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Canada PR from Australia

If you’re an Australian looking to move to Canada on a permanent basis, you’ll have to apply for a route that allows you to eventually obtain permanent resident (PR) status.

Total Law’s professional immigration lawyers can help assist with every step of the immigration process – from your first application to helping you settle into your new home in Canada. For more information about the services we offer, call us on +44 (0)333 305 9375 or reach out to us online.

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    Overview of Canada PR from Australia

    Canadian permanent residence status is the term given to individuals who have obtained the right to reside in Canada on a permanent, indefinite basis.

    Permanent residency is not the same as citizenship, although Canadian permanent residents do have the option to apply for citizenship after a certain period of time.

    There are multiple immigration programs that will allow you to become a Canadian permanent resident. These include (but may not be limited to) the following:

    • Express Entry pathways, including:
      • Federal Skilled Worker Program
      • Federal Skilled Trades Program
      • Canadian Experience Class
    • Provincial Nominee Programs
    • Atlantic Immigration Program
    • Family Sponsorship

    These routes to permanent residency are outlined in more detail below.

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    What Are the Benefits of Canadian Permanent Residency?

    Obtaining permanent residence status carries with it a significant number of benefits that non-permanent residents do not have access to.

    These include the following:

    • Access to social welfare and benefits
    • Free access to the Canadian healthcare system
    • The ability to live, study and work anywhere in Canada without restrictions
    • Protection under Canadian law and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms
    • The ability to travel to and from Canada without restriction
    • The ability to apply for Canadian citizenship

    Note, however, that Canadian permanent residents cannot:

    • Vote in Canadian elections
    • Run for public office
    • Work certain jobs that need a high-level security clearance
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    What is Express Entry?


    The Express Entry system is one of the most popular immigration routes to Canada. It focuses exclusively on those who are looking to work in Canada and wish to eventually apply for permanent residency.

    Express Entry has three main pathways, which are outlined in the following subsections.

    Federal Skilled Worker Program

    The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) is Canada’s general immigration route for those who have foreign work experience.

    In order to be eligible for this program, you must meet the following eligibility criteria:

    • You have an adequate amount of work experience in a job in a valid National Occupational Classification (NOC) category
    • You have passed an approved English or French language test and have scored at least the minimum score in the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) assessment
    • You have a Canadian educational qualification, or an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) for your foreign qualification
    • You have enough money to support yourself and your family in Canada

    A wide range of jobs and professions are eligible for the FSWP.

    Applicants for the FSWP must accrue a certain amount of points in order to be able to submit an application. Scores are marked out of 100 and cover areas such as the following:

    • Age
    • Education
    • Work experience
    • Whether you have a valid job offer
    • English or French language skills
    • How well you’re likely to settle in Canada

    Federal Skilled Trades Program

    The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)  is similar to the Federal Skilled Worker Program, except that it is aimed at those who have work experience in a skilled trade.

    In order to be eligible for this program, you must meet the following eligibility criteria:

    • You must have at least 2 years of full-time work experience (or an equal amount of part-time work experience) in a skilled trade
    • You have passed an approved English or French language test and have scored at least the minimum score in the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) assessment
    • You have a valid job offer of full-time employment in Canada or a certificate of qualification in your skilled trade
    • You have enough money to support yourself and your family in Canada

    Applicants for the FSTP must normally have their trade assessed by the province or territory of Canada that they wish to reside in when applying.

    Canadian Experience Class

    The third Express Entry program is Canadian Experience Class (CEC), which is aimed at applicants who already have Canadian work experience.

    In order to be eligible for this program, you must meet the following eligibility criteria:

    • You must have at least 1 year of skilled work experience in Canada
    • You have passed an approved English or French language test and have scored at least the minimum score in the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) assessment

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      Provincial Nominee Programs

      Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) are an alternative route to Canadian permanent residency.

      Immigration via PNP works via two stages:

      • You apply to your preferred Canadian province or territory for nomination
      • After receiving nomination, you then apply to Immigration, Refugees, Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for permanent residence status

      The PNP is unique in that the eligibility requirements vary greatly based on which province or territory you wish to apply with. However, the basic eligibility criteria for PNP applications may include (but not be limited to) the following:

      • You should have a valid job offer from an employer based in that province or territory
      • You have the required work experience, educational qualifications and English or French language skills
      • You intend to live in that province or territory permanently
      • You have enough money to support yourself and your family

      Atlantic Immigration Program

      The Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP) is similar to the PNP in that it focuses on individual regions of Canada. However, as the name suggests, only the four Atlantic provinces of Canada participate in this program. These are:

      • New Brunswick
      • Nova Scotia
      • Prince Edward Island
      • Newfoundland and Labrador

      Similarly to other permanent residency routes the AIP requires applicants to:

      • Have enough valid work experience, unless you’re a graduate from a valid post-secondary institution in one of the four Atlantic provinces
      • Meet the minimum educational requirements
      • Meet the minimum English or French language requirements
      • Have enough money to support yourself and your family

      You must also have a valid job offer from a designated employer in an Atlantic province in order to be eligible.

      Family Sponsorship

      One potential route of Canadian permanent residency form Australia is if you already have relatives who live in Canada.

      You can generally apply for this route if you are the spouse, partner or dependent child of a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.

      If you are the brother, sister, cousin, aunt or uncle of a Canadian, you may be eligible for this stream in very specific circumstances. However, note that the eligibility criteria in this case can be very narrow.

      Generally speaking, the eligibility requirements for family sponsorship are as follows:

      • Your sponsor must be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or registered as Indian under the Canadian Indian Act
      • Your sponsor must be over 18
      • Your sponsor can provide for your basic needs when you’re in Canada and support you financially

      There are also a number of eligibility requirements depending on what type of relation you have with your sponsor. For example, if your sponsor is your non-married partner, you must have been living together for at least 12 consecutive months with no long periods of living apart.

      Our team of immigration experts stays up-to-date with the latest changes to provide you with accurate and reliable information for your Canadian PR. Contact Us

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        How Do I Apply for Permanent Residency?


        The specific steps to applying for PR will vary greatly depending on your chosen route. It’s important to carefully research and plan your application process and the specific eligibility criteria for your route to ensure that you don’t make any errors.

        For example, applying for Express Entry will involve putting together an Express Entry profile using the online portal and entering the Express Entry pool. You’ll also be ranked using the Comprehensive Ranking System.

        From that point, you’ll receive an invitation to apply for permanent residency if you’ve scored highly enough compared to the other candidates.

        As previously mentioned, routes such as the PNP and AIP require you to follow specific steps by approaching individual Canadian provinces and territories. In each of these programs, however, you will eventually apply to IRCC for permanent resident status online.

        Applications for Family Sponsorship must be made online through the IRCC website.

        Visa Application Centres in Australia

        After you apply, you will normally have to attend a local visa application centre to give your biometrics in the form of your fingerprints and photograph.

        Canadian visa application centres in Australia are located in the following major cities:

        • Melbourne
        • Perth
        • Sydney

        You may also have to attend a medical exam to ensure that you’re not medically inadmissible to Canada.

        Applications for Canadian permanent residency are made much easier with the assistance of a professional immigration lawyer by your side. Reach out to Total Law’s expert immigration advisers today for one-to-one help and advice for your application. Call us on +44 (0)333 305 9375 or reach out to us online.

        What Documents Will I Require?

        The specific documents you will require for your PR application will depend on the specific route you have chosen to apply for.

        However, the documents you’ll need to apply for PR may include (but not be limited to) the following:

        • A valid passport or travel document
        • Proof of either foreign or Canadian work experience
        • A Canadian educational qualification or an educational credential assessment report
        • A written job offer from a Canadian employer
        • Proof of nomination from a Canadian province
        • Proof of family link, such as a marriage certificate or birth certificate
        • Proof of funds
        • English or French language test results
        • Medical exam certificate
        • Police certificate

        How Much Does Permanent Residency Cost?

        The specific fees for Canadian permanent residency will vary based on your chosen route and your own specific circumstances.

        As a broad overview, however, the application fees for PR routes are outlined below:

        RouteApplication Fee (in CAD$)
        Federal Skilled Worker1,365
        Federal Skilled Trades1,365
        Canadian Experience Class1,365
        Provincial Nominee Program1,365
        Atlantic Immigration Program1,365
        Family Sponsorship1,080

        Additional fees may also include CAD$85 to give your biometrics information and fees to have your official documents translated into English or French if necessary.

        How Can Total Law Help?

        Canada is one of the most desirable countries in the world to immigrate to, and often cited as one of the most popular destinations for Australians to move to.

        If you’re an Australian looking to move to Canada and obtain permanent residency there, Total Law can help.

        We offer full, comprehensive legal services for a wide range of international clientele, including for Australia and Canada immigration. Regardless of your personal circumstances or immigration goals, we have the tools and knowledge to help get you to where you want to be.

        Whether you’re a skilled worker looking to bring your expertise to Canada, looking to settle permanently in a specific region or province, or looking to join a close family member to start your new life with them in Canada, we can help.

        For more information about the services we offer and what we could do for your Canada PR visa application, reach out to us on +44 (0)333 305 9375 or reach out to us online.

        Our expert lawyers can answer any of your questions about your Canadian PR status. Contact Us

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                    Frequently Asked Questions

                    If you’re an Australian citizen studying in Canada or planning to study in Canada, it is entirely possible for you to be able to obtain permanent residency via a Canadian student visa.

                    You can do this by applying directly to a Canadian immigration route such as a Provincial Nominee Program or Canadian Experience Class when you graduate. Some of these will require you to have graduated from an eligible Canadian institute or have Canadian work experience, which would suit foreign students well.

                    Alternatively, you may apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit, which will allow you to stay and work in Canada after your studies.

                    You can then use your work experience to apply for a PR immigration route.

                    If you wish to visit Canada before committing to applying for permanent residency there, there are a number of options available to you.

                    Firstly, you can visit Canada for a period of up to 6 months for tourism. If you’ll be flying to Canada from Australia, you’ll need to apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization. If you’ll be travelling to Canada via any other form of transport such as boat, you’ll only need your valid Australian passport.

                    Note that you will not be able to work in Canada as a visitor.

                    Alternatively, if you’re aged between 18 and 35, you can participate in International Experience Canada (IEC). This is a scheme to allow young people the opportunity to come and work in Canada for short periods of time. There are three categories of IEC:

                    • Working holiday
                    • Young professionals
                    • International Co-op (Internship)

                    Once you’ve been in Canada with permanent resident status for a certain period of time, you may be able to apply for Canadian citizenship.

                    Broadly speaking, you must meet the following criteria in order to be eligible for citizenship. You must:

                    • Have permanent resident status
                    • Have lived in Canada for at least 3 out of the previous 5 years prior to the date of application
                    • Have filed your taxes according to government guidelines
                    • Pass the Canadian citizenship test
                    • Prove your language skills in English or French

                    Australia allows its citizens to be dual citizens, which means that you will be able to apply for Canadian citizenship and retain your Australian citizenship also.

                    Australian applicants can apply for Canadian citizenship either online through the IRCC website or by paper.