Canada Skilled Worker Immigration
Foreign skilled workers and professionals are greatly needed in Canada.
One of the main goals of Canadian immigration is to welcome skilled newcomers who will contribute to Canada’s growing economy. Skilled workers who settle in Canada on a permanent basis are especially valuable to Canada’s economy and the strength of its workforce.
Successful applicants of the Skilled Worker Immigration programs will receive a Canadian Immigration (permanent resident) Visa, allowing the applicant to immigrate to Canada with his or her family.
As a skilled worker or professional, you have several options to consider. For example, you can either apply under Canada’s Federal Skilled Worker Class. In addition, if you know in which province or territory you plan to reside, you may be able to submit an application through one of the provincial nominee programs. Below, you will find a list of those programs for you to explore.
Many Canadian employers are actively seeking foreign skilled workers to join their workforce as quickly as possible. If you can obtain a job offer from a Canadian employer, you may also qualify for fast-track Canadian immigration application processing.
Federal Skilled Worker
Canada Federal Skilled Worker (Professional) Immigration
This program is for individuals with certain work experience who intend to reside in any province or territory outside of the province of Quebec.
Federal Skilled Worker applications are assessed based on an applicant’s ability to become economically established upon immigration to Canada.
From January 1, 2015, Federal Skilled Worker applications are being processed through the Express Entry Immigration selection system for immigration to Canada. Candidates eligible under the Federal Skilled Worker Program must first make an expression of interest in immigrating to Canada by creating an online Express Entry profile.
In order to be eligible for a Canada Immigration (Permanent Resident) Visa, Federal Skilled Worker applicants must:
- Have at least one year of continuous full-time or equivalent paid work experience in the past 10 years in a skilled occupation (National Occupational Classification skill lever 0, A or B); or
- Qualify for Arranged Employment In Canada with a Labour Market Impact Assessment and a full-time, permanent job offer from a Canadian employer; or
- Have completed a PhD in Canada, or have completed two years of study in Canada towards a PhD, in both cases at a recognized institution; and
- Pass a minimum threshold of language ability in one of Canada’s two official languages, English or French.
In addition, Federal Skilled Worker (Professional) applicants must obtain at least 67 points based on Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s (CIC) immigration selection factors.
Those selection factors are listed below. Click each factor to learn more information:
- Education: Candidates can be awarded up to 25 points for your formal education.
- Language Skills: Candidates can be awarded up to 28 total points (24-first official language, 4-second official language).
- Work Experience:Under this factor, candidates can be awarded up to 15 points for certain paid, skilled work experience that they have acquired in the last 10 years, but they must attain at least a score of 9 points in order to qualify.
- Age: Candidates can be awarded up to 12 points based on their age at the time of applying.
- Arranged Employment: Candidates can be awarded up to 10 points if they have arranged employment in Canada that meets certain requirements.
- Adaptability: Candidates can be awarded up to 10 points for a number of factors that show that they are adaptable to moving to Canada.
Once it has been determined that a candidate meets the eligibility and points requirements, he or she must show that he or she has sufficient settlement funds to support him or herself and any dependents after his or her arrival in Canada. Finally, candidates and their dependents must also undergo medical examinations and obtain security clearances as part of the Canadian immigration application process.
Note, the Canadian government recognizes that the points awarded under the skilled worker selection system do not always accurately reflect an applicant’s chances of successfully establishing themselves in Canada. As a result, Citizenship and Immigration Canada Officers are authorized to use an alternate method of assessing an application. Under the concept of “substituted evaluation”, a Visa Officer may make their own evaluation for the likelihood of the applicant becoming economically established in Canada. This method allows the Visa Officer to accept or refuse the applicant no matter how many points the applicant has achieved.
Quebec Skilled Worker
Applicants who plan to immigrate to the province of Quebec may be eligible to submit an application through this program.
Quebec Immigration – Skilled Worker Program
The Quebec Immigration selection system for Quebec Skilled Workers is designed to indicate which applicants are likely to become economically established upon immigration to Quebec.
Skilled Worker (Professional) applicants who intend to reside in Montreal or in another city or region within the province of Quebec are assessed under a different system than applicants who wish to settle elsewhere in Canada. Below, we provide additional information about this program and give you a better idea of what to expect during the application process.
Important note: guidelines and dates for the QSWP
The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion (MIDI), the government department overseeing immigration to Quebec, has issued the following guidelines:
- Up to 5,000 applications will be accepted during the period June 13 to June 20, 2016. This intake period will be restricted to the approximately 41,000 candidates who had created a Mon projet Québecaccount in January. Mon projet Québec is not scheduled to open for new registrations before the June intake period.
- Up to 5,000 further applications will be accepted over the course of another application intake period, with exact dates to be announced later.
As of January 2016, candidates for immigration to Canada through the QSWP must use the secure space Mon projet Québec in order to submit an application.
Quebec Skilled Worker Eligibility
Applicants who are successful under the Quebec Skilled Worker immigration selection system are issued a Quebec Selection Certificate, which is then followed by a Canadian Permanent Resident (Immigration) Visa. Though applicants to the Quebec Skilled Worker Program are assessed based upon different selection factors than those of the Federal Skilled Worker Class, Citizenship and Immigration Canada acknowledges Quebec’s selection of applicants by issuing permanent resident visas to successful applicants, once medical and criminality background checks have been completed.
In order to qualify for this Quebec Selection Certificate, you must score enough points under the Quebec Immigration selection system that is described below. A single (unmarried) applicant must score at least 49 points based on this system, while an applicant with a spouse or common-law partner must score at least 57 points.
Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)
Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs): Most provinces and territories have created their own skilled worker programs for those intending to live and work in their particular province or territory. These are fast-track Canadian immigration programs that allow candidates to receive a provincial nomination certificate. In most cases, a nomination certificate will allow candidates to immigrate more quickly than through other Canadian immigration programs.
Provincial nomination is an important fast-track option for Canadian permanent residence.
The Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) allow Canadian provinces and territories to nominate individuals who wish to immigrate to Canada and who are interested in settling in a particular province.
Each Canadian province (except Quebec, which has a different selection system) and two territories have their own unique Provincial Nominee Programs. Participating provinces and territories sign agreements with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that allow them to select immigrants who meet the requirements that they have set forth.
Provincial and territorial governments have been using these programs to more effectively and efficiently welcome newcomers to their region. Each PNP is tailored to the province’s/territory’s specific needs to select nominees who will be able to settle into life and work in the region and to effectively contribute to the community. As of 2015, most PNPs contain at least one immigration stream aligned with the federal Express Entry immigration selection system.
PNPs by province/territory