The Advantages Of Applying For Permanent Residence Status Through A Provincial Nominee Program As Opposed To Going Through The Federal Skilled Worker Program

There are a number of advantages to the provincial nominee program. The first advantage has to do with processing time. The provincial nominee programs have, in general, been much faster routes to obtaining permanent resident status than the federal skilled worker program.

The second major advantage is some people just would not qualify under the skilled worker program, whereas because the provincial nominee programs are all designed by different provinces, they can be very creative. Each province can have its own standards. The federal skilled worker category still takes more immigrants than any other category, but it tends to be fairly rigid in its point system. You get points for age, education, experience, language ability and so on. If you don’t get enough points then you are not going to be successful. Many of the provincial programs don’t have any point system at all, or some of them have a more flexible point system. People may not have fluent language ability, but they can speak fluently enough to contribute to the labour market in that province and meet the need for workers. They can be successful through that program and also get approved quickly.

Every province has its own system and some of them have similarities, but they are all slightly different in terms how they select people. In Alberta for instance, which is the one that I deal with more than anything else, the system is very much employer driven. The province of Alberta is looking to help employers in Alberta to find the skilled labour that they need to run their businesses effectively. If an employer identifies somebody who is working for them on a work permit as a worker they want to keep permanently, the province is generally going to go along with the employer. As soon as they establish that the employer is bona fide and appears to be acting in good faith, they are likely to take the employer’s word and look for ways to accept the worker. In this way, the provincial programs can be an advantage over a federal program.


If you, or someone you care about, is dealing with immigration law issues in the Calgary, Alberta Region, contact Sherritt Greene Barristers & Solicitors for a consultation.

This article is taken from a March 18, 2008 interview with Michael Greene an immigration lawyer with Sherritt Greene Barristers & Solicitors, a Calgary Immigration Law Firm. Note that laws vary from province to province. Please consult with a lawyer in your own area to be sure of the laws and specific issues in your own jurisdiction.