Canadian Permanent Residency Programs

Canada offers many immigration categories or programs for people seeking permanent residence in Canada. See below for an outline of the Canadian permanent residency categories. It is not always easy to choose the best program for a person. Different programs have different requirements, and have different processing time frames.  To make the right decision one must take into account a number of factors particular to the applicant. People who are interested in applying for Canadian permanent residence should contact an experienced counsel in order to achieve their goal in the fastest, easiest way possible.


Major Canadian permanent residence categories

Independent / Skilled Worker: If you are a skilled worker and or a professional who wants to live and work in Canada, consider this category first.
Canadian Experience Class: If you have recently worked and/or studied in Canada, you may be eligible under this category.
Business Immigration: This category is for investors, entrepreneurs and self-employed people who have some business management experience or who want to start a business in Canada.
Family Class: A Canadian Permanent Resident or citizen may sponsor a family member including your husband or wife, common-law spouse, dependent child, parent, grandparent, and more. Consider this category if you have a Canadian family member who is willing to sponsor your permanent residence application.
Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP): Provincial Nominee Programs supplement the federal programs in order to facilitate immigrants come to and settle down in specific provinces.  Almost every provinces and territories have their own nominee programs.  Applicants who know which province they will live should consider the programs offered by the specific province or territory.

In addition to the above programs, a person in Canada may also seek permanent residence through the  Humanitarian & Compassionate application, temporary resident permit holder application, and refugee determination.

Additional Requirements for Permanent Residence

All applicants must pass medical, criminal and security checks before issuing a permanent resident visa or being granted a permanent resident status. In almost all cases one must also possess a valid passport or travel document.

If an applicant is issued a permanent resident visa, they will acquire Canadian permanent residence upon entry into Canada with the visa. For this most applicants within Canada will need to leave and enter Canada in order to obtain the permanent resident status. In certain situations, however, applicants in Canada may acquire permanent resident status without having to live the country.


After obtaining Canadian permanent residency

After a person is granted permanent residency status, they will be issued a Canadian Permanent Resident Card (PR Card). To maintain Canadian permanent residency, one is normally required to be  present in Canada for 720 days in any 5-year period. However, there are some exceptions to this residency obligation.

A person who has been resident in Canada for 3 years as a permanent resident may apply for Canadian citizenship. However, time spent in Canada as temporary student or worker may be counted toward the 3-year requirement, and under some circumstances one may apply for citizenship even if they do not accumulate 3 years of residence in Canada.


Read more on:

Maintaining Permanent Resident Status

Canadian Citizenship Application

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