Post Graduate Work Permit

Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) Holders, LMIA’s and PNP

One of the most common types of cases that everyone is asking about is the PGWP program and how people with this type of permit can obtain Permanent Resident (PR) status in Canada. One of the biggest concerns for potential applicants is the fact that they were exempt from obtaining a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) at the time that they were getting their PGWP and now they are being told that it is crucial to obtaining Permanent Resident status in Canada. This is not necessarily true.

While having an LMIA definitely gives you a really big boost in securing the points necessary through the Express Entry system to help you get qualified for an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for PR, it does not mean that if you do not have one you will not get an ITA. The first round of ITA’s that were extended to applicants required that you have a minimum score of at least 886 points however that number has since dropped to 453 points as per the most recent round of ITA’s that were extended on April 17th, 2015. This means that even if you did not have an occupation that was supported by an LMIA you may still have qualified. For a complete list of all the previous rounds of qualifications and the corresponding points for each, click here.

Another great way to overcome the need for a LMIA, is the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP) that are available through each province. By securing a nomination certificate from a province in Canada, you will be able to secure 600 points right off the bat and it will definitely put you in the top candidates in the Express Entry pool. Depending on if you have a job offer, the program of study you completed, how long ago you completed it and the highest level of education in Canada that you have obtained, you may qualify to apply under a PNP program and get a nomination from a provincial government.

A couple of final tips for any of you that do not have a LMIA and wish to settle in Canada permanently are:

1)  If you are currently in a spousal, common law partner or conjugal partner relationship in Canada, and your partner is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, he or she may be eligible to sponsor you as an inland applicant. This way you can obtain PR status in Canada without having to go through the skilled worker categories in Canada.

2)  If your spouse, common law or conjugal partner is currently in Canada legally under a work or study permit, you may entitled to get a work permit as well. The work permit you receive will be valid for the same time that your spouse or partner is working or studying in Canada.

When it comes to immigration matters and your status in Canada, it is important to always seek competent legal advice so that you can get all the information that you need to make an informed decision. Our Immigration Consultant Toronto experts can provide you with a consultation, answer any questions that you have and give you all the information you need about your immigration matters. Click here to contact us today and schedule your consultation.