How to Become A Permanent Resident in Canada
Canada is one of the world’s most sought-after destinations for migrants. The country offers a prime quality of life and a robust economy that provides a vast number of employment options in numerous industries. If you are looking to make Canada your new home, then it is likely that you will need to become a permanent resident. In this article, we will look at the permanent residence system in Canada. We will provide all the information that you need to ensure that you know how the system works and to help you establish whether you are eligible to move to the country.
How Do I Become A Permanent Resident in Canada?
To start the process of becoming a permanent resident in Canada, you will need to first ensure that you are eligible (we lay this out in the next section). If you are eligible, you will need to contact your local Canadian embassy or consulate. Once you have started the process, you will need to complete an application form.
As well as filling out an application form, you will also need to provide a number of supporting documents. These will depend entirely on your specific situation, but commonly required documents are laid out below:
- Criminal record check
- Medical certificate
- Education history
- Proof of sufficient funds to support your stay in Canada
- Proof of refugee status
Once you have collated these documents, you will need to submit them with your application and pay the relevant fee. After submission, you will then likely need to attend several interviews with your local embassy/consulate. At these interviews, they may require you to supply additional documents and take a skills test. While the process is strict and somewhat lengthy, it is important that the process is adhered to.
Eligibility Requirements for Permanent Residency in Canada
Much the same as many other countries, Canada has a variety of eligibility routes for those who wish to become permanent residents. Among these, the most popular routes are Express Entry and Family Sponsorship. Below we have looked at these two in a little more detail:
The Express Entry route is an umbrella term that covers three programs: The Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class. It aims at these routes at highly skilled individuals who can add to the Canadian economic system. These programs offer the best option for those who wish to immigrate to Canda to work.
You will need to meet the minimum criteria for at least one program. You can check your eligibility by completing an online assessment. When you make an application, you will need to prove your claims with documentary evidence.
Related Article: Read more on ‘How to gain express entry through a Canadian Visa’ here
The Family Sponsorship route allows those already in Canada as either a citizen, a permanent resident or a person who is classified as an Indian under the Canadian Indian Act to sponsor specific family members to move to the country. Those who can be sponsored include a spouse, a child, a parent, a grandparent and assorted family members. Under this route, the sponsor must prove that they can provide for the family member and that they will not need governmental support.
Application Process to Become A Permanent Resident in Canada
To apply to become a permanent resident in Canada, you will first need to ensure that you meet the requirements under one of the available programs - it is likely that you will use one of the two we have laid out in the section above. Canadian immigration has created many tools to help you establish whether one of these options is the right one for you. Once you have established eligibility, it will be time to contact the embassy or consulate in your country of residence. Here they will help by providing a form for you to complete.
When you complete the form, you will also need to add any information required. As we laid out in an earlier section, this will include items such as proof of your skills, financial statements, a medical certificate and a criminal records check.
Once you have everything together, you can then submit an application. It is likely that you will attend several interviews at your local consulate/embassy. These interviews are to ascertain that all details provided are correct and to ask additional questions that may be required.
After your application process is complete, they should then give you an expected processing time and details to track your application. Please note that Canadian immigration processing can take quite a while, so prepare yourself for an extended wait for a decision.
Becoming A Canadian Citizen
The next logical step for those who have permanent residence in Canada is opting to apply for Canadian citizenship. Like many countries, Canada offers the option for permanent residents to become citizens of the country. If you decide that you would like to become a Canadian citizen, you will need to meet the following criteria:
- Have permanent residence
- Have lived in Canada for 3 out of the last 5 years
- Have filed taxes as required
- Pass a test on your rights, responsibilities and knowledge of Canada
- Prove your language skills
These rules apply to the vast majority of cases - even spouses. If you marry a Canadian citizen, you do not automatically become one yourself, you need to apply and meet the eligibility criteria.
As long as you meet the eligibility criteria, you can request an application package. Once received, you will need to fill out the form, provide proof as required, and pay a fee. You will receive your decision in due course.