Are you a working professional wanting PR in Canada? Here’s how you can go about it

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Working in Canada: Canada has been a preferred destination for Indians to migrate to, especially because of its friendly rules of immigration. This is especially true for working professionals. However, many are still unsure about the rules that Canada has in place. Canada, unlike the UK and the US, allows people to get Permanent Residency from the get go. Working professionals who have never worked in Canada before can apply to immigrate to the country with PR using the Express Entry – Federal Skilled Worker Programme pathway. Here’s what you need to know.

Immigration to Canada: Express Entry for skilled workers

The Express Entry Federal Skilled Worker Programme is one of the best ways for working professionals to immigrate to Canada by getting Permanent Residency. There are numerous other work permits, but they do not grant PR at the onset. However, those who apply for the Federal Skilled Worker Programme, if eligible, would be invited to apply for PR.

Much like the UK programme, Canada has a point system for someone to be eligible for further processing of the application.

Working professionals from India to Canada: Eligibility

The Canadian Federal system assesses the eligibility for a skilled worker to apply through this programme based on six factors. Based on the information provided by the applicant, the selection factors are assessed and then an overall score is assigned out of 100. For someone to be eligible for further consideration, a minimum of 67 points are needed.

In case an applicant does not score at least 67 points, they would have to improve their score by undertaking measures like improving language skills, arranging employment in Canada or completing another degree or diploma.

Also read | Want to work in the UK? Understanding the point-based immigration system and points needed to be eligible

The first selection factor is language skills, in which an applicant can score a maximum of 28 points. This is divided into two languages – English and French. The aim is to check if the applicant can effectively communicate in one or both of the official languages of Canada. For language test assessment, a language test approved by Canada needs to be taken. This test would be checking the takers’ skills based on writing, reading, speaking and listening. Of the two languages, one must be tested for being eligible.

The score achieved by the applicant in an approved test is measured against CLB levels for English or NCLC for French. In their first official language, applicants can get a maximum of 24 points, which happens when they score marks equivalent to CLB level 9 or higher in all of the test areas. In all of the areas, the applicant must get at least CLB level 7 to be eligible to apply.

In case an applicant has knowledge of the other official language of Canada, they can take that test as well, and if they get at least CLB level 5 or NCLC level 5 in all of the testing areas, they will get a maximum of 4 points. They will not get any points if they do not have at least CLB level 5 in even one of the testing abilities.

Education is the second selection factor, having a maximum score of 25 points. Applicants who have educational qualifications from outside Canada would need to get an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report for immigration purposes. This report would have to be given by a designation organisation, and it would certify that the qualification is equal to either high school (secondary institution) or post-secondary institution certificate/degree/diploma in Canada.

Work Experience is worth a maximum of 15 points. These points are awarded based on the number of years that a person has worked full time, which is calculated as at least 30 hours of work per week. For part time work to count towards work experience in terms of a year, an applicant has to have worked 15 hours per week for a period of 24 months. However, this has to be work done in skill type 0 or skill levels A or B occupation types of the 2016 National Occupational Classification of Canada.

The work experience counts if it were done either in Canada or abroad, done while the applicant was studying, and/or while they were self employed.

While one year of full time work awards the applicant 9 points, 2-3 years of experience leads to 11 points. 4-5 years of work experience will lead to the applicant getting 13 points, and 6 or more years of experience will fetch maximum, i.e. 15, points for the applicant.

Age is also an important factor for selection, in which an applicant can get maximum points – 12 – if they are between 18 years and 35 years. While an applicant gets 0 points if they are under 18, the points deteriorate by 1 point for every year between 36 years (11 points) to 46 years (1 point). Applicants 47 years or older do not get any points.

If the applicant has arranged employment in Canada, i.e. having a valid job offer of at least 1 year before applying for the programme, the applicant can fetch up to 10 points. The job offer has to be for continuous, paid and full-time work for at least a year and it must not be seasonal. This job offer should also be among occupation skill type 0 or in skill levels A or B. The authorities must believe that the applicant has the ability to work the job that is being offered to them, and/or of the fact that if the occupation is regulated in Canada, the applicant would be able to become certified or licensed in the job skill.

However, there are also four situations, of which one must apply to the applicant for the points to be awarded the 10 points. These situations are based on whether the applicant is currently working in Canada on a work permit or not and each situation has a set of requirements that the applicant must meet.

The last factor is adaptability, which can fetch a maximum of 10 points. These are based on how well the applicant and their common-law partner or spouse are likely to settle into the country based on the partner’s language level, past studies in Canada of self or partner, self or partner’s past work in Canada, or relatives in Canada.

Express Entry and PR in Canada

Once the applicant has filled out the online application regarding eligibility for the Federal Skilled Worker Programme, they would need to get all the required documents, like language test results, job offers or education assessments, among others. Post this, they would need to submit their complete application, including biometrics.

The applicant would need to ensure that the application has been submitted completely and correctly. The authorities then verify the information provided by the applicant and decide based on whether the applicant meets the eligibility and if they can be admissible in Canada based on their background checks, police certificates and medical exam.

In case the application has been rejected or refused, the applicant would need to go through the entire application process again. If approved, the applicant must ensure that they have paid their right of permanent residence fee. Post approval, the applicant will receive a COPR or Confirmation of Permanent Residence as well as a PR visa.