Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Canada announced that it plans to welcome more than 1 million new immigrants. Are you interested? Read on to learn more about how to immigrate to Canada.
By some accounts there are already more than 1 million Filipinos in Canada, making invaluable contributions to every facet of Canadian society.
Anectodal records indicate that Filipinos first landed in the province of Manitoba, when a small group of healthcare workers crossed into Canada from the United States.
Filipinos haven’t looked back since.
Today, there are Filipino communities in every province and territory in Canada. Filipinos continue to be one of the fastest growing communities in the country, second only to the Chinese and South Asians.
Canada has become the destination of choice for many Filipino families. Is it time to take a closer look at Canada to see if it’s a good fit for you and your family?
There are four main ways that Filipinos go to Canada: to visit, to study, to work and to immigrate.
Canada has always been reliant on immigration to grow both its population and its economy, and that won’t change anytime soon.
That being said, going to Canada is an extremely complicated process that will involve a lot of time and effort on your part. Whether you’re going as a tourist, an international student, an Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) or as a permanent resident, there will be forms to complete and requirements to be submitted, not to mention the costs involved.
Remember, a lot of things in Canada are publicly-funded (AKA paid for by the government). They certainly don’t want foreigners to come and enjoy things Canadian citizens and permanent residents are heavily taxed for, including universal healthcare and education.
Which is why it’s very important to learn as much as you can about Canada, make the necessary preparations and to temper your expectations when you get there.
It’s good to keep in mind that Canada has one of the world’s most dynamic immigration systems. Currently, there are more than 80 different pathways for those interested in immigrating to Canada.
What are the different ways to immigrate to Canada?
Economic and Business Immigration Programs
If you are a professional with skills that would enable you to make positive contributions to the Canadian economy, you should definitely take a closer look at Canada’s economic and business immigration programs.
Each program has different application requirements, and availability can change without much advanced notice.
Economic and business immigration programs include:
- Express Entry
- Provincial nominee Programs (PNPs)
- Quebec Immigration
- Investor, Entrepreneur and Self-Employed Programs
- Other programs including the Caregiver Program
- Pilot programs including the Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP), the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) and the Agri-Food Pilot (AFP).
Another popular immigration category is family sponsorship.
Citizens and Permanent Residents can submit a sponsorship application to have their qualified relatives join them in Canada.
Qualified relatives may include:
- Spouses or common law partners
- Dependent children
- Parents and grandparents
Citizens and Permanent Residents who do not have any of the aforementioned relatives may submit a sponsorship application for other relatives including:
- Orphaned siblings
- Orphaned nephews or nieces
- Orphaned grandchildren
Canada is recognized as a world leader for granting refugee status to those fleeing persecution in their home countries.
A percentage of Canada’s immigration targets are set aside for applications made under humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
How much Show Money do you need to immigrate to Canada?
Depending on which immigration program you apply for, you may need to provide Proof of Funds (what is commonly known as ”Show Money”.
Not all immigration programs require Proof of Funds, while others require a significant amount of money.
Economic and Business Immigration Programs – in most cases, if you submit an application under an economic immigration program, you must provide documentary evidence that you will have the financial means to support yourself and any family members that might be joining you.
Certain economic and business immigration programs do not require Proof of Funds, but do require that the principal applicant have a minimum amount of Canadian experience or a qualifying offer of employment.
In most cases, applications made under business immigration programs require proof of that you have the resources to either put up a new business or purchase an existing business in Canada.
Family sponsorship – in most cases, Proof of Funds are not required for submitting a sponsorship application for a spouse, common law partner or dependent children. However, Proof of Funds will be required when submitting sponsorship applications for parents and grandparents.
Refugee sponsorship – Proof of Funds are not required for applications made under humanitarian and compassionate grounds. However, privately sponsored refugees must submit their Canadian sponsor’s financial information.
What are the basic requirements for submitting an immigration application to Canada?
The requirements for submitting an application are different for every immigration program.
Basic requirements may include:
- Government-issued identification and travel documents
- transcripts of records from educational institutions
- certificates of employment
- police clearances
- results of medical examinations
- proof of language proficiency
- bank documents
Which program has the shortest processing times?
The Express Entry System has the fastest processing times for any Canadian immigration program, with most applications processed in 6 months or less.
Is there an age limit for immigrating to Canada?
While there is no explicitly stated age limit for immigration applications, applicants in the 25 to 35 year old age group are given the maximum amount of points.
Older applicants may receive additional points for categories that younger applicants may not have, including education and work experience, language proficiency, as well as established connections to Canada.
How difficult is it to immigrate to Canada?
Just like most countries, submitting an application under any of Canada’s immigration programs is an involved process that requires a great deal of preparation, as well as resources.
The requirements for each immigration program is different, but all will need careful planning.
In most cases, submitting an application under economic or business immigration programs do not require the use of an immigration consultant or lawyer.
For Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who are submitting an application under immigration programs that are under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) additional requirements must be submitted. Both OFWs and their Canadian employers are required to submit additional requirements to multiple Canadian and Philippine Government offices.
Do you need to have a job offer from a Canadian employer before immigrating to Canada?
In most cases, you do not need a job offer from a Canadian employer when you submit an immigration application.
Some immigration programs do require an approved job offer from a Canadian employer, including some PNPs.
What is a Permanent Resident (PR)?
Permanent residents are people who are citizens of other countries who have been approved to live in Canada.
Permanent residents can live and work in Canada, and enjoy most of the rights and responsibilities of Canadian citizens.
Permanent residents cannot vote during elections, run for public office or apply for a Canadian passport.
Permanent residents can still be deported from Canada.
What is a Canadian Citizen?
Canadian citizens have all of the rights and responsibilities of permanent residents, plus others that they don’t.
Canadian citizens can vote during elections, run for public office and apply for a Canadian passport.
Everyone born in Canada is automatically a Canadian citizen, while others, including permanent residents, must meet the minimum requirements before being able to apply for Canadian citizenship.
Canadian citizens cannot be deported, but dual citizens may have their Canadian citizenship revoked under certain circumstances.
Can you work for any Canadian employer when you arrive in Canada?
If you come to Canada as a Permanent Resident, you can live and work anywhere in Canada.
That means that you can apply for any employment opportunity that is available to permanent residents.
Some employment opportunities, such as those that require security clearances with government agencies, give priority to Canadian citizens.
Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who come to Canada under employer-specific Work Permits are only allowed to work for Canadian employers who are authorized to hire foreign nationals.
Can you bring family members with you when you immigrate to Canada?
Depending on which immigration program you apply for, you may be able to bring your qualified family members with you.
Certain immigration programs, such as the Express Entry System, allow only spouses, common-law partners and dependent children.
Others, such as family sponsorship programs, allow Canadian citizens and permanent residents to submit applications for other relatives including parents and grandparents.
Why does Canada need so many immigrants?
Canada has always been dependent on immigration to grow its population and economy.
Having one of the world’s most dynamic immigration systems has allowed Canada to address its population and labour requirements by allowing the best and brightest people from around the world to come to Canada with their families.
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