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  • Amir Akhtar

Are you a skilled worker wanting to reside in Canada?

Updated: Oct 21, 2023

Is the Federal Skill Trades Program (FSTP) for you? If you are in a skilled trade and looking to become a permanent resident in Canada you could apply in FSTP upon being qualified. The government introduced the Express Entry system starting from January 2015 for candidates interested to apply under this program.

What is Express Entry? For the management of applications under the federal economic immigration programs such as the Federal Skilled Worker Program, The Federal Skilled Trades Program and the Canadian Experience Class, Express Entry is used.

An Express Entry profile for a candidate is filled out in order to check if the individual gets a high ranking and hence is eligible to be invited for applying for permanent residency. Information like education, skills, language ability and other details help in the assessment.

How can you get selected for FSTP? You must have a minimum of two years of full-time experience in the skilled trade one intends to apply in, an offer of full-time employment not less than a year or must be qualified with a certificate in that skilled trade issued by a provincial or territorial body. The Immigration Refugees Citizenship Canada (IRCC) sets out a National Occupational Classification (NOC) list, which has the job requirements set out for each trade. Everyone looking to apply for FSTP needs to meet all the requirements.

What is National Occupational Classification (NOC) list? The National Occupational Classification (NOC) is a system used by the Government of Canada to classify jobs. Jobs are grouped based on the type of work a person does and the types of job duties. For immigration purposes, the main groups are:

  1. Skill Type 0 (zero) – management jobs.

    • examples: restaurant managers, mine managers, shore captains (fishing)

  2. Skill Level A — professional jobs. People usually need a degree from a university for these jobs.

    • examples: doctors, dentists, architects

  3. Skill Level B — technical jobs and skilled trades. People usually need a college diploma or to train as an apprentice to do these jobs.

    • examples: chefs, electricians, plumbers

  4. Skill Level C — intermediate jobs. These jobs usually need high school and/or job-specific training.

    • examples: long-haul truck drivers, butchers, food and beverage servers

  5. Skill Level D — labour jobs. On-the-job training is usually given.

    • examples: cleaning staff, oil field workers, fruit pickers

If you want to come to Canada as a skilled immigrant (Express Entry):

  • Your job, and the work you have done in the past, must be skill type 0, or level A or B to use Express Entry.

If your job is skill level C or D:

  • you may be able to come to Canada as a provincial nominee, as long as it is not in a program for skilled workers, or

  • you may be able to work here for up to two years.

Does Quebec follow the same Federal Skill Trade Program? Most of the requirements for this category are the same, however; Quebec has its own skilled workers program. The French language is required in order to be eligible to apply for Quebec’s Federal Skill Trade Program.

Earn your points from your education for FSTP Though no specific requirements are asked for education you could earn your points by:

  • A Canadian post –secondary certificate, diploma or degree or

  • A complete foreign credential and

  • An Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report from an agency approved by Immigration Refugees Citizenship Canada (IRCC)

The foreign education must be equivalent to a completed Canadian Secondary or post secondary certificate, diploma or degree. If the ECA report is negative stating the non-equivalency of your educational qualifications, then you will not be able to benefit from that.

Can language be detrimental? One must meet the minimum third party language requirement threshold for FSTP. We recommend you to take a Immigration Refugees Citizenship Canada (IRCC) approved language test, which reflects you meet the level for reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Your language test results must not be older than two years.

Are you an employer looking for skilled workers in your trade? There may not be many skilled workers in Canada to meet your specific labor requirements. Through the FSTP you can hire a foreign worker who meets your labor needs. As an employer you will be able to access Canada’s Job Bank, private sector job boards, and Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs); where applicable.

Rank based criteria and invitation to apply for FSTP The Express Entry pool is a rank based system and candidates are assessed against other applicants to become eligible. The ranking system helps determine a newcomer’s economic success post starting up in Canada. Under Federal Skill Trades Program candidates have 60 days to apply for permanent residence. The invitation only goes out to those who have job offers for more than one year or territorial/provincial invitations.

Who is most eligible for FSTP? You partner (married or common-law) who meets the required conditions can apply as the principal applicant for FSTP. This increases the chances of your application getting through! A common-law partner is a person who has lived with you in a conjugal relationship for at least one year. It could be a partner from same sex or the opposite sex.

What is the processing time taken for Permanent resident applications under FSTP? In 80% of the cases Immigration Refugees Citizenship Canada (IRCC) takes six months or less to process completed applications under the Express Entry. Every quarter IRCC updates the processing time and shows the status of your completed application.

Choose your province or territory Choose the province or territory you want to settle in Canada and apply to the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). They will nominate you if you have the required skills, education and work experience, funds to support yourself and your family when in Canada. It’s important that you meet the labor market requirements for that province or territory. Once chosen by them you then become eligible to apply for permanent residence through the Nomination under Express Entry, PNP stream or Nomination under a non-Express Entry PNP stream.

What could stop you from coming to Canada under FSTP? There are many reasons IRCC may not let your enter or reside in Canada such as:

  • You are a security risk

  • You have committed a human or international rights violation(s)

  • You have been convicted of a criminal offence, or you have committed an act outside Canada that would be considered a criminal offence

  • You have a serious health problem

  • You lied in your application or interview

  • You do not meet the conditions in Canada’s immigration law

  • One of your family members is not allowed into Canada

You may be eligible for more than one program! You may be eligible for more than one program depending on the information in your profile. You may be invited to apply for one program based in the order below:

  • Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)

  • Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)

Contact Akhtar Immigration Services Prior to becoming our client the most common thing we hear from people is “our application returned because it was incomplete”. At Akhtar Immigration Services we use our experience to prepare your application on your behalf and put the best foot forward. Click here to contact us.

At Akhtar Immigration Services, we serve you better!

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