Where To Apply For Skilled Worker Applications

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Under section 11 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, an applicant has a right to apply a permanent resident application in two kinds of locations in the world. One is the place they have been admitted legally for at least one year. For example, if you are a student from Pakistan and studying in a 3-year program at the University of Waterloo, you can apply from Pakistan or through Buffalo, New York. If you’re an engineer from England, but not working or studying here, you can only apply through London, England. The other is where a person has a citizenship or permanent residency. If you are born in India, you have a right to apply for your permanent resident application to Canada in New Delhi, India.

Assuming that you are applying for a permanent resident application to Canada under the Federal Skilled Worker Class today from outside of Canada, you must be qualified to do so under the new Minister’s instruction. Since you do not have a work permit and are not selected for a specific provincial nominee program, your profession must be qualified among the listed 38 occupations. If you qualify for one of the 38 occupations, you need to prove that you have the qualifications and complete a 5-page application. Once that application is accepted, they may ask for further documentation. However, for most applications outside of Canada, visa posts only accept the simplified procedure – a short application without any supporting documentation. In order to get past the screening process via the Minister’s Instruction, all applicants must enclose supporting documents to prove that their occupation can be qualified. There is no specific instruction as to what “supporting” documentation they will accept or expect for this process, which has been temporarily named the “Simplified plus” process by some immigration lawyers. It is important to wait and see the clarification from CIC.

To help speed this process up for out-of-country applicants, they are going to create a processing centre in Sydney, Nova Scotia, which will process these initial applications and give them a file number. These applications will then go back to the visa centres abroad for final processing and gathering of medical information, etc. Unfortunately, this new centre is going to be built as a result of a ministerial instruction, but because Parliament has been prorogued, we are not sure when this new processing centre may be proceeded. Therefore, all applications which do not have a Labour Market Opinion based work permit have a long wait to get processed at the end. We won’t know how long we will have to wait for this new centre until after Parliament reconvenes. If you have such work permit, then your file may get processed in Buffalo, New York or wherever the visa post your citizenship allows without any further delay. Again, it is highly recommended to review your application to see if your qualifications can be matched, at this point, under other optimal application classes rather than the Federal Skilled Worker Class.


This information is taken from an interview from December 10, 2008 interview with Jennifer Roggemann, Immigration Lawyer with Jennifer Roggemann Law Office, a Kitchener Ontario Canada Immigration Law Firm. This article is provided as an information service only and should not be used as legal advice. Laws vary by jurisdiction so please consult with an appropriate legal professional if you are looking for help with a specific situation.