Being the second-largest landmass in the world, Canada’s population has recently passed the 37.5 million mark only. Of course, this falls short of other large countries such as Russia with 144 million, the US with 326 million, China with 1.4 billion, India with 1.3 billion, and Brazil with 210 million. Consequently Canada is eager to bring in…

Being the second-largest landmass in the world, Canada’s population has recently passed the 37.5 million mark only. Of course, this falls short of other large countries such as Russia with 144 million, the US with 326 million, China with 1.4 billion, India with 1.3 billion, and Brazil with 210 million. Consequently

Canada is eager to bring in new immigrants as much as possible. For instance, the Canadian Government has decided to accept up to 360,000 immigrants in 2020.

The Canadian immigration law is, known as IRPA (The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act), lays out the Canadian immigration principals. According to section 12 of the IRPA, immigration to Canada falls into three categories:

  • Family Reunification
  • Economic Immigrants
  • Refugees

Let’s have a quick look at these options.

Canada Immigration 2020 through family reunification

A person who holds Permanent Residency (PR) or Citizenship of Canada may sponsor their spouse, children, parents, grandparents, or other family members to become permanent residents of Canada under various family sponsorship programs. Nonetheless, different criteria may apply to each of these groups. For more information, you may read the below:

Sponsoring other family members

Family sponsorship rarely covers anyone other than the above-mentioned family members. However, Canadians could sponsor other family members to Canada under rare circumstances. For example, under paragraph 117(1)(f) of the IRPR (the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations), Canadians may sponsor their minor siblings who have lost both their parents.

Additionally, paragraph 117(1)(g) describes the possibility of adopting minor children in Canada. Read the following article for more information:

Both the sponsor and the applicant need to meet specific criteria to receive the seal of approval from the immigration authorities. For example, read the following article:

Alternatives for family sponsorship

In some situations, when the sponsor or their family members do not fully qualify for immigration, an immigration officer could approve the application under the Humanitarian and Compassionate Considerations (H&C). Of course, in such cases, the officers consider the following:

  • a child’s emotional, social, cultural and physical welfare
  • the hardship imposed to the families
  • circumstances in their home country
  • their ties to Canada
  • their establishment in Canada
  • other factors that could affect an officer’s decision.

Section 25 of IRPA introduces H&C applications. Additionally, some critical court cases such as Kanthasamy v. Canada affect the way officers review H&C requests. Read the following article for more information:

Provinces and family reunification

Sometimes Canadian provinces introduce special family reunification opportunities for residents of their province. Of course, you need to visit the relevant websites or consult with a professional for more information.

Canada Immigration 2020 for the economic class

Applicantsو who immigrate through the economic classes, are mainly skilled workers, business owners, or senior managers with management experience and investment capabilities. In fact, the majority of immigrants to Canada fall under this group. We could divide economic immigration into three main groups:

  • Federal  – These immigrants may settle in any province or territory of Canada other than Quebec.
  • Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) – The applicants immigrate to a specific province of Canada other than Quebec
  • Quebec – The province of Quebec holds an exclusive agreement with the federal government, also known as the Quebec Accord, in which the province has the sole responsibility of its immigration programs.

Canada Immigration 2020 under the Federal Programs

The following programs are available through federal immigration in 2019:

  • Express Entry or EE – This system which has been in effect since 2015, includes three classes of immigration programs, namely:
  • Self-Employed program – This program covers two specific groups, namely:
    • Athletics – Athletes and people active in sports (coaches, referees, sports managers, etc.)
    • Cultural Activities – Artists and people engaged in artistic and cultural fields (authors, musicians, filmmakers, screenwriters, artistic painters, singers, etc.)
  • Start-up Visa – This program is designed for innovative immigrants
  • Home Child Care Provider Pilot or Home Support Worker Pilot – This process is specific to applicants who were present and worked in Canada as caregivers.
  • Atlantic Immigration Pilot – This program mainly targets people who have job offers from an employer in one of the Atlantic provinces, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot – If you have a job offer from an employer in some rural regions of Canada, you may immigrate to Canada. Of course, this is a pilot program that commences in 2020.
  • Agri-Food Immigration Pilot – Some foreign workers in the agri-food industry may immigrate to Canada in 2020 under this pilot program.

Canada immigration 2020 under the PNP and Quebec Programs

Canada has ten provinces and three territories. Except for Nunavut, every province and territory in Canada offers some immigration opportunities. In fact, the Canadian Constitution Act 1867 enables provinces to manage immigration to their provinces as long as it is not against the decisions of the Federal Government. For an introduction to PNP programs, visit the following link:

Canada immigration 2020 as a refugee

Some people are displaced from their home countries and could be resettled to Canada as Convention refugees. When these people land in Canada, they become permanent residents of Canada.  However, some people come to Canada and file for asylum at a port of entry or inside Canada. Most of these people attend a hearing at the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada. Of course, if they succeed, they may eventually become permanent residents of Canada. Read the following articles for more information:

Other Ways to Move to Canada

You may enter or live in Canada for a few days to several months under the following options

These temporary options do not necessarily result in permanent residency, but they could help. For instance, if a person works in Canada for at least one year, they may be able to apply for immigration under the Canadian Experience Class. Also, if a person finishes post-secondary level studies (i.e. Masters Degree or Ph.D.) in Ontario, they could apply for permanent residence under the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program.

If you intend to immigrate to Canada, consider the following charges:

  • Processing fee – You need to pay the processing fee to the federal or provincial governments of Canada to ask them to review your application package. The amount they charge could vary from less than $100 (Canadian funds) to thousands of dollars.
  • Consultation and representation fee – If you hire an immigration consultant or an immigration lawyer to help you with the application process, you need to pay their professional fees, which are usually a few hundred to a few thousand dollars of Canada. While consultants or lawyers do not speed up your process, they could prevent drastic mistakes that could result in misrepresentation or other issues with the application. However, make sure to select a professional and knowledgeable practitioner. An incompetent practitioner could become part of the problem instead of the solution.
  • Right of Permanent Residence Fee (RPRF) – We also know this fee as the landing fee. The cost is currently $490 per person and applies to the principal applicant and their spouse (some exceptions apply).
  • Biometrics fee – You need to give biometrics for the purpose of immigration to Canada. The current cost of biometrics is $85 per person and a maximum of $170 per family.
  • Medial examination – All family members need to go through a medical examination. A panel physician authorized by IRCC will conduct the examination. Panel physicians charge you for their services. The amount you need to pay depends on your country and the complexity of your medical issues.
  • Preparation and translation of documents – You need to prepare several documents and translate them into English or French languages.
  • Other expenses – Sometimes, you need to conduct exploratory visits to Canada. You may also need to pay a good faith deposit to certain provinces. Consider other unexpected expenses such as traveling to another country or city to give biometrics, hiring an account, hiring a property appraiser, or mailing your documents.

The government of Canada tries to limit the processing time of applications to under 12 months, but in reality, the processing time of applications could exceed a few years. The processing time depends on many factors such as the method of immigration, the complexities surrounding the application, the officer who is reviewing the case, the visa-office that is undertaking the application, the completeness of the package, and more.

If you wish to visit or move to Canada or if you have encountered any issues with the immigration authorities, you may fill out our free assessment form to assess your potential opportunities or offer you immigration, visa, or citizenship advice.

About the author

Rashmi Lakkaraju

Rashmi is the founder and the lead practitioner at Cougar Immigration. She is a regulated and licensed member in good standing of the ICCRC (Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council). She is also an active member of the Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants (CAPIC).