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The Hack

A Christmas gift from Canada Immigration:

new changes to Express Entry

Directorio Hispano

Diciembre, 2016.- The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, now the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, has just given a gift to students who had come to Canada to study, had completed their degrees in Canada and then had worked diligently for one year or longer on post graduate work permits. These students had qualified for permanent residency under the Canada Experience Class and were routinely landed, until Express Entry came into being.

With Express Entry came the “pool selection” process, which meant that the student no longer qualified, as they could not meet the initial point requirement to be pulled from the famous “pool.” Express Entry introduced a process by which a separate, distinct point allocation criteria were first applied to an applicant. These points were divided among four categories, including Core Human Capital factors, Spousal, Skill Transferability, and then additional factors which included whether the applicant was working under a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) work permit or a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) work permit. Any applicant would enter via an online application process, their background information and based on this information, points would be allocated over those four broad areas. Every so often, officials from Canada Immigration, now IRCC, would dip into the pool of candidates and choose those with the most points. The total number of points possible to accumulate is 1200. Those with LMIA or PNP work permits, were allocated 600 points, right off the start. That meant that if you did not have either of these gems, your chances of being selected form the pool were very small. This cut out most of the post graduate work permit holders who could otherwise qualify under the Canada Experience Class; they simply did not have enough points.

The new amendments to the Express Entry came into effect November 19, 2016. Changes include awarding points for job offers to eligible candidates already in Canada on Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exempt work permits, and to international students who completed their studies in Canada. In addition, more time will be allocated to candidates to submit an application for permanent residence once an invitation to apply is received.

Before the changes, the 600 points were awarded for a person with an LMIA work permit. After the amendment, only 50 points will be awarded for a person with an LMIA, unless their job falls within the category of senior management, such as the CEO of a company or equivalent high rank, then 200 points are awarded. In reducing the points for an LMIA job, Express Entry becomes more competitive for post graduate non LMIA permit holders.

Another important change is in the point allocation for education. Under the previous system, no additional benefit is awarded specifically to former international students who have received an education in Canada. Wirth the changes, points will be awarded for study in Canada above high school.

The Express Entry will allocate 15 points for a one- or two-year diploma or certificate and 30 points for a degree, diploma or certificate of three years or longer including a master’s, professional or doctoral degree.

With these changes, more former international students will be able to transition to permanent residence using the Express Entry system.

A Christmas possible gift for those students who thought they had been left out in the cold.