Beginning on January 1, 2015, the Express Entry system will introduce a whole new procedure for managing Foreign Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Foreign Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), and a portion of the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) applications more efficiently. The new system will involve the following steps:
1) Creating a profile on the national Job Bank, and registering for the Express Entry system;
2) Applicants will be entered into a candidate pool, and will be given a ranking depending on their stated qualifications. A maximum of 1200 points may be awarded to each candidate;
3) Candidates will receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) if they have: (a) a job offer and a valid LMIA; (b) a PNP offer; or (c) very high rankings;
4) Upon receiving an ITA, a candidate will have 60 days to submit a complete application for permanent residency, which will be processed in six (6) months or less.
Several aspects of the Express Entry system continue to raise questions, such as the frequency of ITA draws, the challenge of acquiring police certificates and medical examinations within the 60 day limit of an ITA, and the impact of the system’s unpredictability.
Nevertheless, CIC believes that the benefits of the Express Entry system will make the transition worthwhile. The system is designed to be more responsive to employer needs, as it prioritizes candidates based on their ranking, regardless of when they applied. Proponents of the system say that Express Entry will give employers a more direct impact on economic immigration to Canada, and the government has stated that its objective is to admit 180,000 economic immigrants in 2015 through the Express Entry system.
For further details regarding the Express Entry system, or assistance in utilizing this new application system, please contact PricewaterhouseCoopers Immigration Law LLP.