1. What is a Canadian Immigrant Visa?
An Immigrant Visa is a document which allows a person to live and work anywhere
in Canada, and confers upon that person permanent resident status. It comes
with certain responsibilities and can be revoked if the holder is out of the
country for too long, or is guilty of some criminal activity. A person who is a
Canadian permanent resident may apply for Canadian Citizenship after 3 years.
2. Can I apply for permanent resident status and temporary status at the
You can apply for permanent resident status and temporary status at the same
time (dual intent). Doing so will not harm your application for permanent
resident status. However, your application for temporary status may be affected
because an impression will have been created that you do not intend to leave
Canada upon the expiration of your temporary status. Therefore it is better to
apply for temporary status before you apply for your permanent resident status.
3. Is my legal status in the country from which I am applying relevant?
An application for permanent resident Visa must be made to the Immigration
Office that serves the applicant’s Country of residence or the country where
the applicant is residing, if the applicant has been lawfully admitted to that
Country for a period of at least one year.
4. I have heard that Canadian Immigration Regulations have changed. How
will I be affected?
Immigration laws, regulations, and policies are constantly subject to change.
The effect of these changes will vary considerably from one applicant to
another, depending on the particular circumstances. While one candidate may
benefit from these changes, another may suffer a loss of points, or even
ELIGIBILITY & QUALIFICATIONS
5. Who qualifies for an Immigrant Visa?
Immigrant Visas are given to qualified skilled workers, business persons and to
close family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents.
6. Who can I include in my application for an Immigrant Visa?
Your spouse and any dependent children may be included in the application.
Children must be under the age of 19 years. If they are 19 and older, they must
not have had an interruption of more than 12 months in their schooling. Your
accompanying dependents will be subject to medical and security clearance
requirements. Other family members, such as your parents, generally cannot be
included in the application but you may be able to sponsor them as part of the
family class after you land in Canada. Common-law spouses and same-sex partners
are not considered spouses for immigration purposes. They will be assessed
independently. Where the common-law spouse or same-sex partner does not qualify
as an independent immigrant, an Immigrant Visa may still be issued on
humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
7. Are there any special procedures for different provinces in Canada?
Certain provinces have been given the authority to select or nominate
candidates for immigration destined to their respective provinces.
Quebec has exclusive authority to select candidates who intend to reside in
that province. These applicants are subject to Quebec's selection criteria, in
addition to Federal medical and security clearance requirements. They must also
pay an additional fee for processing by a Quebec Delegation. Applicants who
qualify under the Federal selection requirements may not necessarily satisfy
Quebec's selection requirements, and vice versa.
To a lesser degree certain provinces presently each have the authority to
nominate immigration candidates for selection by Federal immigration
authorities. Even without such nomination you may reside in those provinces by
meeting Federal selection criteria.
8. Is it harder to qualify for immigration in provinces with distinct
The purpose of distinct selection and nomination systems is to satisfy the
specific immigration requirements of the particular regions of Canada. With
that in mind, if the province is looking for an immigrant with certain skills
and you possess them, it might be easier for you to immigrate to that province.
Otherwise, these provisions may be neutral or detrimental to your eligibility.
9. When can I sponsor my family members to come to Canada?
Your family members living in Canada and abroad may be included in your
application for permanent residence in Canada. This means that their
applications for permanent resident status will be processed at the same time
as yours. However, all your family members, both in Canada and abroad, must
pass medical and background checks, whether they are accompanying you or not.
You cannot acquire permanent resident status until your family members have
passed these checks. After all requirements have been met, you and your family
members in Canada will be invited to the Citizenship and Immigration Canada
office nearest your home to be given permanent resident status. An officer will
then issue immigrant visas to your family members living outside Canada who
were included on your application. Your family members can then come to Canada
and acquire confirmation of permanent residence on their arrival.