The Canada Experience Class, an economic immigrant category in existence since 2008, was an example of a logical, transparent program characterized by efficient processing times; an applicant had to have been legally employed for one year in a skilled job, in some cases after graduating from a Canadian college or university; transparent no longer.
The shift of the CEC from a straightforward program to select good prospects for Canadian immigration was a gradual one. In November 2012, some occupations (the popular ones) were erased from the CEC class. Then in 2013, the Express Entry System was floated, with more and more announcements throughout the year 2014. Immigration lawyers, properly concerned about the ambiguity of the Express Entry, advised any applicant who would qualify under the CEC to lodge an application before the subsuming of the CEC under the Express Entry system, i.e. filing a CEC application before December 31 2014. The idea was that by having your CEC application filed before December 31 2014, your application would avoid the randomness of the Express Entry system.
This strategy received implicit endorsement at least during December 2014. At that time, the immigration department advised to Canadian immigration lawyers that the cap of 8000 applicants was not yet reached. However in the past week i.e. around January 20 2015, many self filed applicants on immigration forums have confirmed that their applications were not successfully filed at the Sydney Immigration Office. Many of these applications were submitted during October 2014 have come back returned in their entirety.
In effect, despite the fact that the express Entry System not launched until 01/01/2015, the immigration department closed off the predecessor Canadian Experience Class system during October 2014. What happened? It may be that given the lackluster review of the upcoming Express Entry program, many applicants felt it appropriate to try to file their CEC applications under the more accountable and transparent 2014 Canada Experience Class category – a sensible strategy given the mystery of the current Express Entry system – a system that provides an additional point system (the Comprehensive Ranking System) the pass mark of which depends in part on who else is applying in the pool of applicants during one of the bi-weekly draws by CIC, the first of which occurred on January 31 2015.
In effect, any application submitted from October 2014 to the end of December 2014 will not be assessed under the Canada Experience Class. Rather, those applications will be deemed to have never existed, despite the fact that the applications were received when the Canada experience class system was still officially open.
Many self-filing applicants reported that along with the application forms they submitted, the immigration department included a pamphlet describing the Express Entry system, presumably to encourage applicants to reapply under the Express Entry system.
In situations such as the above, where an applicant filed Canada experience class application between October 2014 and 31 December 2014, it may be appropriate to file an online profile under the Express Entry system.
However, the filing and express entry profile does not provide the same degree of certainty as existed for applications submitted under the Canada experience class prior to October 2014..
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