Canadian Immigration Questions and Answers with Attorney David Cohen
Every month, Attorney David Cohen will answer a few general Canadian immigration questions submitted by our readers. These questions cover immigration programs, eligibility, processing, language requirements, investing in Canada, landing, admissibility, studying in Canada, working in Canada, and much more.
1. I have a bachelor’s degree in chemistry that I obtained in 2008 but I only started working in chemistry two years ago. My previous work was as a head secretary at a high school for six years. Can I gain Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points for both sets of work experience, or just for my work in chemistry?
Your work experience does not have to be related to your field of studies to be awarded CRS points. However, there are a number of conditions regarding your work experience that does have to be met. For example, as a candidate in the Federal Skilled Worker Class, your work experience must be rated as skilled under the National Occupation Classification (NOC).
2. If my application for permanent residence was submitted before Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada announced the revised settlement funds requirements, could my application be refused because it reflects the old requirement, but not the new?
When an applicant submits their electronic application for permanent residence (e-APR) to Canada’s immigration authorities, the application is assessed according to the regulations in effect at the time of their e-APR submission. New requirements if introduced after a file is submitted, should not affect your application. However, if your family circumstances change after you submit your application — you have a baby, for example — this change has to be declared and you will have to prove that you have the required amount of settlement funds for your family’s size.
3. I’m an independent professional from a European Union member state and when I wanted to apply for a work permit last year, I was told I needed a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) in order to have the work permit approved. My employer was unwilling to do this at the time so I was wondering if there was any way to get around this requirement.
Yes, through the Canada – European Union (EU) Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, or CETA, which took effect on September 21, 2017. According to this international agreement, citizens of EU member states who are independent professionals and have a Canadian job offer in an occupation covered under the CETA can apply for the work permit without going through the LMIA process. However, this exemption is only possible for the first 12 months of any given employment contract. If you would like to work beyond this, then the employer would have to go through the LMIA process.