Canada is known for its high standard of living, excellent healthcare, and diverse opportunities for individuals and families looking to start a new chapter in their lives. The Express Entry system is one of the most popular pathways for skilled workers to immigrate to Canada. In this article, we will guide you through the process of moving to Canada with Express Entry, step by step.
What is Express Entry?
Express Entry is an online system used by the Canadian government to manage applications for permanent residence from skilled workers. It is a points-based system that assesses applicants based on various factors such as age, education, work experience, language proficiency, and adaptability. The system aims to select candidates who are likely to succeed economically in Canada.
Why Move to Canada?
Moving to Canada offers numerous benefits. The country provides a high standard of living, excellent healthcare, and a strong economy. Canada is also known for its multicultural society, welcoming immigrants from all over the world. The government invests heavily in education, making it an attractive destination for individuals seeking quality education for themselves and their children.
Eligibility for Express Entry
To be eligible for Express Entry, you must meet the requirements of one of the three federal economic immigration programs:
Skilled Worker Program
The Skilled Worker Program is for individuals with skilled work experience outside of Canada. It assesses applicants based on factors such as education, work experience, language skills, and age. Meeting the minimum requirements is crucial to being eligible for Express Entry.
Skilled Trades Program
The Skilled Trades Program is designed for individuals with experience in a skilled trade occupation. This program aims to address labor shortages in specific industries in Canada. To qualify, you must have at least two years of full-time work experience in a skilled trade and meet the language requirements.
Canadian Experience Class
The Canadian Experience Class is for individuals who have work experience in Canada. To be eligible, you must have at least one year of skilled work experience in Canada and meet the language requirements. This program is especially beneficial for international students who have graduated from Canadian educational institutions.
Creating an Express Entry Profile
To apply for Express Entry, you need to create an online profile. Here’s how to do it:
Gathering Required Documents
Before creating your profile, gather all the necessary documents, such as passport, language test results, education credentials, and proof of work experience. Ensuring you have these documents readily available will streamline the application process.
Completing the Online Profile
Once you have all the required documents, create an Express Entry profile online. You will need to provide details about your education, work experience, language proficiency, and other personal information. Make sure to double-check all the information before submitting the profile.
Calculating the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) Score
After submitting your profile, you will receive a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score based on the information provided. The CRS score determines your rank in the Express Entry pool. The higher your CRS score, the better your chances of receiving an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence.
Improving CRS Score
To improve your CRS score and increase your chances of receiving an ITA, consider the following factors:
Language proficiency is a crucial factor in the CRS score. Taking language tests, such as IELTS or CELPIP for English or TEF for French, can significantly boost your score. Aim for high scores in all language categories.
Having a higher level of education can positively impact your CRS score. If you have completed post-secondary education or obtained additional degrees or certifications, make sure to include them in your profile.
The number of years of work experience and the skill level of your occupation influence your CRS score. Obtaining additional work experience or upgrading your skills can improve your ranking in the Express Entry pool.
Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)
Many Canadian provinces and territories have their own immigration programs called Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs). Obtaining a provincial nomination through a PNP can significantly increase your CRS score and guarantee an ITA.
Receiving an Invitation to Apply (ITA)
The Canadian government conducts regular draws from the Express Entry pool to issue ITAs. If you receive an ITA, you will have a limited time to submit your application for permanent residence. Here’s what you need to know:
How ITAs are Issued
ITAs are issued based on the CRS scores. Candidates with the highest scores receive invitations in each draw. If you receive an ITA, it means you have met the cut-off score for that particular draw.
Accepting the ITA
Upon receiving an ITA, you must accept it within the given timeframe and submit a complete application for permanent residence. Failing to accept the ITA within the specified time will result in the opportunity being lost.
Completing the Permanent Residence (PR) Application
Once you accept the ITA, you need to complete the PR application. This includes several important steps:
Medical Exams and Police Certificates
As part of the PR application process, you and your family members will need to undergo medical examinations to ensure you meet the health requirements. You will also need to obtain police certificates to prove that you have no criminal record.
You must demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to support yourself and your family members in Canada. The amount required depends on the size of your family. It is important to provide accurate and up-to-date financial information.
As part of the PR application, you and your family members may be required to provide biometric information, including fingerprints and a photograph. This helps Canadian authorities verify your identity.
Waiting for PR Confirmation
After submitting your PR application, you will enter a waiting period. The processing times can vary, but the government aims to process most applications within six months. Here are a few important considerations during this period:
While the government strives to process applications as quickly as possible, the actual processing times can vary. It’s important to be patient and regularly check the status of your application through the online portal.
If you included your spouse or dependent children in your application, their applications will be processed at the same time. Make sure to keep them informed about the progress and any additional steps they need to take.
Settling in Canada
Once you receive your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR), it’s time to prepare for your new life in Canada. Here are a few key aspects to consider:
Research housing options in the city or province you plan to settle in. Consider factors such as affordability, proximity to amenities, and access to transportation. Renting initially may be a good option as you explore the area and familiarize yourself with the housing market.
As a new permanent resident, you will be eligible for Canadian healthcare coverage. However, coverage may not start immediately, so it’s essential to arrange private health insurance for yourself and your family until you are eligible for public healthcare.
Joining community groups, attending events, and engaging with local organizations can help you integrate into Canadian society. Building a social network will not only support your personal well-being but also provide opportunities for professional networking and career growth.
Moving to Canada through the Express Entry system can be a life-changing opportunity for skilled workers seeking a brighter future. By understanding the eligibility requirements, creating a strong profile, and continuously improving your CRS score, you can increase your chances of receiving an ITA and eventually achieving permanent residence in Canada.