Federal Skilled Worker application changes

Last November 28, 2008, the minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Canada, Minister Jason Kenney, laid out the new processing system of Federal Skilled Worker application (Permanent Residents Application).

Under this new processing system, all applications filed since February 27, 2008 will be subjected to this process. Four months after the new instruction was sent out, this category of Canadian Immigration processing has remained strong, despite the more strict and stringent requirements.

What this changes are and a review on the requirements are as follows:

The Action Plan for Faster Immigration was created to reduce Federal Skilled Worker application processing times to 6 to 12 months. The new requirements and processes apply only to applications submitted on or after February 27, 2008. All those submitted prior to then will are processed based on previous assessment criteria and processing times.

Under the New Immigration Minister’s instructions, Canadian Immigration Visa Officers reviewing Federal Skilled Worker applications are to process applications from three types of candidates.

Applicants must either:

1. Have at least one year of continuous full-time or equivalent paid work experience in the past 10 years in one of the 38 qualifying occupations, which have been identified as the most in-demand occupations in Canada at this time; or

2. Have been living in Canada with legal status as a Temporary Foreign Worker or an international student for at least one year; or

3. Qualify for Arranged Employment with a full-time permanent job offer from a Canadian employer.

Each type of applicant has its own application submission process:

1. Applicants with Arranged Employment are to submit their applications directly to the Canadian immigration visa office responsible for the applicant’s country of nationality or residence (if the applicant has been legally residing in that country for at least one year).

2. Applications made by Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW - OFW) or International Student currently residing in Canada, who have been legally residing Canada for at least one year, are to be submitted to the Canadian immigration visa office in Buffalo, New York, or the visa office serving the applicant’s country of nationality.

3. All other Federal Skilled Worker applications, with work experience in the 38 occupations are to be submitted to the Centralized Intake Office (CIO) in Nova Scotia. These applicants will submit forms and certain basic documents to the CIO, which will forward applicants who meet the basic work experience requirements to the appropriate Canadian immigration visa office abroad. At that time, the CIO will notify qualified applicants that they must submit their complete application to the visa office abroad in a 120 day period. Those who do not qualify based on the CIO review of work experience qualifications will have their applications returned and their processing fees refunded.

These changes do not affect the requirements or the processing methods of any other category of Canadian immigration.

Ministerial instructions are designed to reflect the needs of the Canadian economy and Canadian society. As economic conditions change, requirements may be adjusted.

More and more applications are being sent to the responsible Visa offices, if you are thinking of applying and you are qualified for Federal Skilled Worker application now is your chance. You should apply now, otherwise it may be too late.


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