Express Entry – Immigration [for] Canada? No, for The Canadian Employer

By Author: Admin | January 26, 2015

The immigration department’s Express Entry system has been in effect since January 1 2015.  It seeks in incorporate all existing economic immigration categories under one umbrella.  The categories include the Federal Skilled Worker Program, some Provincial Nominee applicants, the Canada Experience Class, and the Federal Skilled Trades category. 

To apply under the Express entry program, you must qualify under the criteria for one of the categories above.  For example, a Federal Skilled worker applicant must achieve the requisite 67 points, and an CEC applicant must have at least one year of work experience in Canada in a suitably skilled occupation.

However, despite fulfilling the criteria of the long-standing programs above, the Minister of Immigration reserves the right to reject an applicant.  The Minister uses a Comprehensive Ranking System on top of the already existing criteria to assess an applicant positively.  The purpose is to allow the Minister to reserve the right to pick applicants with the highest chance of economic establishment in Canada, as defined  by in large part by the short term needs of Canadian employers.  This is an admission that the existing categories don’t produce successful immigrants in the eyes of the Minister, and that the Minister must impose an extra criteria, the Comprehensive Ranking System with the benefit of the private sector, to ensure new economic  immigrants will become successfully established in Canada.  This may keep wages lower for Canadian workers.

The Comprehensive Ranking System  allocates more points in favour of an applicant who possesses a job offer backed by  a Labour Market Impact Assessment or LMIA.  In the absence of an LMIA a candidate must register with Canada’s Federal Job Bank a hope that they are matched by an employer who is attracted to the candidate’s skills and education.

Is the above action legal?  Given a recent Federal Court of Appeal Decision, yes, and further, termination of all of the pre 2008 skilled worker cases is constitutional.  The key element of the new Express Entry system is that the application to enter the Express Entry pool requires no fee.   Under the law, it is not an application, but more akin to a request to file an application.  Many years ago this was known as a pre-application questionnaire.

Thus, when you file an application under the Express Entry system, it is a request to file an application.  What if you embellish or lie on your initial express entry profile, in the hopes that you’ll increase your chances of getting selected by the Minister for permanent residence?  If you lie on your express entry application, then you will be deemed to have misrepresented and be banned from entering Canada for five years.    This would be easily detected at the second stage after being invited to apply and submit documents within 60 days of the invitation.  I suspect many misrepresentations may be based on questionable work reference letters.

On the plus side there are no restrictions in terms of which skilled occupation one may apply under in contrast to the 2013 Federal Skilled Worker program or the Post November 2012 Canada Experience Class system both of which deemed certain skilled occupations as not in demand.

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