Frequently Asked Questions

How long should I live in Canada to be eligible to apply for the Canadian citizenship?

To become Canadian citizen, you must have resided in Canada for at least four years (1,460 days) in the past six years. You must also be physically present for at least 183 days during each of four calendar years that are fully or partially within the six years immediately before the date of application. Children under the age of 18 do not need to meet this requirement.

Do I need to submit proof of language to apply for the citizenship?

Yes. To become a citizen, you must show that you have adequate knowledge of English or French. If you are between 14 to 64 years old, you will have to send proof of your ability to speak and listen in English or French with your citizenship application.

What is Express Entry and how does it work?

Express Entry is a new way of managing applications in a number of existing economic immigration programs:

Provinces and territories will also be able to recruit candidates from the Express Entry pool for a portion of the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) in order to meet local labour market needs.

Through Express Entry, people who meet the criteria for one of these programs will be placed into a pool of candidates. The Government of Canada, provincial and territorial governments, and Canadian employers will be able to select people from this pool. Candidates with the highest scores in the pool will be issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence.

What does the Parent and Grandparent super visa means?

Parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens and permanent residents have a new option for visiting Canada. As of December 1, 2011, you may be eligible to apply for the Parent and Grandparent Super Visa and enjoy visiting your family in Canada for up to two years without the need to renew your status. You may request a multiple entry visa for up to ten years by requesting a multiple entry visa.

To apply for the Parent and Grandparent Super Visa, you must be the parent or grandparent of a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident of Canada. In addition to being found admissible to Canada, the parent or grandparent must also:

  • provide a written commitment of financial support from their child or grandchild in Canada who meets a minimum income threshold;
  • prove that they have bought Canadian medical insurance coverage for at least one year; and
  • complete an Immigration Medical Examination.

Can I apply for the Federal Skilled Worker program?

As of July 1, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)has temporarily stopped accepting applications for the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP). However, this pause does not apply to those with a qualifying job offer or applying under the PhD stream. The FSWP is currently under review and proposed changes should come into force in 2013.

What does the new conditional permanent residence regulations for spouse and partners means?

Effective October 25, 2012, sponsored spouses or partners must live together in a legitimate relationship with their sponsor for two years from the day they receive permanent residence status in Canada. The status of the sponsored spouse or partner may be revoked if they do not remain in the relationship.

Which family members may come with me to Canada when I immigrate?

The family members who can come with you to Canada when you immigrate include:

  • your spouse or common-law partner
  • your dependent child,
  • your spouse or common-law partner's dependent child, and
  • a dependent child of a dependent child.

Your parents, grandparents and other family members cannot come to Canada with you. However, you may be able to apply to sponsor them to come to Canada after you immigrate here.

How can I extend my stay as a visitor, worker or student?

If you want to extend your stay in Canada, you should apply at least 30 days before your status expires.

If you want to extend your stay in Canada, you should apply at least 30 days before your status expires.

If your PR card is lost, stolen or destroyed, while you are in Canada, you should report the loss or theft. To replace your PR Card, you need to apply for a replacement PR Card. If your PR Card is lost or stolen while you are outside of Canada, please report the loss or theft to the nearest Canadian visa office. In order to return to Canada, you will need to apply for a Travel Document (Permanent Resident Abroad). You can apply to replace your PR Card upon your return to Canada.

What does the Government of Canada consider to be a common-law relationship?

You may apply to sponsor a common-law partner, of the opposite sex or the same sex. If so, you have to prove you have been living with your partner for at least 12 consecutive months in a relationship like a marriage.That means living together for one year without any long periods where you did not see each other. Either partner may have left the home for work or business travel, family obligations, and so on. However, that separation must have been temporary and short.A common-law relationship ends when at least one partner does not intend to continue it.

Can my spouse or common-law partner work in Canada?

Your spouse or common-law partner may be able to apply for an "open" work permit—allowing him or her to accept any job with any employer—if you meet one of these conditions:

  • you are
    • allowed to work in Canada for at least six months
    • doing work in Canada that meets a minimum skill level (usually work that requires at least a college diploma) and
    • doing a job listed in Skill Level 0, A or B in the National Occupational Classification, or on a list of eligible occupations in participating provinces.

If your spouse or common-law partner gets an open work permit, it is normally valid for the same period as yours.

What is a Labour Market Impact Assessment?

A LMIA is a document that an employer in Canada must usually get from Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) before hiring a foreign worker. A positive LMIA will show that there is a need for a foreign worker to fill the job and that no Canadian worker can do the job.

How can I help a family member or friend apply to visit Canada?

You can help your friend or family member by writing a letter of invitation. It should explain how you will help the person. For example, you may offer to pay for plane tickets or accommodation.

What does the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) means?

The British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) accelerates the Permanent Resident application process for skilled and/or experienced workers, experienced business persons and their family members who want to settle in BC permanently.

The business component of the BC PNP offers accelerated immigration for investment-ready and qualified entrepreneurs ready to invest and settle in BC, and become permanent residents of Canada. The objectives of the BC PNP Business Immigration categories are to encourage economic development, promote job creation and maintain existing jobs in BC.

What are the requirements to hire a live-in caregiver?

In order to hire a foreign live-in caregiver, you must:

  • have made a sufficient effort to first fill your position with a Canadian, a permanent resident or a foreign worker already in Canada;
  • have sufficient income to pay a live-in caregiver;
  • provide acceptable accommodation in your home;
  • make a job offer that has primary caregiving duties for a child or an elderly or disabled person; and
  • obtain a Labour Market Opinion (LMO) with the employment contract from Human Resources and Skills Development Canada/Service Canada (HRSDC/SC).

Once the LMO is approved, the caregiver whom you have selected can apply for a work permit. In addition, they must provide a contract which all parties have signed; they must have a good knowledge of English or French; and they must meet minimum education requirements.

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