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Express Entry

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Express Entry is the most popular pathway for skilled immigrants seeking a new life in Canada. The Express Entry (EE) organizes and processes applications for people who wish to immigrate to Canada and acquire Canadian permanent residence.Express Entry is not an immigration by itself, rather its an online system which manages applications sent to the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) department. The system manages three Canadian immigration programs:

Some Provincial Nominee Programs have Express Entry component. If a candidate receives a nomination from a provincial authority, the respective approval can be included in their Express Entry submission.

Candidates who meet the eligibility criteria of one of the federal immigration programs under the Canadian Express Entry system can submit an online profile and be included in the Express Entry pool. Candidate profiles are ranked against each other according to a point based system called Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). The candidates with the highest ranking scores in the Express Entry draw will be considered for an Invitation to Apply for Permanent Residence. 

How to Apply for Express Entry?

If a foreign national wants to apply for immigration through Express Entry system, the individual is required to submit their profile on the website of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) or speak to one of our Canadian Immigration Lawyers for assistance. An individual has only 90 days to complete the online profile and upload required documents. Some of the documents included in the online profile include language test results, educational credential assessment report and passport or travel document. 

After submission of an online profile, the candidate can receive an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence from IRCC, if the CRS points are high. The candidate will have 60 days to complete and submit the Application for Permanent Residence and pay the required fees within the deadline. Some additional documents may be required such as results of  medical exam, police clearance certificate, reference letters and additional identity documents.

Express Entry Processing Time

Applications for Canadian permanent residency through Express Entry programs can take at least six months. The processing time is measured from the day you submit a complete permanent residency application. An Express Entry profile will remain active in the pool for 12 months if no invitation to apply was issued by the government. If a candidate does not receive an ITA after 12 months, then you can re-submit your profile and remain in the pool if your still interested in moving to Canada. 

Who is Eligible for Canada Express Entry?

Generally, the ideal candidates for Canadian Express Entry must meet the following requirements:

  • Be under 30 years old
  • Hold at least two Bachelor’s degrees or a Master’s degree
  • Have a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level seven or higher
  • Have at least one year, in the last 10 years of continuous full time or equivalent part time work experience in a skilled occupation. 

These are the minimum requirements but not all requirements for applying for Canadian Express Entry. As candidates will be ranked according to their CRS score, meeting only the minimum requirements is not a guarantee that you will receive an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence.

How much does Express Entry cost?

The submission of an Express Entry (EE) profile to the government is free of charge. Candidates incur costs when they have received an invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence. Also, candidates may need to pay additional government processing fee, that is provincial immigration fee if they apply through a PNP.

The cost of Canadian immigration through Express Entry is about $2500 CAD for a single applicant or about $5000 CAD for a couple. The following fees have been effective since April 30, 2022.

Application Cost (CAD)
Processing fee per adult$850
Right of Permanent Residency fee per adult$515
A dependant child per cost$230
Biometrics per person$85
Language test (average cost)$300
Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) - average cost$200
Medical Examination fee per adult - average cost$450
Medical Examination fee per child - average cost$250
Police Clearance Certificates - per country$100

Note: Unless a candidate is applying for Canadian Experience Class or has a valid arranged job offer, the candidate will need to provide a proof of settlement funds for the stay in Canada.  

Do i need a Job offer for Express Entry?

No, you don’t need a Canadian job offer for Express Entry. However, having an eligible Canadian job offer under Express Entry can add up to 200 points to your CRS score. 

How are Express Entry points calculated?

Canada Express Entry Program uses Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) to rank candidates entering the Express Entry Pool. So when people refer to Express Entry Points they are simply inquiring about CRS Score. The following are the factors used to calculate your Express Entry Points: 

  • Age
  • Education Level
  • Language Proficiency
  • Foreign and Canadian Work Experience
  • Other Factors such as spouse and connections to Canada

Why is my Express Entry score zero?

If a candidates Express Entry score is zero, it simply means  the eligibility requirements have not been met by the candidate. 

Common Reasons for Express Entry Refusal

A candidates Express Entry profile can be refused right after the submission or months after the profile has been in the pool. An application may be refused for many reasons such as:

  • No meeting the minimum requirements of the program they applied for (FSW, FSW, CEC or PNP)
  • Errors within the submission
  • Failure to optimize points within the regulations
  • Failure to understand what the government is looking for.
  • The applicant of family member is Inadmissible to Canada.

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