Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

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One of Canada’s provinces or territories can nominate you to settle and work in Canada as part of the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). If you choose immigration to Canada as a provincial nominee, you must first apply to the province where you wish to settle and complete its provincial nomination process. However, you can also apply for the Provincial Nominee Program as a means to extend your stay and continue to work in Canada. The province will consider your application based on the immigration needs of the specific province and your genuine intention to settle there. The PNP is a popular route for those who wish to move from temporary to permanent status while retaining a job in Canada.

Disclaimer: The Moving2Canada Team are not registered immigration professionals. We always recommend verifying information provided with an immigration expert. Immigration rules are constantly evolving and we do our best to keep your informed. See Immigration Advice for a list of recommended experts.

Here are links to the relevant PNP pages on provincial websites:

After you have been nominated by a province or territory under Provincial Nominee Program, you have to make a separate application to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) for permanent residence. A CIC officer will then assess your application based on Canadian immigration regulations.

Provincial nominees are not assessed on the six selection factors of the Federal Skilled Worker Program.


Provincial Nominee Program FAQ

Thanks to Daniel Tinnelly for preparing this information for us. These questions deal specifically with applications within British Columbia, but the process tends to be very similar across the provinces. We hope these tips are valuable in assisting your immigration to Canada or allowing you to continue to work in Canada.

What do I need from my employer to process the application?

The information they need to provide is quite basic; a letter explaining what your job description is, an offer of employment (with a contract end date on it) and their BC business license.

How long does the application take? 

Once the permanent residency application has been sent, you won’t hear anything back from them for at least six months. Once you do they’ll send you a package containing some stickers with a barcode on them. These are used for all correspondance with the department. When this is received they have begun processing your application. Usually within two months of receiving this you will be asked to go for your medical. You are given 90 days to complete this. This usually costs between $200 and $250. A Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) is then requested, which comes to $490. Once this has cleared they will request your passport from you. This is usually a further two months down the line. You will be without your passport for up to four weeks, so make sure you don’t have any international trips planned. Your passport is returned with a form that you will need to present to the border official. It takes up to six weeks to get your PR card in the post.

What do I need to bring to the border to get my visa renewed? 

Bring the letter of acceptance that you receive from the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) office and your letter from your employer with your offer of employment. It depends on the border guard that you get, but you can get a visa for one, two or three years. This will cost $150. A one-year visa should be enough to see you through to the end of the application process, but if it’s not you can always have it renewed by calling the number on the back of the visa. This will cost you a further $150, so it’s always better to ask for a two-year visa.

Do I need my police certs when subitting the application?

It says on the website you do, but in actual fact you don’t. It can take months to get the police certs if you have lived in many countries — especially Australia, where they require your finger prints. Just make a note on the checklist that you need to send indicating that you are waiting on them to arrive and will submit them at a later stage. Once you receive your barcode stickers you can send them in. Don’t send them in before this or they may lose them as your case file will not have been set up. Remember, the quicker you get your application in, the quicker you get it processed.

Can I change jobs after submitting my permanent residency?

Yes. You will need to resubmit the employer’s information (letter with job description, offer of employment and BC business licence) to the Provincial Nominee Program office but not to the Permanent Residency office (Buffalo, London, Paris, etc). It is relatively easy to complete this process yourself without the need to employ an immigration lawyer, which can be very costly.

How much does it cost to apply? 

The full process costs $550 for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), $550 (including the employer’s portion) for the PR application, $200 – $250 for the medical and $490 for the Right of Permanent Residency Fee. A total of $1790 – $1840, plus the cost of your interim visas ($150 each).

My working holiday IEC visa runs out soon and I havent heard back from my application. What do I do?

You need to change your status with Immigration Canada to visitor prior to your work permit expiring. You must do so, as you are changing from temporary status to permanent status and there is no “implied status”. Not changing your status can affect your application to stay in Canada. Once you have changed status, you are no longer eligible to work in Canada and should not attempt to do so as your employer will suffer huge fines. Once accepted, you do have implied status in Canada.


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