A new option has just opened up which makes it easier for international students who have already graduated to get permanent residence in Canada. This pathway is open from May 6 until November 5, 2021 or until 40,000 applications are received – whichever occurs first.
Below is an outline of the main criteria for this pathway. Watch this space for more details as they are released before the new program opens on May 6, 2021.
New Rules for International Students — Do You Qualify?
The criteria for this new pathway is now established. As a principal applicant, you must:
- be present in Canada when you apply and until you are approved for PR
- have lawful temporary status in Canada, or be eligible to restore your status
- have graduated from a qualifying program of study from an eligible DLI
- have completed your Canadian studies after January 1, 2017
- are currently working in paid employment (not self-employed)
- have CLB 5 in all language skills on a valid a test (less than 2 years old) and
- meet all admissibility requirements.
If you meet all of the above criteria, you do not need a valid post graduate work permit at the time of application. Nor must your current job need be a skilled occupation or related to your field of study. This pathway does not use a points system like Express Entry – the above criteria alone allow you to apply for PR.
Importantly, if you meet the criteria and also speak French, there is a separate pathway that may be more predictable for you as it has no numerical cap. It is also open until Nov. 5, 2021.
What is a Qualifying Program of Study
For the purposes of this program, your study in Canada must have resulted in a post grad work permit and must have been one of the following credentials:
- a degree (Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s or Doctorate)
- a program of any duration that allowed you to gain work in specific skilled trades that have been listed by IRCC
- one or more diplomas or certificates that total studies of at least 16 months in duration – you can combine 2 diplomas of 8 months each, if applicable
How to Apply
Applications through this program need to be made through the IRCC online portal. Ensure that you create an account with IRCC if you don’t have one already. All necessary documents must be submitted upfront through the portal, including the following:
- Proof of Canadian studies – degree or diploma plus transcripts
- Valid language test results – IELTS or CELPIP
- Police clearances for all adults included in the application
- Upfront medical exams completed by a panel physician
- Proof of valid status in Canada
- Proof of current employment
Steps to Obtain Permanent Residence in Canada for International Students
There are a number of steps to take immediately to ensure that you are able to submit your application before this program is full:
- Book a language test if your current results are more than 2 years old. The agencies in Canada are CELPIP and IELTS – find the one nearest to you and book the general test for immigration purposes.
- Book immigration medical exams for you and the members of your immediate family.
- Apply for police certificates from each country where you lived for at least six months in the past 10 years. All adults included in the application require police certificates. You do not need police certificates from Canada.
- Meet with a professional to ensure that you are on track to be successful with your application.
More Tips for Using this Pathway to Permanent Residence
The new rules for international students in Canada are exciting – but this window of opportunity is very short term and the program will close as soon as the required number of applications have been received. You need to work quickly and you need to submit a perfect application – or you will be disappointed. Our advice is to seek a consultation with a professional if any of the following apply:
- You are not certain if you qualify.
- You are not clear on the precise documents needed in your case.
- You might have difficulty getting necessary documents such as police certificates.
- You have family members abroad you want to include, or you are not certain which family members you can include.
- Your current status in Canada is unclear.
- If this is your only opportunity to apply for Permanent Residence in Canada. If you won’t eventually qualify through any other program like Express Entry or a Provincial Nominee Program, then you really need to make sure that this once in a lifetime opportunity is handled properly.
The Way Immigration has helped hundreds of international students make the transition to permanent residency. We are familiar with the pitfalls you must avoid if your application is to be successful. Arrange an appointment today with one of our Canadian immigration experts to ensure that you qualify, that your supporting documents are in order and that you will be able to submit your application before the category is full.