Canada Visa and Emigration FAQ

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General Questions

Can I just apply for a Work Permit?

In general, no. A Work Permit will usually only be issued if a job offer has a Labour Market Impact assessment (LMIA). This means that the employer cannot find the relevant skills in the local Canadian Marketplace. A working Holiday Visa can be applied for if you are aged 18-30. A work permit can be exempt from a LMIA for various reasons such as Intra Company Transfers or Provincial nominations. Spousal Open Work Permits can be applied for if a Spouse/ Partner has successfully obtained a Study permit.

What is Express Entry?

Express Entry is not a visa, it is a selection system for candidates who are eligible for either the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Canadian Experience Class or the Federal Trades Program. It is a point based system where candidates in the ‘Pool’ are selected and invited to apply for Permanent Residency, dependent on their points. What factors make up the CRS points for Express Entry. The major factors are:

  1. Assessed English or French Language ability
  2. Assessed Academic qualifications
  3. Age
  4. Skilled Work Experience. Points can also be gained through a Spouse/ partner’s language ability and qualifications. Other points can be gained through Canadian Work or Study experience/ qualifications, siblings in Canada, a LMIA job offer or Provincial Nomination.

Do I need a job offer?

Not if you achieve enough points to be selected within Express Entry. A job offer will only add points to your score if it has a LMIA. Do I need to take a Language test? Yes, to be eligible for almost all economic and skilled worker programs, you need to score at least 6 in all sections of an IELTS general test. Ideally you will need 7s and an 8 in Listening to maximise your points. Do vocational qualifications such as NVQs count as education for Immigration to Canada? Generally, most equivalency assessment organisations in Canada will not assess vocational qualifications. How long will it take to get an ‘Invitation to Apply’? This will depend on your CRS points within Express Entry. The answer may be immediately or never, dependent on your points. A score of 420+ should anticipate an ITA within 3-6 months.

    I have a criminal Record.

    Will this stop me from gaining Immigration to Canada? If you (or a family member) has been convicted of an offence, you can only apply for rehabilitation for Immigration purposes, 5 years after the end of the sentence. You may be deemed rehabilitated after 10 years if it is just one offence.

      I’m Self–employed, will this count as work experience?

      Yes. However, evidence of this work experience is harder to prove and may constitute a far more complex application. Self Employed work experience in Canada does not count towards the Canadian Experience class.

        I don’t have enough points within Express Entry. Do I have other options?

        Yes. Often the solution will be to gain extra points through better language test results, higher qualifications or more Work Experience. The other option is to Study and Work in Canada to increase points. A Provincial Nomination will also allow your points to increase and to secure an invitation.

          Do I need a Consultant?

          No. You can apply by yourself. However, a successful application in most cases will be complex. A consultant will ensure that your application will be submitted correctly and maximise your chances of success. The application will not be faster but the chances of being rejected will reduce substantially.

            Why should I use an ICCRC regulated consultant?

            To legally represent you before the Canadian Immigration authorities, a paid representative must be a Canadian Lawyer or an ICCRC regulated consultant. If they are not, they will be, in effect, forging your identity for your application. Unregulated consultants will not be qualified and you stand a high probability of losing your fees through false promises.


            We will give you a completely honest and unbiased opinion of your likelihood of success at the outset, free of charge, and a full explanation of our fee structure.

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