Individuals and families around the world can immigrate to Canada within just a few months through the Express Entry immigration selection system. Express Entry, first introduced in 2015, has become the main driver of economic immigration to Canada and one of the most popular immigration systems globally.
What is Express Entry Canada?
Express Entry is system used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), which manages and processes applications received through Canada’s federal economic immigration programs. Applications are received from eligible candidates who have been invited to apply to immigrate to Canada based on their human capital factors, skills, experience, and other factors.
Under Express Entry, individuals and families wishing to settle in Canada can become new permanent residents within just a few months.
How Express Entry works:
1. Potential applicants will need to be eligible under one of the following federal economic immigration programs.
- The Federal Skilled Worker Class (FSWC);
- The Canadian Experience Class (CEC); or
- The Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC).
A portion of the Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) are streamlined through Express Entry, but candidates must be eligible under one of the three federal programs in order to enter the Express Entry pool.
2. Eligible individuals may submit an Expression of Interest (EOI). This EOI will be assessed and issued a ranking score.
The ranking score for Express Entry is based on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). Under the CRS, candidates are assigned is a score out of 1,200 used to rank federal economic candidates for immigration to Canada. Candidates can improve their their rank, and thereby increase their chances of receiving an Invitation to Apply (ITA), by taking steps to improve their CRS score.
The CRS is not a selection criteria (like that of the one used for the Federal Skilled Worker Class). It is a ranking system for candidates who are eligible under the FSWC, CEC, or FSTC.
The SCRS score is used as a cut-off point in Express Entry draws. It is designed to project a candidate’s likelihood of being economically successful in Canada. It ranks different candidates based on their career and educational history, language skills, and whether they have already received a qualifying job offer or provincial nomination in Canada, among other factors.
Those candidates with a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), or another qualifying job offer, are eligible for either 50 or 200 bonus points in the CRS. Provincial nominees can receive 6oo bonus points.
Qualifying job offers used to receive 600 points also, but this was amended in the Express Entry changes of November 2016.
3. Candidates without a job offer or a provincial nomination may then register in the Canada Job Bank, a free public resource used to help Canadian employers identify and select workers possessing the skills they require. This step used to be mandatory, but became voluntary as of June 2017.
4. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) conducts Express Entry draws at regular intervals (usually every two weeks). In these Express Entry draws, candidates above a certain rank are invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence. Invited candidates are given 90 days to submit an online application for permanent residence, including all supporting documentation. Visit this page for details of the latest Express Entry draw.
5. Candidates in the pool who have not yet been selected are able to improve their Express Entry profile and score. They can do this by submitting new and updated information. Examples include: increased language scores, educational credentials assessments, adding additional work experience, and/or obtaining a qualifying job offer or a provincial nomination.
- See our tips for improving your CRS score.