federal Skilled Worker This is by far the most common express entry program used by individuals all around the world. You can expect the same cost and duration of processing as with express entry. 

  • Eligibility 

Young and well educated applicants with professional and skilled working experience can apply for immigration to Canada from all parts of the world. There is no age limit for application, but it goes without saying that young individuals are preferred.

  • Application Process 

Those eligible to apply have to make an express entry profile and enter the pool after the assessment. Workers are assessed by an FSWC points system, and the score should be 67 points or higher out of 100. These points are evaluated based on the applicant’s language skills, education, work experience, age, job offers (if any) in Canada and adaptability points. 

If your points fall below 67, don’t lose heart as there’s always a chance to improve and bring them up by strengthening one or more of the evaluation factors. For instance, you can score better in your language test by improving the language skill or learning French, getting a higher education degree, certificate or diploma, or applying for jobs to get a job offer in Canada. 

  • Benefits of FSWC 

Your chances for invitation are enhanced exponentially by applying through the Federal Skilled Worker Class, as it is a preferred pathway for immigration to fill the labor gap in Canada. A huge number of skilled workers are invited to Canada every year and provided with great employment opportunities to make life better for themselves and their families. 

Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC)

As its name suggests, this program is for those who have experience and skills in the trade sector. Tradespersons from any corner of the world can immigrate to Canada by making use of this program. The applications are processed through Express Entry system, therefore you can expect the same cost and duration as with the standard express entry. 

  • Eligibility 

All those who have the necessary qualifications of post-secondary education and experience in trades can apply for immigration though the Federal Skilled Trades Class. You will still need to meet all requirements of express entry besides experience as a tradesperson. Individuals that are younger are more likely to get selected because of a higher CRS score. 

  • Application Process 

Those who are eligible to apply need to make an express entry profile and submit all the necessary documents required for express entry online. 

  • Benefits of FSTC

Firstly, it strengthens your express entry profile so that you are more likely to get selected in the express entry draws. Furthermore, IRCC occasionally conducts draws that are program-specific, and only include profiles of Federal Skilled Trades Class. The CRS cut off point is also much lower for these draws, so that more workers are recruited to immigrate to Canada. 

A great way to make your case strong and be eligible for this program is to get a job offer in your area of trade for an employer in Canada. This adds to the CRS points and gives you a promised employment opportunity. Language ability criteria is set lower for this program too as compared to the Federal Skilled Worker Class and Canada Experience Class applicants. 

Family Class Immigration Programs 

Family Immigration overview 

Canada welcomes individual’s dependent of principal applicants, permanent residents and citizens residing in Canada. There are several Family Class Immigration Programs that can be used for successful sponsorship and immigration to Canada. Click on the links below to learn more about them. 

  • Sponsorship of Spouse and Common-Law Partner
If you are a spouse or common-law partner (cohabited for at least 12 months) of a permanent resident or citizen in Canada, you can immigrate through this program as long as you provide an authentic proof of the relationship. 
  • Those who reside outside of Canada can immigrate through Outland sponsorship route. According to this, the application is submitted in the visa office of the home country/country of residence of the sponsored person. 
  • If you are already in Canada on temporary resident or visit, you can apply through Inland sponsorship route and get an open work permit to stay in the country until the immigration process is successful. This gives you the advantage of staying and working in Canada while your PR status in underway. 
  • The application costs around $1,050, and can take 12 months or under. 

->Read more about how to sponsor your spouse/partner to Canada.

  • Parent and Grandparent Program 

If you the parent or grandparent of permanent resident or citizen of Canada, you can apply for immigration through this program. 

  • For a set period of time, Canadian government allows sponsors to submit the ‘Interest to Sponsor’ form online. When this period ends, a selection is made from the submitted applications for invitation. Not everyone is selected through this process, and some can be invited later as well. 
  • While most countries do not consider the parents and grandparents as dependents, Canada allows the PR and citizens to invite them under this program through legal means. 
  • The cost for application is around $1,050, and it can take 20 – 24 months to process. 
  • Those who don’t get selected/ feel unhappy about the wait time can get Super Visas. This is a unique visitor visa for parents and grandparents that can be submitted any time and doesn’t have an annual quota, with processing time of just a few weeks to months. Super Visa doesn’t offer PR status or authorize the individual to work or have the same health/social benefits as PR and citizens. 

-> Read more about Family Sponsorship in Canada.

  • Dependent Children 

IRCC received application without set time limit for dependent children of PR and citizens under 21 years of age. It is also eligible for adopted children as long as the adoption/ familial relationship between the sponsor and the dependent children can be proved. The processing time depends on the country from where you are applying, and costs around $1,050. 

Immigration to Quebec 

Immigration to Quebec overview 

Quebec is a French speaking province in Canada, famous for the city Montreal. It selects its own economic immigrants, who get the Quebec Selection Certificate (CSQ) through which they can apply for PR. 

  • Eligibility 

Skilled workers can apply under the Quebec Skilled Worker Program, and foreign students, graduates and workers in Quebec can apply under the Quebec Experience Program. Check the links below to explore the various programs in Quebec. 

  • Application Process 

Eligible candidates who are fluent in French can apply from one of the many pathways for immigration in Quebec. Quebec government has a fee of $812 for the principal applicant, and $174 for spouse and/or dependent children. After obtaining a CSQ (which takes around 6 months), the process for permanent residency application is essentially the same as mentioned above. 

  • Quebec Immigrant Investor Program 

As the name suggests, individuals looking to make passive investments in Quebec can apply for this program. Applicants are expected to make 5-year term investment of $1,200,000 along with a subsidiary of Investissement Quebec. The investment agreement has to be submitted with the application. 

Certain brokers and trust companies offer the chance of financing the investment, and the application can cost around $15,763 for the principal applicant. The processing time for this program is considerably long, and can take up to 54 months. 

  • Quebec Entrepreneur Program 

Individuals with entrepreneur spirit and experienced business owners looking to acquire or create a business in Quebec can apply though this program. You are required to have a net asset of at least $300,000 along with two years of experience. Application fee is $1,099 for the principal applicant, and processing time is 54 months. 

  • Quebec Self-Employed Program 

If you are a self-employed worker and have a net asset of at least $100,000 with at least two years of experience in your profession of trade, you can apply under this program. The application fee is $1,099 for principal applicant and the processing time is 54 months. 

-> Everything you need to know on Immigration to Quebec

Provincial Nomination Program (PNP)

PNP overview 

A candidate can also apply through the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). For this, you have to meet the minimum requirements of a select territory or province that conduct their own streams to nominate applicants for PR. Each province/territory have their own set of requirements to ensure that you can be an active member that contributes towards the strengthening of their economy. 

PNP works almost the same way as Express Entry while boasting a two-step pathway including eligibility for provincial nomination, followed by application for PR to the federal government..

->Follow this link to learn more about PNP.

Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program 

This is an immigration program for the Atlantic provinces of Canada which include Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Labrador and Newfoundland. There are three main pathways of entry though this program. These include the Atlantic High-Skilled Program, the Atlantic Intermediate-Skilled Program and the Atlantic International Graduate Program. Employers don’t need an LMIA for job offers to employees under this program. The application fee costs around $825 and the process takes 6 months or under. Follow this link to learn more about AIPP.

Start-up Visa for Entrepreneurs 

Business Immigration 
Individuals with the spirit to innovate businesses and startups in Canada to generate job opportunities can apply for immigration through this program. It is a relatively new program that falls under the business immigration pathway. 

  • Applicants need the support of designated organizations, meet language requirements and provide proof of funds for settlement in Canada. 
  • Obtaining a Letter of Support and Commitment Certificate from the said organization for short-term work, before the PR application. 
  • For PR application, the individual must provide proof of active and ongoing management of business and its incorporation in Canada. 
  • It is a great opportunity for entrepreneurs to establish a strong business in Canada and generate revenues. 
  • Federal application fees is $1,575, and the process takes 12 to 16 months.

-> Everything you need to know about business immigration to Canada here.

Immigration Programs for Refugees and Humanitarian Resettlement 

Refugees and Humanitarian

Individuals who have fled their home countries due to fear of persecution can seek asylum in Canada under this program. This is a well-renowned program who welcomes tens of thousands of refugees to start life anew in the Great White North. There are two main programs under this category. 

  • The Refugee and Humanitarian Resettlement Program 

This program is for those people who are outside Canada. The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in combination with private sponsors identify refugees in need for resettlement and a new home. This means that the refugees can’t apply directly, and need to be identified through the appropriate channels, after which their case is processed depending on their country of residence. 

  • In-Canada Asylum Program

This program applies to individuals seeking refugee protection claims from within Canada due to a hostile and abusive environment. It also extends relief to individuals who have a well-founded fear of persecution, unusual and unjust punishments or risk of torture back by returning to their home countries. 

RCIC Services 

Get Professional Advice

For further guidance and consultation, we recommend getting the services of a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC). RCICs are legally authorized representatives that help candidates obtain the visa they are eligible for, and guide them through the various immigration policies in place. 

By simplifying the process for you and being there for each step, an RCIC makes sure that candidates are not overwhelmed or confused. Think of them as more like a personal assistant who’s there to make your work easy!

There are many benefits of hiring an RCIC for your visa application:

  • A legally trained RCIC knows all the requirements, including annual quota system and the best possible ways to increase your chances of being selected. They can also guide you about the visa that’s most suitable for you, especially for those who have dependents. For express entry, candidates can often overlook unclaimed points that can give their case that final push of being selected from the express entry pool. An RCIC will make sure your case is as stronger as it can be for a successful visa application. 
  • RCIC agents have undergone a rigorous selection process, and are required to renew their license every year. This means that they have all the updated information with a strict code of conduct. 
  • An RCIC is in a position to coordinate and mediate processes between you and your Canadian employer or the Immigration Authorities. This is much easier than getting in touch with a consulate or embassy yourself. They’ll also help you construct a thriving and competitive immigration strategy, and widen your immigration opportunities. 
  • Now comes the best part. No tedious paperwork to go through, all of it will be taken care for you by your RCIC! This means that everything will be ready to go, and you won’t have to worry about meeting tight deadlines or worrying about submissions. From attestations to credentials optimization, everything can be processed easily through your RCIC.
  • The job of an RCIC doesn’t stop when you receive your invitation letter. They also guide you through the settlement process and what to expect from life in Canada, making it easier to process what’s to come, from budgeting, taxes and general lifestyle to specifics like car insurance and bills. 

–> More about RCIC and recommended Services here

Preparation for Settlement Process 

Once your immigration process is successful, it’s important to prepare yourself for your new life and the settlement process in your new home. This includes reliable resources and classes that get you familiarized with life in Canada, including the residence options and budgeting requirements contingent on the number of dependents including spouse/common-law partners and/or children. 

Proper tools to navigate the Canadian labor market help you secure a job that leads to an established career while having a positive impact on the economy of Canada. Different regions and provinces of Canada are known for different leading work and trade sectors. For instance, employment opportunities are largely focused on agriculture, tourism, and the petroleum industry in Alberta, while investors, businessmen, and entrepreneurs find Ontario a great place for start-ups. 

Make sure to do your research and go for the one that suits your qualifications and experience. Learn about the federal and provincial taxes, health insurance, and the requirements as a PR of Canada to eventually be eligible for citizenship. 

We’re here to help! email us at main(at)canada2036.com with your questions (:

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Arriving in Canada as an international student over a decade ago, Rebecca fell in love with the country and the immigration process. she channeled her years of writing and editing experience into her love for immigration.

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Editor’s Note

You can trust the integrity of our balanced, independent immigration advice. We may, however, receive compensation from the issuers of some products mentioned in this article. Opinions are the author's alone. This content has not been provided by, reviewed, approved or endorsed by any advertiser, unless otherwise noted below.

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