Are you a skilled professional and are interested in moving to Canada? If so, one of the options that may be available to you is the Express Entry program. Under this program, Canada is looking for skilled workers with qualifying work experience and education to contribute to Canada’s growing economy. If you think this might be you and you would like to know what you need to do to apply, this blog may be for you.
The Express Entry program is an online application system used by Canada immigration to process permanent residence applications for skilled workers. The first step is for Applicants to create an online profile through CIC’s website. You will be asked to give information about your skilled work experience, language ability and education. You will then be given points based on the information you provide and added into a pool with other candidates where you will be ranked against each other based on the points received.
At different times of the month, there will be a round of invitations issued to candidates in the pool with the highest rankings for that round. After receiving an invitation to apply for permanent residence, candidates will have 60 days to submit documents that support the information you submitted in the profile. It is very important that the documents you submit at the second stage matches the information you entered in your profile. If it is determined that you gave false information or left out important details, your application could be refused, you be found inadmissible to Canada or you could be barred from applying to Canada for 5 years.
Processing times for these applications is generally 6 months. If after reviewing your submitted documents, CIC determines that you still meet the eligibility requirements, you will be approved for permanent residence.
In order to be eligible for Express Entry, you must have at least 1 year of full-time skilled work experience or 2-year part time equivalent. The work experience must have been acquired within the last 10 years and it can either be Canadian or foreign work experience. The skilled work experience must be either NOC 0, A or B.
You will be required to complete one of Immigration, Rrefugee, Citizenship and Canada’s (IRCC) approved language tests that will assess your language ability in writing, reading, listening and speaking. For the language test, you can take any of the following: Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP), International English Language Testing System (IELTS), Test de connaisance du francais (TEF Canada) or Test de connaisance du francais (TCF Canada) language test. Your score must be the equivalence of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7.
You will also receive scores for your education. If you have foreign education, you will need to have your credentials assessed by a qualifying agency such as World Educational Services.
You will be given additional points if you have a valid job offer from an employer. However, having a job offer is not required, unless you would like to qualify under the Federal Skilled Trades category.
You must be admissible to Canada. You will need to complete a police background check and medicals.
There are three categories under the Express Entry Program – Federal Skilled Worker, Canadian Experience Class and Federal Skilled Trades. After completing your profile, the points you receive based on the information you provided will be used to determine which of the programs you will be invited to apply under. Your information may qualify you to be eligible for more than one program, but you be issued an invitation to apply under only one program.
Minimum requirements to be eligible for this program include having the required language levels. Applicants must have a CLB of 5 for speaking and listening and CLB 4 for reading and writing. The skilled work must fall under the key group of NOC B. The candidate must have 2 years of qualifying skilled work experience within the last 5 years – either full-time or part-time work. Candidates must have a valid full-time job offer for a total period of at least 1 year or a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial, territorial or federal authority.
Those qualifying for invitations under this program must have skilled work experience in the same type of job as the job that you want to use for your immigration application. This is called the primary occupation. The skilled work experience must be either NOC 0, A or B, and it must have been acquired in the last 10 years. The qualifying work experience must be at least 1-year continuous work experience of equal amounts of part time.
The qualifying language score is a CLB of 7 on reading, writing, speaking and listening. Applicants will also need to have their education assessed by an educational credential assessment agency. Under this category, unless you are currently able to work legally in Canada or have a valid job offer, you must show that you have enough money to settle in Canada. The amount of money required for settlement will be determined by your family size.
To be eligible under this program, you will need to have at least 1 year of skilled work experience within the last three years prior to applying. The work may be full-time, or an equal amount of part-time work experience gained in Canada legally. Your skilled work experience must be either a NOC 0, A or B. There is no education requirement under this category. If you have foreign work experience, you must have your credentials assessed for its Canadian equivalency by an education credential assessment agency approved by IRCC. The eligible language requirement is that qualifying candidates must have scored a CLB 7 for NOC A or 0 jobs or CLB 5 for NOC B jobs.
Applications under express entry can be complicated and time consuming. Applicants are refused each year for reasons ranging from not providing required documents, using the wrong NOC codes, among other reasons. At the second stage of the application, it is critical that applicants have support documents that match the information they provided under their profile. At Akrami & Associates, we have helped many clients receive approval for their express entry applications, even the most complex cases. If you are having a difficult time putting your application together or do not know where to start, you can call us at Akrami & Associates at 416-477-2545 and we can help you. If you simply want to learn about the application process, you can also book a consultation with one of our immigration professionals for more advise.