Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Open Work Permits for Spouses of Canadian citizens or permanent residents

Effective December 22, 2014 and as part of a 1 year trial, Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CIC) will be issuing Open Work Permits to certain spouses or common-law partners who are applying for permanent residence from inside Canada.  Previously, sponsored spouses would have to wait until first stage approval to be issued open work permits. Since first stage approval is taking nearly 16 months, it creates major hardships in that these people cannot work while living in Canada waiting for their applications to be finalized.

work permit

Applicants who have already submitted their application for permanent residence under the Spouse/Common-Law class but have not yet applied for an open work permit should do so immediately.

If an applicant has already received an approval in principal, they have the option of applying for a work permit online.

Applicants who have yet to submit their applications for permanent residence should also complete an application for a work permit and submit along with their application for permanent residence.


Source: http://www.theimmigrationteam.com/2014/12/23/open-work-permits-spouses-canadian-citizens-permanent-residents/

Ensuring Long-Term Prosperity and Economic Growth

Country of birth of "immigrants and non-p...
Country of birth of "immigrants and non-permanent residents" in Canada in 2001 Census (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of immigration in fueling economic growth and is planning to welcome between 260,000 and 285,000 new permanent residents in 2015, an increase of approximately 19,000 planned admissions over last year.
The economic category will account for the largest segment of the 2015 levels plan, at almost 65 per cent of overall admissions. The remaining 35 per cent will consist of family class immigrants, refugees and others admitted under humanitarian programs.
Higher levels in 2015 are an indication of the Government of Canada’s strategy of supporting economic growth by addressing current and future labour needs by increasing admissions in key economic programs. Canada’s future economic growth will require a steady stream of new immigrants to meet labour market demands.  
The increase in levels will also assist Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s implementation of the new application management system, Express Entry, in January 2015 and positions our immigration system to focus more on economic immigration in the future. This first year of Express Entry will be a transition year for economic immigration: while new applications under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program, Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and a portion of the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) will be managed in Express Entry, most admissions in 2015 will be of applicants who applied under the previous system. Increasing admission levels creates the conditions for the success of the new system in 2015 by providing enough space to accommodate pre-Express Entry cases while providing flexibility to admit higher volumes under Express Entry as soon as possible.
Highlights:
  • The FSWP admissions will rise slightly in 2015 to up to 51,000. This program will continue to accept the most permanent resident admissions for 2015.
  • The CEC has grown rapidly since launching in late 2008, with more admissions expected this year than ever before. To accommodate the rapid growth of this popular program, Citizenship and Immigration Canada will accept up to 23,000 permanent residents through the CEC in 2015. 
  • Canada plans to welcome up to 48,000 permanent residents under the PNP in 2015. This represents the highest-ever provincial nominee admissions in history.
  • An increase in admissions to the caregiver programs will take place in 2015. The increase of up to 30,000 caregivers will help to accelerate reduction of the existing Live-in Caregiver Program backlog.
Infographic described below

Text version

Graph showing rapid growth of the CEC program from 2009 to 2013, broken down by principal applicants and spouses/dependants.
YearCEC principal applicantsCEC spouses and dependants
20091,775770
20102,5331,384
20113,9732,054
20125,9433,416
201315,30411,460
The Canadian Experience Class (CEC) is targeting the type of economic immigrant Canada wants: people who have demonstrated success in the Canadian labour market and who have the skills to contribute to our country over the long run. The CEC has grown rapidly since launching in late 2008, with more admissions expected this year than ever before. To accommodate the rapid growth of this popular program, Citizenship and Immigration Canada will accept up to 23,000 permanent residents through the CEC in 2015.
Infographic described below

Text version

Two maps, one from the year 2000 and the other from 2013, showing the growth and dispersion of economic immigrants thanks to the Provincial Nominee Program. The 2013 map shows greater dispersion of PNP immigrants throughout the country, particularly in the Prairies and Maritime provinces.

Provincial Nominee Program

The Provincial Nominee Program is Canada’s second-largest economic immigration program and has helped to diversify and spread the benefits of immigration across the country. Canada plans to welcome between 46,000 and 48,000 permanent residents under the PNP in 2015. This represents the highest-ever provincial nominee admissions in history.

Source: CIC

Reducing Backlogs and Improving Processing Times

Immigrants selon le pays de naissance, Québec,...
Immigrants selon le pays de naissance, Québec, 2001-2005 / Immigrants by country of origin, Québec, 2001-2005 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
As a result of actions taken by the Government of Canada since 2009, the backlog of permanent resident applications has been reduced by nearly 45 percent, paving the way for a faster and more flexible immigration system. The 2015 levels plan is building on the success of the Government of Canada’s efforts to reduce backlogs and improve client service by increasing application numbers in key categories such as the Canadian Experience Class, the Humanitarian and Compassionate categories, as well as categories targeted to caregivers.
Highlights as of December 31, 2013:
  • The backlog of applications across all immigration streams has been cut by nearly 45 percent from the end of 2009 to the end of 2013.
  • The Economic Class inventory has been reduced by almost 57 percent, including the Federal Skilled Workers inventory having been reduced by almost 92 percent.
  • The Parents and Grandparents inventory will have been reduced by over 70 percent by the end of 2015.
  • The Humanitarian and Compassionate inventory has been reduced by 43 percent.
Over the years, efforts have been made to reduce the number of new applications received. In 2012 and 2013, the Government of Canada temporarily stopped accepting new applications in the Parent and Grandparent category and greatly increased admissions. Legislation to terminate the Federal Skilled Worker category backlog in 2012 removed more than 100,000 old applications. Economic Action Plan 2014 announced the Government of Canada’s intention to cancel the federal Immigrant Investor and Entrepreneur programs, and the 2014 Budget Implementation Act terminated the vast majority of the investor and entrepreneur backlogs.
The Government of Canada’s continued focus on reducing the application backlog helps to better manage the intake of applications to support a smooth transition to the new application management system, Express Entry, on January 1, 2015.
Source: CIC

Monday, December 22, 2014

Express Entry: what can I do to prepare for the launch on Jan. 1?

The Centre Block on Parliament Hill, containin...
The Centre Block on Parliament Hill, containing the houses of the Canadian parliament (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Creating an Express Entry profile will be the first step to immigrate to Canada permanently as a skilled worker through the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), or Canadian Experience Class (CEC).


There are a few things you can do to be ready to complete your Express Entry profile and to give yourself the best-possible chance to be invited to apply for permanent residence:


1) You will need to take a language test. CIC will use your test results to see whether you are eligible to immigrate to Canada under one of the federal programs that are part of Express Entry.


2) If you were educated outside Canada, you may need to have your educational credentials (your foreign degree, diploma or certificate) assessed against Canadian standards.
You may not need an assessment if:
  • you have at least one year of recent work experience in Canada, or
  • your work experience is in a skilled trade (skilled manual work).
Note: Even if you don't think you need to have your foreign education assessed to be eligible under Express Entry, you may want to do so to increase your chances of being invited to apply as including all of your eligible education in your profile can get you more points under the Comprehensive Ranking System.


3) You need to know the skill type of the job your work experience is in (as well as the job you plan to have in Canada, if they are different). You will use Canada's job classification system (the National Occupational Classification, or NOC) to find out whether your work experience is valid under one of the three federal programs.


****IMPORTANT****
CIC will issue candidates an Invitation to Apply by regularly drawing only the top ranked candidates from the pool. The first draw will take place at the end of January 2015.
A candidate's rank is determined using the Comprehensive Ranking System, and not based on when their profile was submitted. In other words, the Express Entry system ensures that only the candidates who are most likely to succeed - and not simply the first to submit their application - are able to apply to immigrate to Canada.
********
Learn more about the application process on the Express Entry website.
We look forward to providing you with more updates on how Express Entry will work for you.

Source: Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Please visit our website and take our online assessment at www.nexuscanadaimmigration.com

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Study permits and New credential introduced for international student advisors.

English: International Students
English: International Students (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
CIC is also making greater use of its Multiple Entry Visa (MEV) option this year for those applying for visitor visas for Canada – that is, for visits of up to six months at a time. MEVs are valid for a 10-year period and, as of February 2014, they are now the default visa type issued to successful visitor visa applicants.

Next stage of reform implementation

In June this year, Canada began to implement a series of wide-ranging reforms for its International Student Program (ISP). Major policy changes introduced at the time included:
  • Only students enrolled at designated institutions in Canada are now able to apply for a study permit (that is, an international student visa).
  • International students with a Canadian study permit (and “pursuing academic, vocational or professional training of six months or more that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate at a designated institution”) are now automatically authorised to work off-campus for up to 20 hours per week during the academic session and full-time during scheduled breaks, all without the need to apply for a separate work permit.
CIC reports that, as of November 2014, 881 institutions have been designated by their respective provinces and territories as eligible to receive international studentsA complete list of designated learning institutions is available on the CIC website, and is updated regularly.
The next major stage of reform implementation will be the introduction of a new “compliance reporting portal” website for designated institutions. The portal will launch in spring 2015, following a pilot currently underway with an initial group of 40 institutions. All designated institutions will be required to use the portal to file reports at six-month intervals on the academic and enrolment status of their international students.

Introducing the Regulated International Student Immigration Advisor

The introduction of Canada’s Bill C-35 legislation famously excluded both international education agents, as well as international student advisors employed by Canadian institutions, from advising students on immigration matters – unless, that is, they completed training and certification as a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) with the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC).
In other words, the new legislation prevented international student advisors (ISAs) based at Canadian institutions from providing the immigration advice that they had always done in the course of their day-to-day work with students. Canadian institutions objected vigorously on this point to CIC, and also to the expense associated with qualifying ISA staff as RCICs under the requirements of the new legislation.
The end result of these discussions, as described in ICCRC by-law amendments, was as follows, “[ICCRC] tried to persuade CIC that all ISAs should simply become RCICs. Some did and many others are in the process of doing so, however, many did not. CIC made it clear that ISAs must be able to continue to offer the immigration advice to international students and their dependents that they did before the passage of Bill C-35, without becoming RCICs. We therefore needed to find a way to regulate ISAs without requiring them to become RCICs. CIC also made it clear that they expected us to find a workable solution quickly.”
This imperative from CIC led the ICCRC to approve the introduction of a new credential – the Regulated International Student Immigration Advisor (RISIA) – at its AGM in Toronto yesterday. Under the revised by-laws adopted by ICCRC, experienced ISAs will be eligible to write a challenge exam in order to secure the RISIA credential. Newer staff will be required to take a training programme before taking the exam and, while there will be a cost associated with such training, the clear expectation is that the costs for institutions will be notably less than would be the case for RCIC training.
ICCRC adds, “As with RCICs, ISAs wanting to become RISIAs will be required to pass an exam – and if they are new ISAs they must also complete an education programme before writing that exam. They will need to show good conduct and character before being registered as RISIAs. Once registered, they will need to complete professional development hours, fulfill annual reporting obligations, have [liability] insurance, and otherwise meet professional standards similar to those that we require of RCICs now.”
ICCRC has indicated that the RISIA programme could launch as early as February 2015, and further details regarding training options and costs will be forthcoming. For additional background on the new RISIA designation, please see a set of Frequently Asked Questions prepared by ICCRC.

Source: http://monitor.icef.com/2014/12/canadian-immigration-reforms-continue-new-credential-introduced-international-student-advisors/

Canadian immigration reforms continue for international students.

A maple leaf painted on a sidewalk using a ste...
A maple leaf painted on a sidewalk using a stencil. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
At the recent annual conference of the Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE), officials from Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) reported on the continuing implementation of previously announced reforms to Canada’s International Student Program (ISP). The CIC briefing also highlighted several important service changes intended to improve Canadian visa processing.
In a related development, the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) moved to address a persistent critique of Canada’s Bill C-35 legislation (now the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act) by introducing a new professional designation that would permit international student advisors based at Canadian institutions to once again provide guidance to students regarding immigration issues. The new designation was formally approved at the council’s annual general meeting in Toronto yesterday.

Students migrating to Canada

Echoing an important observation from our recent report on Canadian enrolment trends, CIC officials affirmed that the number of former international students choosing to immigrate to Canada continues to increase.
They advised as well that former international students primarily immigrate to Canada via the following five programmes:
  • Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) – Under this option, Canadian provinces or territories can nominate people to immigrate to Canada based on their skills, education, and work experience.
  • Skilled Worker Class – This programme allows up to 25,500 skilled workers or professionals per year to apply directly for permanent residence status.
  • Family Class – This mechanism allows people to apply for permanent residency with a sponsorship from a family member who already has Canadian citizenship or is a permanent resident.
  • Canadian Experience Class – This programme allows up to 8,000 people per year who have already lived in Canada for some time, and have adapted to Canadian culture and language, to apply for permanent residency.
  • Investor Class – An option targeted to immigrant entrepreneurs planning to start a business in Canada.
Of these, CIC notes that for 2013, “Post-Graduation Work Permit holders who transitioned to permanent residence were most likely to do so through the Provincial Nominee Program.”
In a related development, in January 2015 CIC will launch a new electronic system calledExpress Entry to streamline permanent residency applications under the following programmes:
  • Skilled Worker Program;
  • Skilled Trades Program;
  • Canadian Experience Class.
In effect, Express Entry will become a required pre-application stage for these programmes, with the goal of creating a pool of pre-qualified applicants for permanent residency. Any prospective immigrant registered in the system could receive an invitation to apply for permanent residency in Canada, and Canadian provinces and territories will also be able to select candidates from the Express Entry pool under the Provincial Nominee Program and to meet local labour market needs.

Service improvements in 2014

CIC reports that processing times for online visa applications have declined over the past two years (from an average of 28 days as of September 2012 to 20 days as of October 2014), and that acceptance rates remain high. 82% of all study permit applications for Canada were approved in 2012, and, as the following table reflects, the acceptance rates for the top 10 source countries were at that level or higher in all cases except for India.
acceptance-rates-for-study-permit-applications-from-top-source-countries-2012
Acceptance rates for study permit applications from top source countries, 2012. Source: CIC
Along with an increasing emphasis on online applications and services, CIC aims to expand on this performance with a number of new service improvements introduced in 2014. Perhaps most notably, Canada has dramatically expanded the reach of its Visa Application Centres (VACs) this year, from a network of 60 sites in 2012 to 130 centres in 99 countries currently. Visa application centres provide services in local languages and accept applications for study permits, work permits, and visitor visas.

Source: http://monitor.icef.com/2014/12/canadian-immigration-reforms-continue-new-credential-introduced-international-student-advisors/

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Making an impression with a Canadian resume

A strong cover letter and resume are key tools to help you find a job in Canada. The guide below provides tips and practices on how to write an effective cover letter and resume. A Canadian resume is quite different to a Curriculum Vitae (CV) in length and the type of information included. Below is a list of certain information which should and should not be included. 


 
Cover Letter
A well-written cover letter will make you stand out from other applicants. The purpose of a cover letter is to entice the employer to learn more about you and read the resume by showcasing your skills and experience. In addition, your cover letter should explain why you are a good fit for the job. Aim to keep your cover letter to 3 short paragraphs and always address it to a specific person.
To learn more about creating your resume and cover letter visit:

Source; Opportunity Alberta

Express entry: How will skilled immigrants rank?

English: Canada House, London, October 2010.
English: Canada House, London, October 2010. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The government made public for the first time this week the details of the ranking system it will use to give skilled immigrants express entry into Canada within six months, starting Jan.1.
A total of 1,200 points will be allotted under the new system, but there's no minimum points level required to qualify. Only the "highest-ranking" candidates will be "invited to apply" for permanent residency.
A maximum of 600 points will be given to those who receive a permanent job offer from a Canadian employer or who have been nominated for immigration by a province or territory. These are the candidates that will be "picked first," Immigration Minister Chris Alexander said Monday in a written statement.
Up to 500 points will be allotted for age, education level, language proficiency and work experience in Canada, while a maximum of 100 points will be allotted for a combination of education level, foreign work experience and a certificate in the trades.
According to Statistics Canada's 2011 National Household Survey, immigrants to Canada are increasingly younger, more educated, and speak more languages.
The median age of newcomers in 2011 was 31.7 years, compared with 47.4 for the total immigrant population. A greater number of newcomers between 2006 to 2011 had an undergraduate degree in comparison to those who immigrated to Canada before 2006. Among recent immigrants, 66.8 per cent were able to speak English or French and one or more non-official languages, in comparison with 61.2 per cent of all immigrants.
Here are three examples of how prospective candidates could be ranked under the new system:
27-year-old software engineer and designer without a spouse
  • Age: 110 points.
  • Equivalent of a master's degree: 135 points.
  • Proficient in either English or French: up to 136 points.
  • Proficient in a second official language: up to 24 points.
  • Experience working in Canada: up to 80 points.
  • Transferable skills: up to 100 points.
  • Sub total: up to 585 out of 600 points.
  • No permanent job offer or a nomination from a province or territory: 0 points.
  • Total: up to 585 points.
32-year-old computer programmer and interactive media developer without a spouse
  • Age: 94 points.
  • Post-secondary program credential of three years or longer: 120 points.
  • Fully proficient in English: up to 136 points.
  • Doesn't know French: 0 points.
  • Has never worked in Canada before: 0 points.
  • Transferable skills: up to 100 points.
  • Sub total: up to 450 out of 600 points.
  • Plus up to 600 points for a permanent job offer or a nomination from a province or territory.
  • Total: up to 1,050 points.
45-year-old financial and investment analyst with a spouse
  • Age: 0 points.
  • With the equivalent of an undergraduate university degree: 120 points
  • Proficient in either English or French: up to 128 points.
  • Proficient in a second official language: up to 22 points.
  • Experience working in Canada: up to 70 points.
  • Spouse factors: up to 40 points.
  • Transferable skills: up to 100 points.
  • Sub total: up to 480 points out of 600 points.
  • Plus up to 600 points for a permanent job offer or a nomination from a province or territory.
  • Total: up to 1,080 points.
Source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/express-entry-how-will-skilled-immigrants-rank-1.2858150

Express Entry: What We Now Know

DECEMBER, 2014

With Canada’s much-anticipated Express Entry immigration selection system due to begin on January 1, 2015, we continue to learn more about how exactly it will operate. Many questions have been answered over the past few weeks, and we’re now in a position to share this information with you.
What we have known for some time is that Express Entry will function as a two-step process. Step one will involve candidates making an expression of interest in immigrating to Canada, with candidates who are eligible for one of the federal economic immigration programs entering the Express Entry pool. Step two will involve a portion of those candidates in the pool being issued invitations to apply for Canadian permanent residence. We invite you to read the CanadaVisa Express Entry page and comprehensive FAQ sheet, as well as watch CanadaVisa’s exclusive Express Entry video, in order to become familiar with how each of these steps will operate.
There will be no eligible occupations list
Whereas the current criteria for the Federal Skilled Worker Program includes a list of 50 eligible occupations, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has confirmed that, as of January 1, 2015, eligibility for the program will not include a list of eligible occupations. Instead, candidates will have to demonstrate that they have worked at least one year in a skilled occupation within the past 10 years. Jobs in Canada are classified by what are called National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes, which are divided by skill level and skill type.
Similarly, the current list of ineligible occupations under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) will not be in place under Express Entry.
All eligible applicants enter the same pool
The Express Entry pool will include candidates who are each eligible for at least one of Canada’s economic immigration programs, namely the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class. It has been confirmed that, once eligibility for one of these programs has been confirmed, all eligible candidates will enter the same pool. There will not be separate pools for specific programs.
Express Entry is a fully electronic system
It has been confirmed that the entire Express Entry process, including steps one and two, will be conducted online.
Details of the Comprehensive Ranking System
The Comprehensive Ranking System is the government of Canada’s internal mechanism for ranking candidates based on their human capital, determined by factors such as age, level of education, language ability, work experience, and whether the candidate has received a job offer from a Canadian employer or a provincial nomination. This helps CIC to decide which candidates may be issued invitations to apply for permanent residence.
Details of the ranking system were disclosed recently. There will be up to 500 points available for a candidate’s core human capital (candidates with an accompanying spouse or common-law partner may be awarded up to 460 points for their own core human capital, with a further 40 points available for the core human capital of the spouse or common-law partner), as well as 100 points for skills transferability based on specific combinations of a candidate’s core human capital. An additional 600 points will be awarded to candidates with a confirmed job offer (i.e. having received a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment) in a skilled occupation or a nomination from a Canadian province or territory.
For full details and a complete overview of the Comprehensive Ranking System, please see this CanadaVisa page. Once you have reviewed the system, we invite you to use the new CanadaVisa Comprehensive Ranking Score Calculator. In just a couple of minutes this valuable tool will let you know your score, which will assist you in your preparation for Express Entry.
Language testing will be required before going into the Express Entry pool
CIC has confirmed that candidates will have to demonstrate proficiency in an official language of Canada, either English or French, in order to enter the Express Entry pool. Language ability is determined by the candidate sitting a standardised language test, the most common of which are the IELTS or CELPIP for English and TEF for French. Candidates will not be able to enter the Express Entry pool without submitting language test results that meet the eligibility requirements for one of the federal economic immigration programs.
An Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) will be required going into the pool for candidates eligible for the Federal Skilled Worker Program
Candidates eligible to enter the Express Entry pool under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) must get an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) of their completed foreign educational credentials before making an expression of interest in immigrating to Canada. It was previously unknown whether an ECA would be required for step one, but it has now been confirmed that an ECA will be required from the outset in order for a candidate to prove eligibility for the FSWP and enter the Express Entry pool.
Candidates can update their profiles while in the Express Entry pool
One of the most beneficial recent pieces of news for potential candidates is that their profiles in the pool will not be “locked”. On the contrary, candidates will be able to maneuver within theComprehensive Ranking System if they gain additional points, which they may do by, among other things: improving language test results, proving ability in a second official language, completing a diploma, or gaining additional work experience. We invite you to use the new CanadaVisaComprehensive Ranking Score Calculator. In just a couple of minutes this valuable tool will let you know your score, which will assist you in your preparation for Express Entry.
Penalties of up to five years for misrepresentation
The government of Canada has recently introduced new measures that aim to ensure the integrity of its immigration programs and processes. Among these measures are more severe penalties for misrepresentation than were previously in place, with the penalty for misrepresentation increasing from a two- to a five-year period of inadmissibility, as well as a five-year ban on applying for permanent resident status. Candidates who are found to have given false information during any stage of the Express Entry process, including step one, will be subject to these new penalties.
The first draw from the Express Entry pool is scheduled to take place before the end of January, 2015
CIC recently stated its intention to perform the first draw (i.e. issue the first invitations to apply) before the end of January, 2015. This is likely to benefit candidates who have prepared in advance, sat language tests, and gathered supporting documents, as they are the candidates most likely to be in a position to accept an invitation to apply, if offered one.
From the date that an invitation to apply is received, applicants will have only 60 days to file a complete application
CIC has confirmed that once an invitation to apply has been issued to a candidate, he or she will have only 60 days to file a complete application and all supporting documents. No extensions will be granted. Given this limited timeframe, applicants are encouraged to gather these documents in advance. Moreover, when taking the penalties for misrepresentation into account, it is important that the information provided and documents submitted are completely accurate. Candidates may engage the services of a Canadian immigration lawyer in order to assist in preparing a complete and accurate application.
If an applicant accepts an invitation to apply, but fails to submit a complete application and all supporting documents, the applicant will not have a second opportunity to file the an application under the same invitation to apply
If an invitation to apply is issued but the applicant subsequently submits an incomplete application or fails to submit an application, the applicant will not have a second opportunity to submit the application for permanent residence under the same invitation to apply. In addition, his or her expression of interest ceases to be valid regardless of the portion of the one-year period that remains and, as a result, he or she will no longer be in the Express Entry pool. This stresses the importance of preparation on the part of the applicant.
If a candidate declines an invitation to apply, he or she will re-enter the Express Entry pool until 12 months have passed since he or she was deemed eligible to enter the pool
Certain candidates, upon receiving an invitation to apply, may feel that they are not prepared to submit a complete application and all supporting documents within the 60-day timeframe set by CIC. As such, they may decline the invitation. If an applicant declines the invitation within the 60-day period, the remaining portion of the original one-year period of their inclusion in the Express Entry pool of candidates continues to apply. Candidate, however, should be aware that there is no guarantee of being issued a second (or third, etc.) invitation to apply. Potential candidates are encouraged to prepare well in advance so that they may be in a position to accept an invitation to apply, in the event that one is offered, and submit a complete application and all supporting documents within 60 days.
Candidates will know their Comprehensive Ranking System points total and what the points threshold was for the most recent draw, but will not know their specific ranking
Candidates in the pool will be able to see their points total under the Comprehensive Ranking System, but there will be no concrete pass mark to trigger an invitation to apply for permanent residence. The points total that a candidate may need in order to receive an invitation to apply can change fluidly as other candidates enter and leave the pool. CIC has confirmed, however, that candidates will be able to know the points that were required in order to receive an invitation to apply for the most recent draw from the Express Entry pool.
Provincial Nominee Programs will continue to exist outside the Express Entry system, but provinces will also be able to select a portion of candidates from the Express Entry pool
As has been the case in recent years, Canadian provinces and territories will continue to be able to craft their own immigration programs based on provincial labour market needs. These are known as the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs). Indeed, the federal government’s Immigration Plan for 2015, announced last month, gives a greater allocation to the PNPs than has been the case in recent years.
We have known for some time that provinces and territories will also be able to select a portion of their PNPs from the Express Entry pool. What we can additionally confirm at this stage is that applicants with a provincial nomination certificate who also qualify in one of the federal economic immigration programs may enter the Express Entry pool and, having been awarded an additional 600 points under the Comprehensive Ranking System as a result of the provincial nomination, be invited to apply for permanent residence.
Quebec applications will not be conducted through Express Entry, except where the applicant will be working outside Quebec for a Quebec-based company
Under the Canada-Quebec Accord of 1991, Quebec chooses its own immigrants and sets eligibility criteria that are separate from the criteria set by the federal government. Because of this arrangement, Quebec will not actively participate in the Express Entry system for Canadian immigration. Instead, Quebec is scheduled to reopen its skilled worker stream and experience program in April, 2015. Candidates applying for one of these programs must have the intention to reside in Quebec.
We recently learned, however, that candidates who indicate that they intend to live and work outside Quebec but have a job offer from a company based in Quebec will be able to participate in the Express Entry system. An example of this would be a company whose main headquarters and operations are based in Quebec, but who also have an office in another Canadian city.
The territory of Nunavut will also not participate under the Express Entry system. The two other territories and nine other provinces (i.e. all provinces except Quebec) have indicated that they will participate in the federal Express Entry system.
The revised Canada Job Bank will be ready on January 1, but job matching with Canadian employers will not
Candidates who don’t have a confirmed job offer in a skilled occupation or a provincial nomination going into the pool will be required to register on Canada’s updated Job Bank, which is expected to be ready for this purpose when Express Entry launches on January 1, 2015.
One of the main differences between the Express Entry system, compared with current and previous Canadian immigration systems, is that Canadian employers will play a greater role in the process. Under Express Entry, Canadian employers are scheduled to be able to identify candidates in the Express Entry pool and submit job offers to them. In communications throughout this year, CIC has likened the role of Express Entry in connecting skilled candidates with Canadian employers as ‘matchmaking’.
It has recently been confirmed, however, that the job matching facility in Express Entry is highly unlikely to be fully operational when the system launches on January 1, 2015. For candidates who don’t have a job offer, this may serve as an incentive to prepare an application early. Moreover, candidates can join the CanadaVisa portal, where they can promote themselves and connect with employers.
The ages of dependent children will be determined only at the date the application for permanent residence is received, not at the date of entry to the pool
As is the case under existing immigration programs, successful applicants are entitled to bring their spouse or common-law partner, as well as dependent children, to Canada, once requisite medical and criminal background checks have been made. For the purposes of Canadian immigration, dependent children are defined as biological or adopted children under the age of 19.
It was previously unknown whether the ages of dependent children would be determined when the candidate enters the Express Entry pool, or when the invitation to apply for permanent residence has been issued, or when the application has been submitted. CIC has since confirmed that the ages of dependent children will be determined only at the date the application for permanent residence is received.
The government of Canada aims to attract 181,000 new immigrants through economic immigration programs in 2015
The Canadian government’s immigration plan stated that the government aims to attract up to 285,000 new immigrants in 2015, around 181,000 of which are scheduled to be economic migrants (i.e. not under family sponsorship or refugee/humanitarian cases). The majority of these economic migrants are expected to immigrate to Canada under the Express Entry system and, while the government has indicated an allocation for each economic program, the specific number of invitations to apply that may be issued under each of the economic immigration programs may be flexible.
Candidates may hire an immigration lawyer
CIC has confirmed that candidates may hire an immigration lawyer or consultant registered with the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) to represent them throughout the Express Entry process.
The reaction
“As we get closer to launch day, we’re receiving more information about how Express Entry will operate. Some of this new information is relatively minor in the greater scheme of things, but some of the new information appears to be highly significant for candidates,” says Attorney David Cohen. “For example, details of the Comprehensive Ranking System paint a clearer picture of how candidates will be assessed once they have entered the pool. It shows just how valuable a skilled job offer or provincial nomination will be. My team and I are proud to launch our free Comprehensive Ranking Score Calculator, which will assist candidates in preparing for the Express Entry system.
“It has also been confirmed that the government’s job matching facility will not be in place when Express Entry is launched. It remains to be seen how this will affect the early stages of the system.”
To find out if you are eligible for any of over 60 Canadian immigration programs, including the federal economic programs that will be conducted under Express Entry, please fill out a free online assessment today.

Source: http://www.cicnews.com/2014/12/express-entry-124159.html