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Canadian Immigration Services

Permanent Status in Canada
Independent/Skilled Worker Class
Family Class
Business Class
Temporary Status in Canada
Work Permit
Study Visa
Visitor Visa

Permanent Status in Canada

The Canadian government grants permanent resident visas to members of the Economic Class and the Family Class. The Economic Class primarily comprises of professionals and skilled workers under the skilled worker class, as well as business immigrants. Under the Family Class, Canadian citizens or Permanent relatives, aged 18 years and over may be eligible to sponsor certain close family members.

Independent/Skilled Worker Class

A skilled worker, in Canadian Immigration terms, is defined as someone who has active work experience for at least 1 year full-time within the past 10 years, in either a Management position or a professional, technical, skilled or paraprofessional occupation. This category does not include intermediate level clerical workers, elemental sales or service functions or primary labour occupations which do not qualify to immigrate to Canada under this class.

Applicants are assessed according to various selection criteria. The following table gives a basic outline of points allocation for Canadian Immigration:

1. Education: 25 Points
2. Official Languages: 24 Points
3. Experience: 21 Points
4. Arranged Employment: 10 Points
5. Age: 10 Points
6. Adaptability: 10 Points
TOTAL POINTS: 100 Points

Family Class

Family Class Immigration involves sponsorship by a relative aged 18 or over and who is either a permanent resident in Canada or a Canadian citizen who is residing in or returning to Canada.

The qualifying Canadian citizen or resident can only sponsor the following relatives as applicants for immigration to Canada:
  • spouse
  • common-law/same-sex partner
  • dependent children under age 22
  • dependent children age 22 and over (if they are full-time students, mentally or physically disabled and dependent upon their parents)
  • children adopted or to be adopted by them, or under their guardianship
  • parents
  • grandparents
  • other prescribed family members where it is warranted under humanitarian and compassionate grounds, based on the last surviving member of the family
Canadian Law has recently changed to allow Immigration sponsorship of common-law and same-sex partners, as well as partners who have been cohabiting in a conjugal relationship for at least 1 year.

Business Class

Canada's Business Immigration Program seeks to promote economic development and employment by attracting people with venture capital, business acumen and entrepreneurial skills to Canada. There are 3 categories of Business Immigration: Investors; Entrepreneurs; and Self-Employed.

i. Investors

The Immigrant Investor Program (also known as the Investor Category of the Business Class) seeks to attract experienced businesspersons and capital to Canada. This category is ideal if you want to immigrate to Canada but do not wish to be obligated to engage in any type of business/employment activity upon your arrival.

To be eligible to apply for Permanent Residence in Canada in the Investor Category, you must demonstrate business experience and a minimum net worth of $800,000 CAD. The investment in the Immigrant Investor Program may be financed and, generally speaking, with a minimum deposit of $135,000 CAD you can secure the maximum loan from certain financial institutions in order to complete the required investment of. The assets of your spouse/ partner are included when assessing your net worth.

As a business investor, however, you must demonstrate that you have a certain level of business experience, which must have been attained during at least 2 of the past 5 years. There are two ways to do this: (i) ownership, management and control of a qualifying business of sufficient size; or (ii) management of a business, or a portion of a business, without the need to own it, with at least 5 full-time employees.

ii. Entrepreneurs

The Entrepreneur Program seeks to attract experienced businesspersons that will own and actively manage businesses in Canada that will contribute to the economy and create jobs.

To apply as an Entrepreneur, you must demonstrate business experience and a minimum net worth of 300,000 CAD. Unlike Investors, the only way in which an Entrepreneur can demonstrate business experience is through management and control of a qualifying business of sufficient size. You will be required to provide documentation proving that, within any 2 of the last 5 years, you controlled and managed a Qualifying Business that meets any 2 of the defined requirements regarding equity, full-time employees, sales and net income.

iii. Self-Employed

Self-employed persons must have the intention and ability to create their own employment and make a significant contribution to the cultural, artistic or athletic life of Canada, or, to create their own employment by purchasing and managing a farm in Canada.

Only if you have been self-employed in cultural activities or in athletics, or have participated at a world class level in cultural activities or in athletics or have farm management experience, you are eligible to apply within this class.

Temporary Status in Canada

The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Immigration Regulations not only cover persons who wish to live in Canada permanently but also those who wish to study and/or work temporarily in Canada and persons who wish to visit.

Work Permit

A foreign national may not work in Canada unless authorized to do so. In many instances, a work permit is required and will only be issued by an Immigration officer after Human Resources Development Canada ("HRDC") approves the job offer of a prospective Canadian employer to a foreign national. There are exceptions to this requirement, as well, the circumstances of which vary on a case by case basis. HRDC is not required to provide an opinion on each individual offer of employment. Rather, HRDC may provide this opinion with respect to a single job offer, a group of job offers made by a single employer or a single or group of job descriptions that reflect needs across a range of Canadian employers.

The work permit will state that you can work at a specific job for a specific period of time for a specific employer. A work permit will NOT be issued for you to come to Canada to look for work. It is valid only for the specific job, the specific amount of time and the employer stated on the form.

Study Visa

As a foreign national you may not study in Canada unless you are in possession of a study permit. It should be noted, however, that if the course or study program lasts for 6 months or less, a study permit is not required.

Visitor Visa

The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act requires all visitors, except those exempt by regulation, to obtain a visitor visa before coming to Canada.

You must therefore demonstrate to visa officials that you have significant family, social, economic and cultural ties to your country of origin and sufficient means to support yourself during your visit to Canada, as well as satisfying visa officials that there is no risk that you will overextend your visit to Canada.

All Canadian works are undertaken by Harris Chawla Solicitors

The above outline is only a brief overview of the Migration & Visa Program. Contact a Migration Matters consultant immediately for a Pre-Migration Application Assessment.

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