Express Entry is the main application process for permanent residency in Canada. It has three main pathways:
Canadian Experience Class
Federal Skilled Worker Program
Federal Skilled Trade Program
Canada plans to welcome 82,880 people in 2023, 110,770 in 2024, and 117,500 in 2025 as permanent residents through the Express Entry system.
What you need to know
What is Express Entry?
Express Entry is Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) online system for applications for permanent residency.
To be entered into the pool of candidates, you need to complete an Express Entry profile. If you meet the criteria of one of the three pathways (CEC, FSW, FSTP) your application will be accepted into the pool, and you will be ranked based on a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS).
CRS points are awarded using the information in your Express Entry profile. Candidates with the highest scores in the pool will be issued an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence. Invitations to Apply are based on draws which generally happen every two weeks.
How do I qualify for Express Entry?
To qualify for Express Entry, you must first meet the criteria of one of the existing pathways to permanent residency:
Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) Program
Federal Skilled Trade (FST) Program
You will then be assessed based on your age, education, language skills, work experience, and whether you have a provincial nomination, Canadian educational credentials or a qualifying job offer in Canada.
Based on this information in your Express Entry profile, you will be given a CRS score and ranked against other candidates.
In June 2023 the federal government started running targeted Express Entry draws for candidates who meet certain criteria such as French language abilities and work experience in specific NOCs. More information on the criteria for the category specific draws for 2023 can be found here. In order to qualify for the category specific Express Entry draws, candidates must first be eligible for one of the existing Express Entry programs and be in the Express Entry pool.
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What is the benefit of a provincial nomination for Express Entry?
If you have a provincial nomination, you’re awarded an additional 600 CRS points. Provinces select candidates to apply for a nomination from among those in the Express Entry pool based on score and various other criteria such as selected “province of interest”.
What is the benefit of an LMIA for Express Entry?
If you have an LMIA-supported work permit and a qualifying offer of employment, you’re eligible for either 50 or 200 points, depending on your job’s National Occupational Classification (NOC).
If you’re in a NOC TEER 0 major group 00 position, you’re eligible for 200 points for having a qualifying offer of employment. If you’re in a NOC TEER 0, 1, 2 or 3 occupation, you’re eligible for 50 points.
If you have an employer-specific work permit and have worked for your employer for at least a year, you may also be eligible for points for having a qualifying offer of arranged employment.
How can Lighthouse Immigration Law help?
We will advise you on your eligibility for immigrating to Canada via Express Entry and make the application process as straightforward as possible.
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