The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) is one avenue to gain permanent residency. A two-step process, it essentially allows participating provinces to identify areas of economic growth and labour shortage and bring in individuals and families that are well suited to meet these needs. In short, the PNP program may be a great avenue for permanent residency as it focuses more on an applicants in-demand skills rather than post-secondary degrees or language requirements.
Please remember that the following is a general guide to the PNP process. Each participating province and territory has its own process. Please give us a call to discuss your individual application.
Step One: Apply for the PNP program & establish your province of interest Each participating province and territory has identified areas where it needs skilled individuals, to meet its economic goals or to address labour shortages. If you believe that you have the skills and background identified by a province, and are willing to settle down within the province, then you are ready to begin your application.
There are two broad streams to apply for the PNP within the province: The paper based process and the online express entry process. In both cases, your application usually begins once you have a job offer from an employer who is working in a sector identified by the province explicitly as a target area under a PNP stream.
The paper based process – You apply using a paper application to the province of interest directly. The province evaluates your application to see how well you meet their needs and your ability to settle in the province as well as Canada.
The online Express Entry process- The express entry group is actually a pool of applicants seeking permanent residency through the following Federal Programs: the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class. As a PNP applicant, you can either apply to a province through one of their PNP streams and then be recommended by the province themselves for application into one of the Express Entry streams OR you can begin your application through the Express Entry pool and apply to PNP programs across several provinces. In this second method, an interested province will send you a notification of interest which will then allow you to apply to their own express entry streams.
It is important to note that the criteria for assessment in the Express Entry pool is different than your assessment in the PNP program. A successful nomination results in 600 points, which normally results in an Invitation to Apply (ITA) to the programs whose requirements you appear to meet.
Step Two- Apply to a Federal Visa Officer for permanent residency
Once you have been nominated by the province, your application still needs to be accepted by a federal visa officer. Ultimately, the decision to grant permanent residency rests with IRCC. Your application is reviewed to make sure that you have the means to establish yourself within Canada and to make sure that there are no inadmissibility issues.
Though your nomination by the province will get a lot of deference by the officer, it is important to note that they are able to assess your likelihood of successfully settling down and can consult the province of nomination to assess your intentions of settling down within it.
Step 3- Settlement
If you are successful in gaining permanent residency through the PNP stream, you have an obligation to settle in the province that nominated you. Although there is no minimum time period to remain in the province, moving needs to be justified.