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The Easiest Way to Immigrate to Canada

Canada remains a top destination for immigrants due to friendly immigration policies, high quality of life, and availability of jobs. Although immigrating to Canada involves a long process, some immigration programs are easier than others. 

Contact Immigration Advice Service today for assistance with your Canadian Permanent Residency application. Our Canadian immigration experts will help you determine the best program for you and guide you through the application process. Reach us via the online contact form or call us at  +1 844 290 6312 or +44 (0)333 414 9244 for immediate assistance.

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Overview of the Easiest Ways to Immigrate to Canada in 2024

Canada has several economic immigration programs at the Federal and Provincial levels designed to attract skilled workers and tradespeople from across the globe.

Aside from the economic programs, there are also pathways for foreigners to immigrate to Canada for studies or to reunite with family members.

The easiest ways to immigrate to Canada now are:

  • Family Sponsorship.
  • Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP).
  • Express Entry Programs.
  • Business Immigration Programs.
  • LMIA Work Route (Immigrate with a job offer).

Each pathway presents a relatively easy way to obtain permanent residency with varying requirements. However, the family sponsorship has less stringent personal requirements, provided that you have a qualifying family member sponsoring your migration to Canada.

The Express Entry program is quite straightforward but highly competitive due to the point-based Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). So, it can be challenging to meet the qualifications. The Provincial Nominee Program offers a more accessible alternative.

Requirements for Immigrating to Canada

Each Canadian immigration program has unique eligibility criteria. Ensure you meet the eligibility requirements for the specific program of interest before applying. The general requirements may include:

  • Applicants must be 18 or older for economic immigration programs. Those between the ages of 25 and 35 receive the highest points.
  • Proficiency in English or French, depending on your preferred settlement region.
  • Minimum of senior secondary education.
  • Minimum of one year of relevant work experience (for economic programs). Specific programs may require more.
  • Meet the minimum points requirement on the CRS.
  • Settlement funds of at least 13,757 CAD for a single applicant in the Express Entry Program.
  • Clean criminal record.
  • Connections to Canada.

Family sponsorship and humanitarian immigration pathways do not operate a point-based ranking system.

Family Sponsorship

Canada supports family reunification, allowing permanent residents and citizens 18 years and above to sponsor their dependent family members to Canada. It makes family sponsorship one of the easiest ways to migrate to Canada. Family members eligible for sponsorship include:

  • Spouse or common-law partner.
  • Unmarried conjugal partner.
  • Dependent children under 22 years who are neither married nor in a common-law partnership.
  • Children above 22 years who are financially dependent due to a physical or mental disability.
  • Parents and grandparents.
  • Orphaned siblings and close relatives.

If you have a family member who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, the family sponsorship pathway may be the fastest route for you to immigrate to Canada. However, you must provide sufficient proof of relationship with the sponsoring family member.

Moving to Canada through family sponsorship costs about CAD 1,365. There may be additional fees if the family member resides in Quebec. Processing of a family sponsorship visa can take up to one year.

Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)

Canada’s thirteen provinces and territories have varying populations and labour force needs. Therefore, each province is allowed to nominate foreign skilled workers for permanent residency to meet the labour demands within the region. 

The Provincial Nominee Program route is one of the most popular pathways for immigrating to Canada. Plus, it is an easier migration route for those who score low on the CRS.

Each province offers several PNPs with specific eligibility models and requirements based on its labour market and Occupation in Demand (OID) needs. Obtaining PR through this route means you must reside and work in the province that nominated you. The provinces and territories currently offering Provincial Nominee Programs include:

  • Yukon
  • Saskatchewan
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Nova Scotia
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Northwest Territories
  • Manitoba
  • British Columbia
  • New Brunswick
  • Alberta.

You can apply directly to a province for a nomination or via the Express Entry procedure for provincial programs managed by Express Entry. A PNP nomination adds 600 points to your CRS score, increasing your eligibility for Canadian permanent residency.

You’ll use the nomination to apply directly for a Canadian PR. If you’re applying via Express Entry, you’ll receive an invitation to apply (ITA) for a PR during the subsequent EE draw once you update your profile with your nomination. Each PNP’s processing time is different, and applications usually cost the same as Express Entry. Depending on the PNP you choose, there may be additional nomination processing fees.

Express Entry (EE) System

The Express Entry system is Canada’s most popular immigration pathway for skilled workers. Over 100,000 foreign workers obtain permanent residency in Canada yearly via the Express Entry system. It is a point-based system that assigns scores to applicants based on critical selection criteria, such as age, education, work experience, and language skills.

There are three streams of immigration programs under the EE system:

  • Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) Program – for skilled workers who meet specific education, job experience, and language requirements.
  • Federal Skilled Trades (FST) Program – for skilled tradespersons with Canadian job offers or valid certificate qualifications.
  • Canadian Experience Class – for people with at least three years of Canadian work experience.

If you meet the eligibility criteria for any of these streams, you can create an online EE profile and upload your qualifications. The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) tool will assess your profile and assign you a score. The highest-scoring candidates in the EE pool will be selected via a draw every two weeks. IRCC fixes the qualifying score for each draw. 

The selected candidates will each receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA), with which they’ll submit their PR application. You can obtain your Canadian PR via the Express Entry route within six months. Even if you don’t qualify for the draws, being in the pool makes you eligible for a PNP nomination.

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Business Immigration

If you’re a business owner or have experience running one, this might be the most accessible immigration pathway for you.

Canada offers several business immigration programs for investors, entrepreneurs, and self-employed persons at the federal and provincial levels. These programs offer permanent residency to foreign investors and entrepreneurs who want to start a business in Canada, contributing to its economic development. 

To qualify for a Start-up visa, you must prove that your idea is innovative, globally competitive, and will provide jobs for Canadians. An approved designated organization must support your business, and you must have the required funds to start the business. 

The required investment amount varies for different programs. Regional entrepreneur programs generally require less investment funds than federal programs.

The self-employed program is also an excellent option if you’re self-employed and have relevant experience in athletics or cultural activities. However, you must prove that your skills and experience will contribute significantly to Canada’s athletic and cultural life.

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LMIA Work Route (Immigrate with a job offer)

Receiving a Canadian job offer is another easy way to migrate to Canada. You can apply for a Work visa if you obtain a Canadian job offer. However, your Canadian employer must obtain a positive LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment)  from the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) for your job offer to be valid. 

An LMIA assesses the impact of hiring an overseas worker to fill a position in Canada. A positive LMIA result confirms that your employment was necessary and validates your job offer.

A valid Canadian job offer also increases your Express Entry CRS points. Job offers from embassies, consulates, or high commissions in Canada are not valid for immigration purposes.

Working in Canada

Foreign nationals and non-permanent residents need a work permit to work in Canada. There are three categories of work permits:

  • Closed or Employer-specific work permit: It is issued to foreign workers whose immigration to Canada was facilitated by an LMIA job offer. Holders of this permit can only work for the specific employer on the work permit application and may be required to leave Canada upon expiration of their permits. Processing a closed work permit costs CAD 100.
  • Bridging open work permit: A temporary permit that allows you to work while waiting for the result of your permanent residence application.
  • Open work permit: It allows you to work for any eligible employer in Canada. It is issued to foreign graduates of Canadian Designated Learning Institutes (DLI) and sponsored spouses of work or study permit holders. Processing an open work permit costs CAD 255.

Canadian work permits are typically processed within two to eight weeks. Your work permit will state all applicable conditions for issuance, including the type of work you can do, where you can work, and how long you can work in Canada.

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Requirements for Canadian Work Permit

Aside from meeting the requirements for an LMIA job offer and receiving an employment contract, you must meet the following criteria to qualify for a work permit. You must:

  • Prove that you’ll leave Canada at the expiration of your permit.
  • Prove that you have sufficient funds to support yourself and dependent family members in Canada.
  • Have a clean criminal background record.
  • Be medically fit. You may be required to undergo a medical examination.
  • Prove that you’re coming to work for an eligible employer.
  • Provide relevant supporting documents that prove your eligibility to enter Canada.

Documents Required for a Work Permit in Canada

The specific documents you’ll need for a work permit application depend on the type of permit you’re applying for. This includes:

  • Valid passport.
  • Recent passport-size photographs.
  • Completed application forms.
  • Curriculum vitae.
  • Employment contract (if applicable).
  • Labour Market Impact Assessment (if applicable).
  • Proof of status in Canada (if applicable).
  • Copy of educational qualifications.
  • Proof of sufficient financial resources.
  • Medical fitness certificate.
  • Proof of payment of all applicable processing fees.
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable).

If you have any questions about a Canadian immigration, our team is happy to assist.

Bringing Family to Canada

Most Canadian immigration programs allow successful applicants to immigrate with their family members. However, the family members eligible for inclusion depend on the immigration pathway.

Express Entry and PNPs only allow you to include your spouse and dependent children in your application. However, you can sponsor your parents/grandparents or other dependent family members through the family sponsorship programs.

There are additional processing fees and higher settlement funds requirements when immigrating with family members.

How Can IAS Help You?

Canada has over 80 immigration pathways for foreign skilled workers, entrepreneurs, investors, and families. It is one of the most immigrant-friendly countries in the world. Notwithstanding, immigration to Canada is not as easy as it looks. 

Each immigration pathway has its specific eligibility model and requirements. Deciding the best one for you and proving your eligibility involves a complex process. Plus, a minor mistake can invalidate your application. It is advisable to seek professional guidance in navigating your Canadian immigration process.

IAS Canadian immigration lawyers are always ready to help. Our legal team is conversant with the nuances of Canadian immigration laws and have years of experience helping foreign clients immigrate to Canada. We’ll help determine the best pathway for you, gather supporting evidence, and guide you through the application process from start to finish.

Contact us today to speak with one of our lawyers for immediate assistance. You can reach us via the online contact form or call us at +44 (0)333 414 9244.

We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can. Several Canadian immigration routes, for example, family sponsorship programs, do not require a job offer. While a job offer will increase your CRS score, it is an optional requirement for Express Entry programs and most PNPs.

You’ll need at least CAD 2,500 to process your Canadian PR application and settlement funds of at least CAD 13,757.

You can move to Canada through the following immigration programs.

  • Family Sponsorship.
  • Provincial Nominee Programs.
  • Express Entry Program.
  • Business Immigration.

The Express Entry System is the fastest way foreign nationals can obtain Canadian permanent residency. Express entry applications are typically processed within six months.

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