What is the Federal Skilled Trades Program

What is the Federal Skilled Trades Program?

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As part of an effort to streamline immigration for certain skilled foreign nationals, Canada enacted an Express Entry System for processing and approving immigration applications. The Federal Skilled Trades Program is among several programs overseen by the Express Entry System. While it is not the only immigration pathway for interested skilled trade workers, it can be the quickest way to permanent Canadian residency.

What is the Federal Skilled Trades Program

Like other Express Entry Programs, applicants interested in the Canadian Federal Skilled Trades Program must express their interest by completing an online Express Entry profile. Candidate profiles will be evaluated and given a Comprehensive Ranking Score (CRS), which will determine their ranking in the Express Entry Pool of all interested applicants. Candidates with the highest CRS scores will be offered an Invitation to Apply for the Federal Skilled Trades Program.

Eligibility to Apply for The Express Entry Federal Skilled Trades Program

Applicants to the Federal Skilled Trades Program must have skilled trade experience in one of the following National Occupation Classification trades:

  • Major Group 72 – construction, industrial, and electrical trades
  • Major Group 73 – equipment operation and maintenance trades
  • Major Group 82 – technical and supervisorial jobs in natural resources, agriculture, or associated field
  • Major Group 92 – central control operators and processing, manufacturing, and utility supervisors
  • Minor Group 632 – chefs and cooks
  • Minor Group 633 – butchers and bakers

The Major Groups include various Minor Group subcategories.

There are several other conditions relating to language ability, work experience, and capacity to settle that must also be met to be deemed eligible for the Canadian Federal Skilled Trade Program. They include:

  • Minimum language abilities in either English or French
    • CLB (NCLC) 5 speaking and listening
    • CLB (NCLC) 4 reading and writing
  • A minimum 2-years full-time, or 24-month equivalent part-time work, in your listed skilled trade accumulated within the last 5-years
  • Meet the Canadian job requirements for your skilled trade as listed under the NOC, except for those requiring a certificate of qualification
  • A minimum 1-year term job offer for full-time employment in your NOC listed trade OR
  • A provincial, territorial, or federally issued certificate of qualification in your skilled trade
  • Proof of enough funds to settlement. This amount will depend on your domestic situation and the number of dependants.

Applicants must also be admissible to Canada under Canadian Immigration Laws.

How to Apply to the Canadian Federal Skilled Trade Program – Step-By-Step Instructions

Step 1: Once you have determined your eligibility for the Canadian Skilled Trades Program, it is recommended that you assemble all the required documents. These documents may include but are not limited to:

  • Travel document or passport
  • Language test results
  • Verification of work experience
  • Proof of job offer or certificate of qualification (if applicable)
  • Confirmation of settlement funds
  • Police certificate
  • Medical exam results
  • Documents supporting your marital status and dependent children

Not all these documents will be required to complete your profile, but some may take longer to get.

Step 2: Complete and submit an online Express Entry Profile.

Step 3: After your profile has been submitted, it remains valid for one year. During this time, you are able to modify your profile, including adding or updating skills that may improve your CRS score (like adding a second language or educational qualification)

Step 4: Invitations to Apply are sent out bi-monthly. If you receive an ITA, you have 90 days to submit your completed application. You must answer all questions truthfully and to the best of your ability. Knowingly providing false information may result in your being deemed inadmissible to Canada.

Step 5: If you do not receive an ITA within the 1-year time frame, your profile is removed. If you wish to re-enter the pool, you may submit another profile.

Get Help with Your Federal Skilled Trades Application

A Federal Skilled Trades application is a lengthy document with precise requirements, details, and deadlines. If you need help completing the application, if your application has been refused, or are looking for ways to improve an existing application, the immigration consultants at Elaar Immigration can help. Our professionally trained Canadian immigration consultants have an in-depth understanding of Canadian Express Entry and the specific requirements under each stream, and we will ensure your application is complete and correct.

How to Extend a Post Graduate Work Permit in Canada

How to Extend a Post-Graduate Work Permit in Canada?

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A Post Graduate Work Permit allows individuals who have studied in Canada to remain in the country and work after completing their program or degree. Interested applicants have 180 days after receiving their final grades to apply to the program. The eligible duration of the permit will depend on the length of the applicant’s program of study.

How to Extend a Post Graduate Work Permit in Canada

Can Post Graduate Work Permit Be Extended?

The Post Graduate Work Permit Canada is a one time permit that cannot be renewed; however, in certain specific cases, it is possible to receive an extension:

  • You were eligible for a longer Post Graduate Work Permit but did not receive the full-time period due to your passport expiring sooner. You can apply for a PGWP extension with your new passport for up to the term of your original eligibility.
  • If you are currently in the Express Entry application pool for permanent residency, you may qualify for a bridging open work permit. This bridging permit allows you to remain in Canada and work legally until receiving your application decision.

PGWP Requirements

Before you apply for the PGWP, interested candidates must ensure that they have a valid study permit or visitor visa; OR have submitted an application to change their permit from student to visitor or extend a student permit AND have not yet received a response.

Eligible candidates must then meet the following criteria for the PGWP:

  • Graduated from a study program at a designated public or private learning institution that was a minimum of 8 months and led to a recognized degree, diploma, or certificate
  • Maintained full-time student status throughout your study except for your final semester, which may be part-time

Candidates will not receive a PGWP if they:

  • Have previously received a PGWP
  • Studied English or French as a second language, pursued general interest studies or self-improvement courses
  • Participated in some Global Affairs Canada funded programs, received certain scholarships or participated in specific exchange programs
  • Completed the majority of their program through distance learning
  • Studied at a non-Canadian institution located in Canada

What GPA Do I Need for A Post Graduate Work Permit in Canada?

Unlike a student work permit in Canada, which requires a minimum GPA of 2.0, there is no minimum GPA requirement for the PGWP.

Duration of Work Permit After Study in Canada

The eligible term of a Post Graduate Work Permit Canada will depend on the study program’s length. A program lasting a minimum of 8 months may enable an applicant to receive a Post Graduate Work Permit of less than 1-year, while a 2-year degree program may qualify for a work permit of up to 3 years.

COVID-19 Exceptions to PGWP

Due to the ongoing global pandemic, the PGWP program has been updated. Students may now be eligible for a Post Graduate Work Permit if:

  • You completed some or all your studies at a designated institution through distance learning either in Canada OR outside Canada
  • If you continued to study outside of Canada, you must be eligible for all other PGWP conditions
  • You had to pause your 2020 winter, spring, or summer semesters due to COVID-19

As of January 27, 2021, if your PGWP has expired or will expire soon, you could qualifiy for an open work permit of up to 18 months.

Elaar Immigration has helped many students live, study and work in Canada. Whether you are currently in a Canadian study program and are looking for permanent residency options or outside of Canada looking to immigrate, our dedicated immigration consultants can help you find your ideal pathway.

How the BC Provincial Nominee Program is Drawing Talent into British Columbia

By | Blog, Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) | No Comments

British Columbia is one of Canada’s most scenic, culturally diverse, and economically prosperous provinces. Each year, the province welcomes over 40,000 new immigrants, the second-highest number in Canada after Ontario. For those looking to immigrate to British Columbia, the BC Provincial Nominee Program offers three distinct pathways to permanent Canadian Residency.

Overview of the BC Provincial Nominee Program

The BC PNP offers more varied and inclusive Provincial Nominee Programs than most other provinces. Under the BC PNP, three immigration pathways can lead to permanent residency – BC Express Entry, BC Skills Immigration, and an entrepreneur immigration stream.

  • BC PNP Skilled Immigration – This immigration stream is intend to open BC immigration up to those with specific skills required to help fill employee shortages in key economic industries. Not unlike the CRS system, BC Skills Immigration Registration System, also known as SIRS, ranks potential immigration candidates based on several human capital and economic factors.
  • BC PNP Express Entry – BC PNP Express Entry is aligned with the Federal Express Entry System. It allows certain skilled workers, professionals, graduates of Canadian post-secondary institutions, and those with post-graduate degrees obtained in British Columbia to benefit from accelerated immigration to BC.
  • Entrepreneurial Immigration – This program was designed to draw in talented, high-net-worth entrepreneurial immigrants who can successfully own and operate BC-based businesses. This immigration pathway offers a permanent residency option to business owners who are looking to open a new business in BC or to those looking to expand an existing operation into the province.

In addition to these established streams, BC PNP has also introduced and extended a 2017 Tech Pilot program that allows for fast-tracked immigration for individuals with in-demand skills in the technology sector and a Regional Pilot program entrepreneurial immigration to regional communities.

What Streams Are Receiving the Highest Number of Nominations? 

In 2019 BC welcomed over 6,550 new immigrants to the province. Of those newly admitted residents, the majority were accepted through Skilled Worker programs, closely split between the BC PNP and BC Express Entry, and accounting for over half of all BC PNP immigration. International graduates made up the next largest group, followed by post-graduate immigration, entrepreneur immigration, and healthcare professionals.

Source: BC PNP Report 2019

What Skills are Most in Demand by the BC Provincial Nominee Program? 

Within the Skilled Worker NOC listed occupations, 35% of BC PNP nominations were accounted for by the top 10 fields. These numbers are a shift from previous years, with notable increases in industries related to restaurants, retail, and technology.

Source: BC PNP Report 2019

The Tech Pilot program accounted for 23% of BC PNPs in 2019, up significantly from its launch in 2017. This program covers a diverse range of fields, including multi engineering disciplines, computer systems managers, and web developers. The full list can be read here.

Source: BC PNP Report 2019

How to Apply For a BC Provincial Nominee Program 

Each BC PNP pathway has its own system for applications. While some streams are aligned with the broader Canadian Express Entry system, others may require a separate registration under the BC SIRS. For example, candidates desiring accelerated entry, who met the minimum requirement of one of the federal Express Entry Program, must first create an online profile within the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) Express Entry system before registering online with BC PNP.

Other candidates, particularly those who may not meet all the minimum requirements under an Express Entry Program, may still be eligible under a BC PNP pathway. These candidates may submit a paper application directly through the SI stream. Processing times tend to be longer than with Express Entry.

If you need help choosing the most appropriate BC PNP pathway, Elaar Immigration can help. We will assess your current situation, match you with the right program, and help you through each step of the application process. Contact our team today to find out more about how we make immigration to BC a reality.


Do I need to Work with a Canada PR Visa Consultant

Do I need to Work with a Canada PR Visa Consultant?

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For those looking to obtain permanent residency in Canada, visa consultants provide an essential service in navigating the application process. New immigrants wanting to move to Canada are under no obligation to work with a visa consultant, lawyer, or any other immigration service – but many who choose not to often wish that they had.

What do Canada PR Visa Consultants Do?

A PR visa consultant manages each step of the visa application for you. There is a tremendous amount of paperwork required throughout the immigration process, and even the slightest error could lead to your entire application being rejected. Before a permanent resident visa consultant ever applies on your behalf, they will assess your current situation and ensure you apply for the right program – the one that offers the greatest chance of success.

Visa consultants will then work with you to collect all the required information and begin the steps for that program’s particular application process. Navigating the various immigration programs is no small task; there are federally administered programs, provincial programs, and programs that require submissions to more than one stream – confused yet?  A visa consultant is an immigration expert, and they have years of experience navigation the immigration process. They know precisely how each program is run, which programs are best for a given situation, and what to do if there is ever an issue with an application.

Do I need to Work with a Canada PR Visa ConsultantSituations Where PR Visa Consultants Can Help

Unless you truly enjoy spending hours filling out forms and collecting paperwork, working with an immigration consultant always makes the immigration application process easier, regardless of your application’s complexity. However, in some cases, working with a consultant may be the difference between your application’s success and its failure.

  1. You Have Been Refused Before

There are several reasons an application may have been refused, and most of them do not mean that you are inadmissible to Canada. If you have previously been refused permanent residency, you should have a letter from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) outlying why it was rejected. Often the problem lies with incomplete or missing documentation or errors with the application itself. Other times you may have inadvertently applied for a program for which you were not eligible, or Canada Immigration officials were not satisfied that you had met all requirements for permanent residency.

Whatever the case, PR visa consultants can help ensure simple mistakes do not occur again, avoiding unnecessary costs and lengthy delays in receiving your permanent residency status.

  1. You Have A Criminal Record

Canada has strict admissibility requirements when it comes to previous criminal convictions. It is not only serious offenses that may render you inadmissible to Canada; certain driving or drug-related infractions may result in admission refusal by IRCC.

However, a previous conviction doesn’t mean that you have to give up on permanent Canadian residency; there are ways to legally enter Canada while working to overturn or overcome criminal inadmissibility. PR visa consultants, or lawyers, are well versed in navigating criminal inadmissibility challenges and can help you surmount obstacles blocking your path.

  1. You Have a Medical Condition

Canada offers its citizens, and permanent residents access to universal free healthcare. However, due to the tax-payer funded system, Canada also limits the cost threshold for what it deems excessive demand. New immigrants with preexisting medical conditions could be declared medically inadmissible if the cost of their healthcare or social services exceeds $21,204 per year or $106,020 over 5 years.

PR visa consultants are not medical practitioners, but they can help you make a case regarding the potential costs for preexisting medical conditions that require ongoing care.

If you are looking for professional Canadian immigration assistance due to the concerns outlined here or any other reason, the experienced team at Elaar Immigration is here to help.

Special Immigration Opportunity For Ex-International Students

Special Immigration Opportunity For Ex-International Students

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Tens of thousands of international students come to Canada to pursue higher education every year. This trend is likely to continue, as Canada is home to some of the world’s highest-ranking educational institutions. This includes institutions such as the University of Toronto, McGill, and the University of British Columbia.

Special Immigration Opportunity For Ex-International Students 

The Impact of COVID-19 on Ex-International Students

A significant percentage of international students also use this opportunity to pursue permanent resident status through the Express Entry system after completing their education. This typically requires them to obtain a post-graduate work permit along with qualifying work experience. However, the recent pandemic has made it difficult for many students to find jobs or get sufficient work experience before their visa expires.

Ex-international students who are unable to obtain 12 months of continuous skilled work in a full-time position in Canada will no longer be allowed to work legally and may be required to leave the country when their post-graduate work permit expires. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) do not usually grant work-permit extensions or renewals under normal circumstances. However, they are currently offering ex-international students a chance to apply for new open work permits in light of the pandemic.

New Open Work Permits for Ex-International Students

The new policy offers ex-international students with expired or soon-to-expire post-graduate work permits a chance to apply for a unique brand new open work permit. Canada international students can benefit from this new permit, which is valid for up to 18 months. It offers them a chance to stay in Canada and look for work opportunities or continue working in their current job.

Individuals with this open work permit can work for any employer they choose. This is in contrast to employer-specific work permits that lock foreign workers to a single employer in Canada.

Eligibility for the Open Work Permit Under Public Policy

This unique open work permit is available to ex-international students who:

  • Owned a post-graduate work permit that expired on or after January 30, 2020, or is set to expire within four months from January 27, 2021, when this public policy was announced.
  • Were present in Canada as of January 27, 2021, and have stayed in the country since this date.
  • Have temporary resident status or lost their temporary resident status and are attempting to restore it.
  • Have a valid passport.
  • Ex-international students must apply before July 27, 2021, to obtain this new open work permit. It is issued only once and cannot be extended.

Elaar Immigration Consulting Can Help

Ex-international students should take advantage of this unique opportunity if they wish to remain in Canada and work. You can boost your chances of being issued this new open work permit with Elaar Immigration Consulting’s help.

We understand the many challenges ex-international students face in Canada. This is why we are offering an exclusive 50% discount for our open work permit Canada application services for a limited time. Please get in touch with Elaar Immigration Consulting to get started with the application process as soon as possible.

How Canada Business Immigration is Reinforcing Economic Growth for All Canadians

How Canada Business Immigration is Reinforcing Economic Growth for All Canadians

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There are few who will argue against the fact that the future of the global economy is being shaped by technological advances. Across a wide range of industries, from food production to fabrication, the Canadian economy as we know it continues to be influenced by game-changing new technology – and immigrants are at the forefront of many of these ground breaking innovations.

The skills required to compete globally in this rapidly changing environment are in high-demand and persistent low-supply. To combat this shortage of skilled workers, Canada has made business immigration to Canada more attractive to new immigrants, hoping to recruit top talent.

Recognizing the importance immigrants’ play in supporting local businesses and the economy, Canada has created an immigration system that streamlines the immigration process, particularly for highly sought-after skilled workers and entrepreneurial individuals looking to bring their business ideas to Canada. While other countries are tightening borders and limiting immigration, Canada is focusing on enticing talented and innovative individuals into the country – and it has paid off.

There are four main immigrant classes accepted into Canada each year: business, economic, family, and refugee. Contrary to popular belief, business and economic class immigrants represent the vast majority of immigration to Canada and account for almost 60% of new Canadians. Along with their innovation, talent, and in-demand skills, these Canadian immigrants have also spurred investment, created jobs, filled high-skilled job vacancies, and supported local communities.

According to data compiled by Statistics Canada, businesses owned by immigrants account for just over 17% of all private or incorporated companies but account for over 25% of job creation. This increased job growth has been partially attributed to the fact the immigrant-owned businesses tend to be younger and more specialized, both of which support job growth at an accelerated pace. Furthermore, immigrant-owned businesses appear to have a survival rate equal to or greater than their Canadian-born counterparts – with 58% still in operation after seven years.

But not only are immigrants creating a large number of jobs for Canadians, but they are also creating high-quality employment opportunities in fields such as professional, scientific, and technical services, retail trade, and transportation.

Business and economic class immigrants also play an essential role in supporting Canadian businesses by bringing their skills and experience to fill vacancies in highly specialized jobs, particularly in skilled trades where Canadian-born participation is lacking.

Strong immigration policies, coupled with an attractive business environment including good infrastructure, access to an educated workforce, high quality-of-life, and low corporate taxes, have given Canada the tools it needs to compete in an increasingly competitive global environment. However, to maintain this enviable position, Canada needs to continue to attract top talent and international enterprises with generous immigration policies, including the Canada business immigration program. To that effect, Canada has announced plans to increase the numbers of immigrants accepted into the country, targeting a rate of 1% of the Canadian population per year until at least 2023.

If you have been considering making Canada your home and have an entrepreneurial vision or sought-after skills, now is the time to apply. At Elaar Immigration we help prospective Canadian immigrants navigate each step of the application and business immigration process. Using our diversified skills, we make settling into a new home more comfortable. Contact Elaar Immigration to find more about the support we can provide.

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