Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What are the qualifications of your Canadian Immigration Consultants?
Become A Canadian subcontracts the services of certified Immigration Consultants who are members in good standing of the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC). Being certified by the ICCRC means that our Immigration Consultants that we work with are authorized to provide professional services to clients related to Canadian immigration. Thus, you can benefit from their expertise in helping thousands of clients around the globe to explore their options for immigration to Canada!
Q. How do I know if I qualify for a Canadian visa?
Our ICCRC-registered Immigration Consultants that we work with can evaluate your details and tell you which Canadian immigration option you are best-suited for.
Q. What are the programs for immigration to Canada?
The Canadian government has established several programs for immigration to Canada, each of which has its own eligibility requirements. Some of the most popular Canadian immigration programs include the: Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP); Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP); Provincial Nominee Program (PNP); Family Sponsorship Program; and the Caregiver Program. If you qualify for the FSWP, FSTP or PNP, and meet other criteria, you may be eligible for Express Entry to Canada!
Q. How does the Canadian immigration procedure work?
Become A Canadian makes the Canadian immigration process as easy as possible. First, you can receive an expert evaluation of your options for immigration to Canada from our ICCRC-registered Immigration Consultants that we collaborate with. Second, if our Immigration Consultants that we work with assess that you are likely to meet the eligibility requirements for a specific Canadian immigration program, they can also help you through each step of the process - to make sure all of your forms are completed and submitted correctly and to answer any questions you may have about immigration to Canada.
Q. How long will this process take me?
The amount of time required for the Canadian immigration process depends on several factors, but generally takes approximately 9-18 months. The length of time can vary, however, based on which Canadian immigration program you are applying for, how quickly you can take certain required steps, and other unique factors.
Q. What happens if I pay and then I will be found ineligible?
If our ICCRC-registered Immigration Consultants that we work with evaluate your details and determine that you do not currently meet the eligibility requirements for immigration to Canada, they will inform you about possible options you may have.
Q. What are the costs involved with the process?
In addition to paying for the professional services provided by our ICCRC-registered immigration consultants that we collaborate with, there are also governmental fees and other costs involved in the procedure. Become A Canadian helps to make the process more affordable by allowing clients to conveniently pay for professional services as they go through each stage of our Canadian immigration procedure. Besides our fees, clients may also need to pay for an evaluation of their English and/or French language skills; an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA); medical exams; police certificates; plus the Canadian Visa Application Fee and the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) which are both paid to the Government of Canada. Clients who are approved for Canadian immigration will also need to pay for their travel and other expenses when they move to Canada and have enough money to pay for their housing, food, transportation in Canada, and other living expenses. Please note that this is a general overview and that the costs involved can vary, depending on a client's unique circumstances, which Canadian immigration program they are applying for and other factors. Become A Canadian clients will receive more detailed information specific to their particular case as they go through the procedure.
Q. In what currency must I pay the Canadian government fees?
The Canadian governmental fees must be paid in Canadian Dollars (CAD).
Q. When must I pay the Canadian governmental fees?
Normally, the Canadian governmental fees must be paid when the documents are submitted to Canada's government, but this will depend on which visa you are applying for and which specific Canadian government office you are applying through. The visa application fee is usually paid before the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF). The Canadian governmental fees must be paid using a credit card, money order, certified check, or bank draft.
Q. How much is the Canadian Visa Application Fee?
The cost of the governmental fee to apply for a visa to Canada will depend on various factors, such as which Canadian immigration program is being applied for, how many family members are applying for a Canadian visa, etc. In general, the governmental visa application fee for a Permanent Resident (PR) Visa to Canada will usually be hundreds of Canadian Dollars (CAD), must be paid by the applicant when the official visa application is submitted to the Canadian government and is non-refundable, regardless of whether or not the visa is granted. As an example, the PR Visa Application Fee in September 2016 for the Federal Skilled Workers Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, Provincial Nominees Program and Quebec Skilled Workers Program was $550 CAD for the principal applicant, $550 CAD for the spouse/partner and $150 CAD for each "dependent child" included in the Canadian Visa Application. Please note that the governmental fee(s) to apply for a PR Visa to Canada may be more or less than shown in this example and subject to change at any time by Canada's government. Furthermore, after approval of the Canadian PR Visa(s), the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) must be paid to Canada's government for the principal applicant and also for the spouse/partner (as applicable), but the RPRF does not have to be paid for "dependent children" who were included in the Canadian Visa Application.
Q. How much is the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF)?
As of September 2016, the Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) was $490 CAD. The RPRF must be paid by the main applicant and also by their spouse/partner prior to being issued their Canadian permanent resident visa, however, the RPRF does not need to be paid for the dependent children of the main applicant. It should be noted that the amount of the RPRF is subject to change at any time by Canada's government.
Q. What is the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)?
The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) is a points-based Canadian immigration program that qualifies for Express Entry to Canada. Points are given for various factors, including: English and/or French language abilities; education/qualification; work experience; age; having a qualifying job offer in Canada; and adaptability. Skilled foreign workers who are applying for the FSWP must also have at least one year of full-time paid work experience during the past 10 years in a high-demand occupation categorized as Skill Type 0 (specific management occupations), Skill Level A (particular professions normally requiring a university degree), or Skill Level B (specific skilled trades or technical jobs often requiring a college education or training as an apprentice) according to Canada's National Occupational Classification (NOC). A minimum of 67 points out of 100 points possible are needed to qualify for the FSWP, plus there are health and character requirements and other criteria that must be met.
Q. What is the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)?
The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) is a Canadian immigration program that qualifies for Express Entry to Canada. The FSTP is designed for eligible skilled foreign tradespeople whose occupations are in high-demand in Canada. Specific high-demand trades that qualify for the FSTP are normally listed under the Skill Level B category of Canada's National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. Examples of some of these types of trades include: aircraft mechanics and aircraft inspectors; carpenters; crane operators; electricians; plumbers; power engineers and power system operators; sheet metal workers; telecommunications installation and repair workers; and welders - among many other skilled trades that are in high-demand across Canada. A minimum of two years of full-time paid work experience within the past five years in one of the trades eligible for the FSTP is required. Applicants must also have the necessary education/training, English or French language abilities, and meet other eligibility requirements for the FSTP, including the health and character criteria.
Q. What is the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)?
Most of Canada’s provinces and territories have established their own Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), in collaboration with the Canadian national government, for qualified skilled foreign workers who want to immigrate to Canada and settle in their specific province or territory. Although each Canadian province or territory that participates in the PNP has its own eligibility requirements and may have different occupations that are in high-demand, they all share the same basic two-step application procedure. First, skilled foreign workers apply to the Provincial Nominee Program for a specific Canadian province or territory. Second, if the Canadian province or territory approves the skilled foreign worker for their particular Provincial Nominee Program, the foreign tradesperson may then be able to apply to Canada's national government for the Canadian permanent resident visa. During this second stage of the Canadian immigration procedure, the skilled foreign worker and any family members listed on their visa application will need to meet the health and character requirements and satisfy other eligibility criteria. It should be noted that skilled foreign workers who want to immigrate to Canada and settle in the province of Quebec must apply to the Quebec Selected Skilled Worker Program (QSWP).
Q. What is the Express Entry Canadian Immigration System?
The "Express Entry" Canadian immigration system was launched on January 1, 2015, as a faster and more efficient way for skilled foreign workers to apply for immigration to Canada. In order to qualify for Express Entry to Canada, a skilled foreign worker must meet the eligibility requirements for one of the Canadian immigration programs designed for economic immigrants: Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Program, or Provincial Nominees Program (PNP). Each of these Canadian immigration programs which qualifies for Express Entry to Canada has its own eligibility criteria. Before a skilled foreign worker files their online Express Entry profile, they must have their English and/or French language abilities evaluated by taking an authorized exam (such as the IELTS for English or the TEF for French) and receiving a score that qualifies for the particular Canadian immigration program they are applying for. In many cases, they will also need to have their education/training evaluated through an authorized Educational Credential Assessment (ECA), so that the Canadian government will know to what extent a skilled foreign worker's education/training obtained outside of Canada compares to an education received inside Canada. When the skilled foreign worker submits their details to the Canadian government by filing their online Express Entry profile, they must also register with Canada's Job Bank (within 30 days) if they do not already have a qualifying offer of Canadian employment. A Canadian governmental official will review the details in the Express Entry profile and if they believe that the skilled foreign worker meets the criteria for Express Entry, their file will be moved into the "pool" of candidates for up to 12 months. Once an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for a permanent resident visa to Canada is issued, the skilled foreign worker will have 90 days to submit their Canadian visa application, supporting documents and pay their governmental fees. In most cases, a decision will be made within six months after a complete Canadian visa application has been filed through the Express Entry system.
Q. How do I apply for Express Entry to Canada?
If you qualify, our ICCRC-registered Immigration Consultants that we collaborate with can help you through each step of the Express Entry procedure, which we have simplified for you by dividing it into four stages: Preparation, Submission, Selection and Decision. First, our Immigration Consultants that we work with will need to evaluate your eligibility for immigration to Canada. If they confirm that you are likely to qualify for Express Entry to Canada, the second stage will involve the proper submission of your Express Entry profile to the Canadian government. Third, in the event that you receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for a permanent resident visa to Canada during the selection stage, our Immigration Consultants that we collaborate with can accurately prepare and correctly submit your Canadian visa application and the required documents to Canada's government (you will also need to pay the governmental fees at this point). The fourth stage is the Canadian visa decision, which Canada's government says should be made within about six months of submission of the complete visa application. If all goes well, you and your family will be approved for Canadian permanent residency and Express Entry to Canada!
Q. What is the Invitation to Apply (ITA)?
After a skilled foreign worker applies for Canadian immigration by filing an Express Entry profile, their details are reviewed by an agent of Canada's government and if the applicant appears to qualify for Express Entry to Canada, their file is placed in the "pool" of candidates for up to 12 months. In order to be selected from the Express Entry pool of potential Canadian immigration candidates, an applicant must receive an official "Invitation to Apply" (ITA) for Canadian permanent residency from Canada's government. In other words, immigration to Canada through the Express Entry system is "by invitation only." There are three ways that a skilled foreign worker can be selected from the Express Entry pool to receive an ITA. One way for a skilled foreign worker in the Express Entry pool to receive an ITA is to obtain a qualifying offer of Canadian employment (this will normally require a positive Labor Market Impact Assessment and meeting other criteria). A second way to be issued an ITA is for a skilled foreign worker in the Express Entry pool to be nominated by a Canadian province or territory for immigration to Canada through its Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). The third way to receive an ITA is to have one of the highest scores on the Express Entry Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) when the ITAs are periodically issued. Once the ITA has been issued, the skilled foreign worker will then have 90 days to submit their complete Canadian visa application, necessary documents and required fees to Canada's government. In most cases, a decision is made regarding immigration to Canada within six months after the complete Canadian visa application is submitted.
Q. Can my family immigrate to Canada with me?
Yes - As long as your family members are included on your application for a Permanent Resident (PR) Visa to Canada, and you and your family members also meet the eligibility requirements for Canadian immigration and are issued your PR Visas to Canada! Eligible family members that you can include on your application for a PR Visa to Canada may include your spouse/partner (of the opposite sex or same sex) as well as your "dependent children" who are under the age of 19 and unmarried. You will, of course, need to provide satisfactory documentation to prove the family relationship(s). In many cases, "Proof of Funds" may also be required to confirm for the Canadian government that you can take care of your family members who immigrate to Canada with you. Furthermore, one of the many benefits enjoyed by Canadian permanent residents and citizens of Canada who are at least 18-years-old and meet other criteria is being able to sponsor certain eligible close family members (such as parents or grandparents) for Canadian immigration. Although it is usually faster and easier for your eligible spouse/partner or dependent children to immigrate to Canada with you as part of your application for Canadian permanent residency, it may also be possible for you as a Canadian permanent resident to later sponsor an eligible spouse/partner or dependent children for immigration to Canada, however, this may take longer and be more complicated. As with all Canadian immigration programs, everyone who will be issued a PR Visa to Canada must meet the health and character requirements, plus there may be additional eligibility criteria.
Q. What are the benefits of Canadian permanent residency?
If you and your eligible family members are issued a Permanent Resident (PR) Visa to Canada, you will be authorized to live and work in Canada long-term, receive free basic healthcare (after an initial waiting period), and have access to various Canadian educational programs. Canadian permanent residents and citizens enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world, plus they live in one of the most beautiful countries on Earth. After living in Canada at least four years during a six-year period as a Canadian permanent resident, and meeting other eligibility requirements, there is also an option to apply for Canadian citizenship. These are just some of the many benefits you and your family could receive if you are issued a PR Visa to Canada!
Q. Are Canadian permanent residents allowed to leave Canada?
Yes - of course! As a permanent resident of Canada, you can travel outside of Canada for extended periods of time, according to certain rules. If you are issued a Permanent Resident (PR) Visa to Canada, you will need to live in Canada for at least two years during a five-year period in order to maintain/keep your Canadian permanent resident status, but the two years do not have to be continuous. For example, you can travel on business for several weeks or months or take a vacation with your family to visit relatives or friends for several weeks or several months and so forth, as long as you do so according to the rules of your Canadian visa and have been physically present in Canada for the equivalent of at least two years during a five-year period.
Q. When can I apply for Canadian citizenship?
After living in Canada at least four years during a six-year period as Canadian permanent residents and meeting other eligibility criteria, you and your family may have the option to apply to become citizens of Canada. As a citizen of Canada, you may then apply for a Canadian passport.