If you are a temporary foreign worker or a foreign student, and have skilled work experience in Canada, you may be in a good position to move from temporary to permanent residence under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC).
After you have lived in Canada for some time, you may have good English or French skills, the right kind of skilled work experience, and be used to Canadian society. The Canadian Experience Class (CEC) was created to help people like this take part in the Canadian economy.
If you have been working or studying in Canada, you already know why, year after year, Canada is consistently ranked as one of the best countries in the world in which to live. From a strong, stable economy to the beauty of its natural environment, Canada offers an exceptionally high quality of life. With the knowledge, skills and experience you have gained in Canada, you could qualify to make Canada your permanent home.
If you are a temporary foreign worker or a foreign student, and have skilled work experience in Canada, you may be in a good position to move from temporary to permanent residence under the (CEC). You should have knowledge of English or French and qualifying work experience. If you are currently in Vancouver, feel free to contact our office for a personal assessment.
As of January 2015, we have a new system for people to apply to this program. It is called Express Entry.
You can use our online tool, Come to Canada, to see if you meet the criteria to get into the Express Entry pool.
- have at least 12 months of full-time (or an equal amount in part-time) skilled work experience in Canada in the three years before you apply,
- have gained your experience in Canada with the proper authorization,
- meet the required language levels needed for your job for each language ability (speaking, reading, writing and listening),
- plan to live outside the province of Quebec.
Self-employment and work experience gained while you were a full-time student (for example, on a co-op work term) does not count under this program.
Note: The province of Quebec does not use Express Entry. They select their own skilled workers. See Quebec-selected skilled workers to find out more.
Skilled work experience
To be considered for the Canadian Experience Class, you need to have Canadian skilled work experience within three years of applying. According to the Canadian National Occupational Classification (NOC), skilled work experience means:
- Managerial jobs (NOC skill level 0)
- Professional jobs (NOC skill type A)
- Technical jobs and skilled trades (NOC skill type B)
Your experience must be at least 12 months of full-time (30 hours of paid work per week or more) or an equal amount in part-time hours.
|Full Time||Part time|
|30 hours/week for 12 months
1 year full time (1560 hours)
|15 hours/week for 24 months
1 year full time (1560 hours)
|30 hours/week for 12 months at more than one job
1 year full time (1560 hours)
You must show that you did the duties set out in the lead statement of the occupational description in the NOC, including all the essential duties and most of the main duties listed.
If you do not show that your experience meets the description in the NOC, we will not accept your application.
If your existing work permit is about to expire you may be eligible for a bridging open work permit. Bridging open work permits allow qualified applicants to keep working while they await a final decision on their permanent residence application.
There is no education requirement for Canadian Experience Class. But, if you want to earn points for your education under Express Entry, you either need:
- a Canadian secondary (high school) or post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree, or
- an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report produced by an agency approved by CIC to show your education is equal to Canadian education standards.
- meet the minimum language level of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 for NOC 0 or A jobs OR Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 for NOC B jobs, and
- take a language test approved by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that shows you meet the level for speaking, listening, reading and writing.
You must show that you meet the requirements in English or French by including the test results when you complete your Express Entry profile. Your test results must not be more than two years old on the day you apply for permanent residence or you will need to retake the tests.
If you are married or live with a common-law foreign national partner in Canada, and that person also meets the above conditions, you can decide which one of you will apply under Express Entry as the principal (main) applicant.
A common-law partner is a person who has lived with you in a conjugal relationship for at least one year. Common-law partner refers to both opposite-sex and same-sex couples.
Check to see which one of you is most likely to be found eligible. That person should apply as the principal applicant.
If you have skilled work experience and want to live in Canada permanently, use our Come to Canada tool to see if you are eligible for the Express Entry pool.
You may need a criminal and security check (police certificate) if you are coming to Canada as a:
- live-in caregiver,
- student or
- temporary worker.
When you apply to become a permanent resident, you must get a police certificate.
If your certificate is in a language other than English or French, send it when you apply, along with the original copy of a translation done by a certified translator.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) uses police certificates to find out if you have a criminal record. They help visa officers make sure you are not a security risk to Canada.
Learn more about police certificates (police checks).
Note: Police certificates (Police Checks) are generally considered to be valid for 3 months from the date of issue; therefore depending on the processing time of your application, you may be requested to submit new certificates. The Police Certificate (Police Check) must be issued no more than three months before you apply.
We shall send the detailed checklist of documents required to be submitted and provide further necessary guidance upon your signing the Retainer Agreement with us.
Our goal is to provide each client with a successful outcome by determining the most appropriate solution. If you would like to know whether you could be eligible to immigrate to Canada, we invite you to complete our online assessment questionnaire.
If you are interested in seeking professional assistance to guide you through the immigration process or if you have any questions, please contact us.
Becoming Canadian: Canadian Experience Class Students