International & Exchange  Student CentreWestern International

Applying to Become a Permanent Resident (Landed Immigrant) of Canada

Please note: The IESC can only provide general information about Permanent Residency. If you require legal assistance with a Permanent Residency application, click here.

About Becoming a Permanent Resident of Canada

While studying in Canada, you may become interested in applying to become a Canadian Permanent Resident (also known as a Landed Immigrant). If you want to immigrate to Canada, there are a few different ways to apply. You will need to decide which immigration program will work best for you and your family.

For more information visit the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) Immigrating to Canada web page.

There are several streams through which individuals can apply for Permanent Residency.

For information on the eligibility requirements and application process for the various categories.

Federal skilled workers
For people who want to settle and work in Canada (outside of Quebec)
Skilled trades
For people who want to immigrate based on qualifications in a skilled trade.
Quebec-selected skilled workers
For people selected by the Quebec government to settle and work in Quebec
Canadian Experience Class
For people who have recent Canadian work experience or have graduated and recently worked in Canada
Start-Up Visa Program
For entrepreneurs with potential to build innovative globally-competitive companies
Self-employed Persons Program
For immigrants who will make a significant contribution to athletics or culture, or manage a farm in Canada
Provincial nominees
One of Canada’s provinces or territories can nominate you to settle and work there
Family Sponsorship
To sponsor a family member to join you if you are a permanent resident or a Canadian citizen
Live-in caregivers
For individuals who are qualified to provide care for children, elderly persons or persons with disabilities
For people in need of protection who fear persecution in their home country

Express Entry

Effective from January 1, 2015, Citizenship and Immigration Canada launched a new electronic system (Express Entry) which will expedite the processing of selected Permanent Residency (PR) applications for four economic programs: Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, Canadian Experience Class, and a portion of applicants from the Provincial Nominee Program.

Express Entry does not create a new program for Permanent Residency. It is an application management system for the four above-mentioned existing economic programs for Permanent Residency.

Express Entry is a two-step system. In the first step, potential candidates will complete an online Express Entry profile. Candidates who meet the eligibility criteria for one of the four economic programs (listed above) will be accepted into a pool of candidates. Candidates in the pool will be assessed based on a number of criteria under CIC’s new Comprehensive Ranking System.

In the second step, the candidates with the highest scores in the pool will receive an invitation from CIC to apply for Permanent Residency. Candidates who are invited to apply for Permanent Residency will have 60 days to submit a complete PR application to CIC. CIC has committed to processing the majority of those PR applications in six months or less.

*Please note that only a portion of applications for the Provincial Nominee Program will be processed under Express Entry. The Provincial Nominee Program in Ontario has confirmed that they will continue to accept applications using the normal application procedure for the International Masters Graduate stream, International PhD Graduate stream, and the International Student with a Job Offer stream.

Comprehensive Ranking System

Candidates will be ranked against others in the pool using a point-based system called the Comprehensive Ranking System. Points are awarded using the information in their profile.

"Candidates with the highest scores in the pool will be issued an Invitation to Apply. Candidates will be awarded points for:

• a job offer, and/or
• a nomination from a province or territory, and/or
• skills and experience factors"1

Visit CIC's website for more details about the new Comprehensive Ranking System.

To learn more about the Express Entry system, please visit CIC’s website:

Express Entry
Factsheet for Candidates
Comprehensive Ranking System

To create an Express Entry Profile.

Note: "Entry into the Express Entry pool does not guarantee a candidate will be issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Permanent Residence. Invited candidates still have to meet eligibility and admissibility requirements under Canada's immigration law (Immigration and Refugee Protection Act)."2

Canadian Immigration Seminar - Permanent Residency in CANADA and Working, Studying & Living in ONTARIO

Every year, the International and Exchange Student Centre hosts a seminar on Canadian Immigration. This session includes topics such as immigration to Canada, employment, and other opportunities in Ontario. The seminar is presented by representatives from the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration and the London Economic Development Corporation.
Download a PDF copy of the presentations from the Fall 2013 seminar:

• Community Legal Services Immigration Services
• Ontario Provincial Nominee Program
• Working in London

For more information, please visit our events page.

For Legal Assistance:

Please note: The IESC can only provide general information about Permanent Residency. If you require legal assistance with a Permanent Residency application, you can contact a lawyer or a regulated Canadian immigration consultant.

International Graduate Students

International Graduate students are eligible to receive free legal assistance with Permanent Residency applications through Community Legal Services (CLS) at Western’s Faculty of Law.
Community Legal Services
Faculty of Law
Law Building Room 120
Telephone: 519-661-3352

“Immigration Group Information (IGI) sessions are scheduled monthly, and students can register via CLS Scheduler. Individual appointments with the lawyer or CLS caseworker can be arranged subsequent to attendance at an information session. CLS Immigration services may also include assistance in drafting and swearing affidavits and preparing notarized copies of your documents in preparation for the above services.” 3

All International Students

The Law Society of Upper Canada offers a referral service for a free 30-minute consultation with a lawyer in Ontario. You can contact the referral service by phone at: 1-800-268-8326; or you can apply online.