Selecting the optimal immigration pathway for you and navigating it successfully through to Canada are vital parts of successful immigration.
A qualified Canadian immigration attorney or consultant can assist in helping to select your optimal path while providing guidance throughout the process.
Express Entry is one of the easiest and fastest ways to enter Canada; however, other avenues may exist as well, including family sponsorship and provincial nominee programs.
At present, the Express Entry system continues to be the swiftest and most straightforward route for skilled workers and their families to relocate to Canada. Launched in 2015, this entirely digital immigration selection process holds a central role in all federal immigration categories related to skilled workers and business ventures seeking entry into Canada.
The government selects candidates for permanent residency through a two-step selection process, beginning with an online expression of interest for one of three federal economic immigration programs – Federal Skilled Worker Program, Canadian Experience Class (CEC), or Provincial Nominee Programs.
Once you have established eligibility to join the pool, the next step in the process will depend on your score on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). Your CRS score is calculated based on your responses to questions about age, education, employment history and adaptability as well as language ability and having an accompanying person who will join you in Canada.
If your CRS score meets or surpasses a threshold level, you will be invited to apply for permanent residence in the next round of immigration draws. If not, try improving it through language tests, additional eligible professional work experience/education, or getting an offer of employment from within Canada.
If you are an experienced worker looking to move to Canada, speaking with experienced Canadian immigration specialists could help determine whether the Express Entry program and its requirements is the best way for you. They will explain all of your options as well as assisting in making a determination if that path is the one.
Quebec Skilled Worker Program
If you are an experienced skilled worker looking to relocate to Canada, Quebec could be your best bet. Renowned for its world-class facilities and diverse culture as well as an easy migration process, Quebec provides an innovative point system called Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP) for selecting immigrant applicants.
Under this system, foreign skilled workers can apply for permanent residency by declaring their interest through Arrima – an online portal. Once your profile has been selected by Arrima, the Ministry for Immigration, Francophonie et Inclusion (MIDI) will invite you to submit a full application.
Once chosen by MIDI, you may submit your application with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada – IRCC with all required documents. If approved, your Quebec Certificate of Selection (CSQ) will arrive and you can begin planning for life in this beautiful Canadian province.
A Canadian Services Qualification Certificate (CSQ) is essential in your Canadian immigration journey, providing eligibility to work and reside in Canada. Therefore, acquiring this provincial document as soon as possible is of utmost importance for its successful completion.
In order to qualify for a CSQ, it is necessary to meet the minimum requirements set out by Quebec’s points system. This system awards points for age, education, language skills and work experience as well as your health and safety record; hence why it is vital that you maintain an unblemished record throughout this process. Also note that Quebec is predominantly French-speaking region therefore speaking French will count more heavily towards your score than English will.
Atlantic Immigration Pilot
The Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIPP) is an employer-led initiative operating in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
This program enables authorized employers to recruit skilled foreign workers for positions that they are unable to fill locally. Introduced in 2017, this three-year trial initiative aims to facilitate population expansion, foster the development of skilled labor pools, and enhance employment rates within the Atlantic provinces.
AIPP requires applicants to fulfill certain criteria, including work experience, education and language ability. Furthermore, applicants must submit a job offer from a designated employer as well as an individualized settlement plan for themselves and their family members.
Once accepted into the program, participants are assigned their designated employer while also receiving support via the partnership with regional service provider organizations.
AIPP candidates tend to experience less hassle during the immigration process. This can be particularly helpful for those unfamiliar with Canada’s immigration system or its various programs; it should also be noted that which immigration category an immigrant arrives under can have an important bearing on long-term residency and integration into Canadian society.
Since AIPP transitioned from pilot status to permanent status, several changes have been implemented to make it simpler and clearer. For instance, only one program stream–Atlantic Class–is offered and applicants must fulfill specific education and work experience criteria; additionally completing an English and French proficiency test will now be necessary in order to apply.
While these changes are small in scale, they can make an enormous impactful statement about your ability to manage AIPP application process successfully. It should also be noted that various fees are associated with applying through employer sponsorship of visa applications.
Temporary Foreign Work Permit
Canada provides numerous pathways for temporary workers, depending on your occupation and country of origin. Employers use these programs to fill labour shortages while prioritizing Canadian citizens and permanent residents as employees. Depending on which program you select, you may need a temporary work permit, employer-sponsored visa (TRV) or eTA application form submitted with your application for work in Canada.
To qualify for a work permit in Canada, you must secure employment from an eligible Canadian employer and fulfill all requirements set out by their program. In many instances, having a Social Insurance Number (SIN) also helps identify you and establish eligibility for government benefits.
Before hiring you, your employer must obtain an LMIA from the federal government. An LMIA certifies that they tried and were unsuccessful in finding someone within Canada qualified and available for this position. If one is not available then either find another job which fits better with your skills and experiences or leave Canada.
On the International Recruitment and Citizenship Centre’s (IRCC) website, temporary foreign worker jobs can be located by searching. Search results will indicate whether the job is based in Canada and whether it allows temporary foreign workers. You can also use MyCIC tool of the IRCC to check up on your immigration status and information.
If your work permit expires or if you need to change its conditions, contact IRCC immediately and request an extension or status change – before your work permit lapses! Their website provides detailed instructions for this process.
Provincial Nominee Program
The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) allows provinces and territories to nominate individuals who meet certain qualifications: education, work experience and genuine intent to settle in one or more Canadian provinces or territories.
Each province/territory determines their own criteria based on its own immigration needs – for instance some may prioritize filling labor shortages in agriculture industries while others seek candidates with French-language proficiency. Since January 2015, some provinces have linked their PNP streams with Express Entry so as to accept selected applicants under Express Entry’s Express Entry program.
In order to qualify for provincial nomination, individuals need to meet specific criteria, including educational background, language proficiency, age, and professional experience. Certain provinces may also mandate applicants to successfully complete an English or French language proficiency test. Furthermore, candidates are required to sign documents affirming their commitment to establishing permanent residency within the province of their choice.
If chosen, IRCC will send out an invitation to apply for permanent residence. Once received, all required documents must be sent directly to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), where all medical exams, security, and criminal background checks will take place.
As is evident from this list of Canadian immigration pathways, selecting the appropriate option for yourself and your family can be daunting. If you need assistance selecting one, reach out to RCIC’s team of experienced immigration consultants; our over 80 immigration streams offer something perfect for every individual profile and goal – get in touch today for a complimentary assessment – we are ready to help make Canada your home!