Latest updates

CIC announces changes to Canadian Experience Class
  • Canada
  • 24 January 2014

The citizenship and immigration minister recently announced significant changes to the Canadian Experience Class (CEC). Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) will now impose a total annual cap on the number of new CEC applications that it accepts and will introduce limits on the number of applications that may be accepted in certain occupations. In addition, CIC will change when language ability is assessed.

Start-Up Visa Programme to include business incubator stream
  • Canada
  • 06 December 2013

When it was established in March 2013 the Start-Up Visa Programme initially included a venture capital stream and an angel investor stream. However, the programme has now been expanded to include business incubators. Under the business incubator stream, Citizenship and Immigration Canada will designate eligible business incubator programmes in consultation with the Canadian Association of Business Incubation.

Government introduces 10-year biometric passports
  • Canada
  • 30 August 2013

The citizenship, immigration and multiculturalism minister recently announced that 10-year e-passports, also known as biometric passports, will now be available to Canadian citizens. The e-passport contains new security features designed to make the passport tamper-proof. More than 100 countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom and France, already issue e-passports to their citizens.

New Federal Skilled Worker Programme open for business
  • Canada
  • 05 July 2013

The new Federal Skilled Worker Programme has now begun accepting applications. This follows a "temporary pause" imposed on the acceptance of new applications by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to allow CIC to manage inventory pressures and to align future intake with the implementation of proposed regulatory changes to the Federal Skilled Worker Class.

CIC announces parent and grandparent programme to reopen in 2014
  • Canada
  • 28 June 2013

Citizenship and Immigration Canada recently announced that the Parent and Grandparent Programme for Permanent Residence based on family sponsorship will reopen on January 2 2014 and new applications for sponsorship will be accepted. The government has set out several important changes to the programme through the proposed amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations.

CIC announces proposed changes to 'dependent children' definition
  • Canada
  • 14 June 2013

Citizenship and Immigration Canada has announced proposed regulatory amendments that will narrow the definition of 'dependent child' by reducing the age limit to children under the age of 19 and removing the exception for full-time students. Once implemented, this proposed change will adversely affect the dependent children of all prospective immigrants to Canada.

CIC launches new Start-Up Business Class
  • Canada
  • 10 May 2013

The minister of citizenship, immigration and multiculturalism has announced that Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) will launch its Start-Up Visa Programme to recruit innovative immigrant entrepreneurs to create new jobs and spur economic growth. To this end CIC has published the Ministerial Instructions in the Canada Gazette, thus formally establishing the new Start-Up Business Class.

CIC announces Start-Up Visa Programme
  • Canada
  • 08 March 2013

Citizenship and Immigration Canada is to launch the Start-Up Visa Programme to recruit innovative immigrant entrepreneurs who will create new jobs and spur economic growth. Foreign entrepreneurs seeking permanent residence under the programme will require the support of a Canadian angel investor group, venture capital fund or business incubator before they can apply.

Federal Skilled Trades Programme begins accepting applications
  • Canada
  • 01 March 2013

Citizenship and Immigration Canada has begun accepting applications under the Federal Skilled Trades Programme. Eligible occupations are split into two groups: Group A includes 17 jobs with a moderate labour market need, while Group B includes 26 in-demand jobs. In addition to falling under one of the listed occupations, applicants must satisfy four minimum requirements.

Canada to begin collecting biometric data from certain foreign nationals
  • Canada
  • 01 February 2013

Citizenship and Immigration Canada recently published proposed regulations that will authorise the collection and use of biometric data from certain foreign nationals who apply for a temporary resident visa, study permit or work permit. Biometrics is the measurement of an individual's unique physical identifiers, such as fingerprints and facial image, through which an applicant's identity can be established.

Canada and United States sign visa and immigration information-sharing agreement
  • Canada
  • 25 January 2013

Canada and the United States have signed the US-Canada Visa and Immigration Information-Sharing Agreement. Both countries have committed to share immigration information to improve border efficiency and security by establishing and verifying the identity of foreign nationals and identifying those who are inadmissible.

New language rules for citizenship applicants announced
  • Canada
  • 09 November 2012

The minister of citizenship, immigration and multiculturalism has announced that citizenship applicants must now provide upfront objective evidence of their language ability at the time of their citizenship application. Under the new rules, applicants are required to submit objective evidence that they have achieved the Canadian Language Benchmark Level 4, in speaking and listening, when they file their application.

CIC plans overhaul of Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations
  • Canada
  • 05 October 2012

Following a temporary pause in the acceptance of new Federal Skilled Worker Class applications, Citizenship and Immigration Canada has published proposed regulatory amendments in the Canada Gazette which would significantly alter the Federal Skilled Worker Class, create a new Federal Skilled Trades Class and liberalise the Canadian Experience Class.

Employment termination and maintenance of lawful status
  • Canada
  • 28 September 2012

Foreign nationals who hold work permits in Canada sometimes wonder what will happen to their immigration status if they quit their jobs or are terminated by their Canadian employers. Surprisingly, the termination of a foreign national's employment does not automatically invalidate his or her work permit.

CIC updates Foreign Worker Manual provisions relating to intra-company transferees
  • Canada
  • 10 August 2012

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) recently updated its Foreign Worker Manual, which provides guidance to CIC and Canada Border Services Agency officers who adjudicate work permit applications. The updated version includes revisions to sections that describe the C12 and North American Free Trade Agreement intra-company transferee exemptions from the labour market opinion requirement.

Pause on federal skilled and federal immigrant investor worker applications
  • Canada
  • 03 August 2012

Citizenship and Immigration Canada recently published Operational Bulletin 438, which provides guidance on the recently issued ministerial instructions. The bulletin states that a temporary pause has been placed on new applications filed under the Federal Skilled Worker Programme, excluding applications received under the PhD eligibility stream and those with a qualifying offer of arranged employment.

HRSDC announces accelerated labour market opinion initiative
  • Canada
  • 15 June 2012

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada has implemented its new accelerated labour market opinion (A-LMO) initiative. The A-LMO initiative is intended to expedite the regular labour market opinion process for employers with an established track record of compliance.

New wage structure for labour market opinion applications
  • Canada
  • 08 June 2012

The minister of human resources and skills development has announced that improvements will be made to the Temporary Foreign Worker Programme. In connection with this announcement, Human Resource and Skills Development Canada has adopted a new wage structure that will be applicable to labour market opinion and accelerated labour market opinion applications.

Five-year waiting period introduced for spouses and partners
  • Canada
  • 01 June 2012

The government has announced a regulatory change that requires sponsored spouses or common-law partners to wait five years from the day when they are granted permanent residence status in Canada before they can sponsor a new spouse or partner. The objective of this change is to discourage immigration fraud in spouse or common-law partner family class cases.

Conditional permanent residence proposal to discourage marriage fraud
  • Canada
  • 25 May 2012

The minister of citizenship, immigration and multiculturalism has announced additional measures to discourage marriage fraud. Under the new proposal, conditional permanent resident status would apply to all spouses in relationships of two years or less who have no children with their sponsor at the time of the sponsorship application.