With Canada beginning to look ahead to relaxing the rules on crossing into the country, it’s expected that immigration will increase as well. With that in mind, we have put together a brief overview of various pathways to immigration to Canada below. Each method has its own regulations and rules, and so consulting with a skilled immigration lawyer is encouraged, but below you’ll find some of the most common methods for immigrating to Canada on a permanent basis.
The Express Entry program is the primary way that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada accepts skilled worker applications. The Express Entry program is a competitive, invitation-based program that has draws that invite applicants to apply for permanent residence approximately every two weeks. There are three specific express entry pathways to choose from:
If you want to come to Canada as a skilled worker, you can apply for express entry under the Federal Skilled Worker Program. Applicants applying under the Federal Skilled Worker Program do not require prior Canadian work experience. Rather, there is a points system on which applicants are graded based on six selection factors including age, education, language, skilled work experience, existing job offers and adaptability. In order to qualify under this program, an applicant must score at least 67 out of 100 points. How the points are allocated and considered by immigration officials are detailed on the Canadian government website so anyone can do a preliminary check to see if they would have a chance to qualify. However, it is important to note that if you are applying for this category as in the Express Entry pool, your application will be ranked using the Comprehensive Ranking System (“CRS”) used to evaluate Express Entry applicants. The CRS includes many of the same selection factors and is used for all Express Entry candidates.
Another way to come to Canada with Express Entry is under the Federal Skilled Trades Program. In order to be eligible under this program, applicants must work in one of the following trades:
The Canadian Experience Class is for skilled workers who have Canadian work experience and want to become permanent residents. The Canadian Experience Class is different from the Federal Skilled Worker Program in that applicants MUST have some Canadian work experience in order to apply. Applicants must have worked for at least one year in the last three years preceding their application in order to apply. Applicants must meet certain language communications levels, and their skills must qualify them for managerial or professional roles, or a skilled trade. Notably, there is no education requirement under this class, but education can increase an applicant’s competitiveness once they are in the applicant pool.
Another potential way to immigrate to Canada is through the Provincial Nomination Program. In Canada, the provinces control some of their own immigration through the Provincial Nomination Programs. If you are looking to move to a specific province, you can apply through Express Entry by contacting the province with your application, or by indicating on an Express Entry application that you are interested in immigrating to a specific province. All of the provinces and territories except for Quebec and Nunavut participate in the program. Each province is allowed to set out various streams under which applicants can apply for residency.
Another way to come to Canada is through family sponsorships. If you establish that you can support a spouse or child financially, you can sponsor them to come to Canada. Additionally, it is important to demonstrate that no sponsored family member will require social assistance once they are in Canada.
You can sponsor a sibling, niece, nephew, or grandchild if they meet the following criteria:
You can also sponsor one relative of any age, related by blood or adoption, so long as you have no living relative closer than the person you want to sponsor, who you could sponsor instead, and you do not have any relatives who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
Garson Immigration Law is a firm exclusively dedicated to the practice of immigration law. We successfully guide clients through the immigration process, with an eye toward the ever-changing regulations in light of COVID-19. We will work to find an effective solution for your individual immigration needs and ensure you are positioned for success with respect to your application.
The immigration lawyers at Garson Immigration Law are continuing to monitor the immigration fallout in relation to COVID-19 on both sides of the border and will provide updates as the situation develops. If you have any questions about your potential classification as essential or about how you should comply with the changing regulations, do not hesitate to reach out to us online or by calling us at 416-321-2860.
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