Express Entry Visa

The Express Entry visa enables professional workers and qualified tradespeople to
live and work in Canada through one of three immigration plans.

Express Entry Visa

The Express Entry visa is one of Canada’s ways to attract professional workers and qualified tradespeople to immigrate to Canada. The Express Entry visa is one of the speedier routes to gain permanent residency into Canada.

Canada wants to help foreigners who can add to the country’s economy and growth to become a permanent resident of their country.

WHAT IS EXPRESS ENTRY?

The Express Entry visa for immigration into Canada is a selection system visa designed to choose the most skilled needed workers in Canada.

The Express Entry visa allows the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) to grant permanent residence visa’s on a demand driven basis rather than a first come, first served basis by using a points based system targeting skilled workers, qualified tradespersons and foreigners already employed in a skilled position in Canada.

In October 2018 the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) announced its updated immigration level plans for 2019-2021. Canada’s commitment is to increase the number of permanent residencies issued through the Express Entry visa system to around 260k over a 3-year period with a further 200k through the Provincial Nominee Program.

Under what immigration programs can it be used?

Applicants for the Express Entry visa to immigrate to Canada need to be eligible for one of three different programs.

  • The Federal Skilled Worker Class. This is a foreign professional or a skilled worker, they are then eligible to apply for the Express Entry visa.
  • The Canadian Experience Class. This is a foreigner who has been employed in Canada for a minimum of twelve months, they then are eligible to apply for the Express Entry visa,
  • The Federal Skilled Trades Class. Any foreign qualified experienced tradesperson has the right to apply for the Express Entry visa.

The purpose of the Express Entry visa is to help the immigration of skilled workers to Canada who are more likely to succeed economically.

The Express Entry visa is a not a ‘first come, first served’ visa but a ‘ demand driven’ visa. In essence, Canada wants to add to the country’s economy and growth and will choose applicants who can help the country do this.

In addition there is also the option of a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), which also falls under the Express Entry visa selection system, however, this program is for workers who have the skills, education and work experience to contribute to a specific territory or province within Canada. The province or territory needs to nominate the worker who then applies under the Express Entry visa selection system as normal. They do, however, then need to relocate to the nominated province or territory and reside there. There are additional points available for anyone applying for their Express Entry visa into Canada via the Provincial Nominee Program so this is a good way to increase the points required.

Who can qualify for Express Entry?

  • Any foreign professional or skilled worker.
  • Any foreign qualified experienced tradesperson.
  • Any foreigner who has worked in Canada for a minimum of twelve months.
  • Any foreigner who has been nominated by a province or territory and falls into one of the three categories above.

Anyone falling under one of these categories can apply to immigrate to Canada on an Express Entry visa. By completing a short assessment where points are earned depending on how ‘desirable’ you are to Canada’s growth and economy, you can take the next step in becoming a permanent resident of Canada.

How the Express Entry process works

The Express Entry visa works on a point based system.

If you are wishing to immigrate to Canada on an Express Entry visa you need to reach a minimum number of points in order to qualify for the next process of obtaining the Express Entry visa.

Points are given based on the following:

Work experience

  • The more experience you have the more points you will earn.

Language ability in English and/or French

  • A language test in English and/or French is necessary. There are additional points available for a proficiency in a second language.

Education

  • Points are awarded based upon the level of education you have reached. The higher the qualification, the more points are available.

Age

  • Points are awarded on the age of the applicant. If you are between the ages of 18 and 35 you will gain the maximum number of points. Alas, the older you are the less points will be awarded.

Job offer

  • Points can be awarded for already having a job offer in Canada. However, this is not a guarantee that your Express Entry visa will be approved.

Adaptability

  • The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) want you to be able to settle in Canada and therefore will award points for the Express Entry visa based upon a number of things:
    • Have you previously worked in Canada as a skilled worker for a minimum of 12 months?
    • Have you studied in Canada?
    • Do you have a job offer from an employer in Canada?
    • Do you have a relative in Canada? The relative must be at least 18 years old and be related to the applicant or their spouse/partner and must be a parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, sibling, aunt, uncle, niece or nephew. They must be a permanent resident or a Canadian citizen.

Funds

  • If you don't yet have an offer of employment then you must declare that you have the minimum required amount of money to support you and your family. Proof will be required at the time of applying for the permanent residency.

Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

  • Additional points can be earned by being nominated via the Express Entry visa system for a particular province or territory.

Once the above has been met you need to then raise an Expression of Interest (EOI) by completing the first part of the application to be considered for an Express Entry visa for Canada. Once completed and submitted the application is then added to the Express Entry pool for further consideration.

What documents you will need to apply?

Documents required to apply for the Express Entry visa are as follows:

  • Passport
  • Language test results.
  • Proof of education qualifications.
  • A written job offer from an employer in Canada where applicable.
  • A police certificate declaring if the applicant has had any criminal charges placed against them.
  • A medical report to state the applicant and accompanying family are in good health.
  • Proof of funds being transferred into Canada.

What happens if you are elected from the express entry pool?

The IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) will carry out an Express Entry visa draw of the highest ranked applicants and issue them with an Invite to Apply (ITA) for their Express Entry visa.

If you receive an Invite to Apply (ITA) then you need to complete your Express Entry application form and provide the necessary documentation required. The completion and submission has to be carried out within a certain timescale in order to still be valid.

The IRCC conducts a draw around every two weeks.

What happens if your Express Entry is approved?

If your Express Entry visa is approved we will email you your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR). This will have all of your information on it including a photograph. You then must enter Canada within the validity of the COPR. This is linked to the expiry of the your medical certificate or their passport validity. The COPR is not valid from the date it is approved and you need to be aware of this as it cannot be extended and will then become invalid. The validity date is shown on the confirmation but be aware it may be as little as six months, however, you can enter Canada and depart again once your PR card has been issued and received or failing this you can apply for a Permanent Resident Travel Document (PRTD) via a Canadian visa office out of Canada.

Upon receipt of the Express Entry visa approval you must check that the details match your passport details.

If you are already within Canada you must undergo a short interview with IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) either at one of their locations across the following states:

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Manitoba and Nunavut
  • New Brunswick
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Nova Scotia
  • Ontario
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan

Or you can visit a Canadian “port of entry” (border crossing).

Whichever option you chose to do you must present your COPR and any permanent residence visa you have been given, not all applicants will receive this, and proof that you have funds to support you and your family.

The officer will make sure all your documents are valid and ask a few questions to determine that you still meet the criteria to live in Canada.  You must give the officer your Canadian address to enable them to forward your PR card onto you.

If you are outside Canada when you receive your COPR you need to enter Canada within the validity of your COPR. Please check the COPR to verify the expiration date. On arrival in Canada you must have your passport which must be a regular private citizen passport and your COPR  and proof of funds to support you and your family. You will be met by an officer from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) who will make sure you are:

  • Entering Canada before or on the expiry date shown on your COPR.
  • Make sure that you are the same person who has been approved to travel to Canada and may use biometrics to do so.
  • Request to see your passport and other documents such as your COPR and proof that you have the funds to support you and your family.
  • Ask a few questions to ensure you still meet the criteria to be a permanent resident in Canada.
  • Will ask for your mailing address.

Upon successful completion of this the officer will allow you to enter Canada as a permanent resident.

What happens if your Express Entry is approved?

If you aren’t yet ready to relocate fully and still have things to finalise you can enter Canada within the validity time of your COPR but then leave again. CBSA will mail you your PR card and this allows you to exit and enter Canada freely, however, if you depart before your PR card has been received you will need to make an application for a PRTD (Permanent Resident Travel Document) at a Canadian visa office outside of Canada prior to being able to arrive back in to Canada.

Disclaimer: Intergate Emigration is not an agency or affiliated with the Canadian Government and we act independently in the interests of our clients. We act as an agent for Nwando Oranye, a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant who provides fee-based services in addition to the official government charges to advise, assist and represent clients through the often-complex visa application process. All decisions for granting of a visa remain with the local authorities, subject to lodging a valid application using the forms available on the government website and meeting the relevant criteria.Our licensed immigration consultant is registered with the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC). Nwando Oranye's registration number is R520558 . All her services comply with the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) and her services with the compiling of visa and permit applications and her relocation services are unavailable through government channels. The application forms used during the immigration process can also be collected free of charge at any Canadian Government. Read our privacy policy here.

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