New Ministerial Instructions for Skilled Worker Applications

New Skilled Worker Applications News

Details of the long-awaited “ministerial instructions” were posted on the CIC website on November 27, 2008, and come into effect immediately for Skilled Worker Applications.

The new set of eligibility criteria applys to all new federal skilled worker applications received on or after February 27, 2008. All applications made before February 27, 2008, will be processed according to the rules that were in effect at that time.

Skilled Worker Applications eligibility

According to the instructions, applications are eligible for fast processing if they:

  • include an offer of arranged employment, or
  • are from a foreign national living legally in Canada for one year as a temporary foreign worker or
  • international student; or
  • are from a skilled worker who has at least one year of experience within 10 years proceeding the submission of application under one or more of the 38 specific high-demand occupations.

Under the new rules, applicants should receive a decision within six to 12 months opposed to previous wait times of up to six years.

New applications that do not meet the eligibility criteria will not be processed, and the application fee will be refunded.

This does not mean that it is the end of the immigration applications for those who do not meet the new instructions. There are many ways to immigrate to Canada, and you may qualify under another category, eg. Temporary Foreign Worker Program, PNP Program, CEC, Investors, Live-in-Caregiver, Family Class, Refugee, etc.

The new rules are aimed at responding to Canada’s changing labour market and exonomic needs. As Minister Kenney said “There is no fixed schedule (to update the list), but we will monitor and amend it as necessary”.

If you think you are qualified as a skilled worker but unfortunately not eligibile under the current new criteria, you may want to consult with experienced immigration lawyers or professionals to explore the best ways to immigrate to Canada.

Click here for the list of the 38 qualifying occupations for Skilled Worker Applications.

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Michael Niren

About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

3 thoughts on “New Ministerial Instructions for Skilled Worker Applications

  1. Ali

    I submitted my application in May 2008, and today got a letter stating I am ineligible for immigration, as I do not fall under any of the job categories. As I work as a web developer (for the past 2.5 years), does this not come under the category of IT? And do I need to specifically be in a managerial position? Thanks!

  2. Nikkie Peter

    No, you don’t need to re-apply.Provided that you filed under federal skill worker category with good enough back ground, i.e. eligibility as per your occupation.Just remind the consulate by latter under reference of your application file that now you are qualified under new system.

  3. Fatima

    I submitted my application for federal skill category on 3rd june 2008 as physician. Now as per fast track processing, do i need to apply again? Or will the immigration officer will contact me for further i applied with simplified application process?


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