Tag Archives: permanent residence

CIC Announces Spousal Sponsorship Targets for 2014

spousal-sponsorship-targets-2014

Back at the end of 2013, it was announced by Immigration Minister Chris Alexander that the CIC planned to welcome almost 50,000 sponsored partners, spouses and children this year.

Spousal Sponsorship Targets for 2014

There’s still time to apply for those looking to sponsor their partners, spouses or children, although it should be noted that from August 1, the age of dependent children who can be sponsored has dropped to under 19 years of age, even if children older are full-time students, or financially dependent on their parents. (The only exception to this is children who require their parents’ care due to a mental or physical condition.)

Spousal Sponsorship Spaces Available

Last December, the CIC released its annual immigration target levels report, which highlighted 68,000 out of a grand total of 260,000 immigration places were to be reserved for families, with 48,000 of that number to be for spouses and children. The other 20,000 were reserved for parents and also grandparents.

However, the Canadian government also recently changed some of its key regulations regarding spousal sponsorships, in particular bringing in a new conditional residency status which requires partners or spouses to be residing together for two years once they get to Canada, before the spouse or partner in question is awarded with their permanent residency status.

Another rule involves the government not allowing applicants sponsored partners to apply to sponsor a new partner within five years of their own sponsorship.

Spousal Sponsorship Controversy

According to officials, these two changes regarding spousal sponsorships have been put in place in order to minimize the number of cases of marriage fraud in the country, but already there has been controversy. Some think the two-year residency requirement may, for example, make spouses suffering from abuse feel that they have to stay with their spouse or partner for the minimum two years as the only way to attain their legal status in Canada.

The Canadian government also announced a new quota of 5,000 applications for new parents and grandparents to cover 2014.

CIC Minister Jason Kenney stated: “The Action Plan for Faster Family Reunification is on track to meet some of the goals of cutting in half the backlog and wait times in the Parent and Grandparent program. It is very important that we continue to make progress and not return to the old broken system with wait times as long as a decade – that would be unfair to families.”

Are You Interested in Spousal Sponsorship?

If you wish to sponsor your spouse, or require immigration services of any kind, contact VisaPlace to book an initial consultation today and find out more about how we can help you.

Published on: October 25th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Canada is Attracting Entrepreneurs Through the Start-up Visa

attracting-entrepreneurs-through-start-up-visa

Canada’s Start-up Visa Program, first launched last year, seems to be gathering speed and making progress on uniting Canadian venture capital funds, angel investors, business incubators and talented international entrepreneurs.

Attracting Entrepreneurs Through the Start-up Visa

Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander recently took part in a roundtable with a variety of business leaders, including Kitchener-Waterloo business incubator Communitech, in order to gather their thoughts on the Start-up Visa program and its potential for drawing in entrepreneurs.

Long-term Prosperity Through the Start-up Visa Program

Alexander said, “Our government is focused on long-term prosperity and economic growth for all Canadians. The Start-up Visa Program is helping to attract innovative entrepreneurs to Canada who can help create jobs and meet the needs of Canada’s labour market.”

Having met with the first two successful applicants the month before, Alexander took the roundtable as an opportunity to build momentum on the program and openly discuss its progress with local businesses in the area in order to encourage them to continue searching for exciting start-up opportunities and the talented people that come up with them. The Start-up Visa was initially introduced to help them do that, and Alexander seems convinced that the program will succeed.

Alexander went on to say: “We will continue to work with business leaders who can support creative business ideas and help Canada compete on a global scale.”

Growing Demand

Canada’s Start-up Visa Program is a crucial element in the Canadian government’s plan to help build an efficient and more flexible economic immigration system, which mainly focuses its attention on filling the growing demand on the Canadian economy through permanent residence.

When the program launched last year, it was the first of its kind in the world, which is something the country can be proud of. The first successful applicants entered the country in July, thanks to the support of Vancouver’s GrowLab Ventures.

Doug Couper, Managing Director of Communitech HYPERDRIVE Seed Accelerator also spoke of his enthusiasm for the scheme: “We choose the best and we want them to start, grow and succeed here in the Waterloo Region. The Start-up Visa Program helps us attract and keep the best entrepreneurs from anywhere on the globe.”

The next stage in the government’s plan seems to be the highly-anticipated Express Entry program, set to launch in January 2015 and will offer an expedited service for immigrants that can offer something back to the economy. The aim of Express Entry is to make it easier for skilled workers to enter the country than ever before.

Question: What do you think of Canada’s Start-up Visa Program?

Are You Interested in the Start-up Visa Program?

If you’re interested in learning more about the Start-up Visa Program, or currently require immigration services of any kind, contact VisaPlace today to book an initial consultation and find out more about what we can do for you.

Published on: October 23rd, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Canadian Federal Skilled Worker Program

(Below is a transcription of this video)

Question; I’m an electrician from Ireland. My family and I would like to immigrate to Canada. What do I need to know? You should take a look at the Federal Skilled Trades Program.

Understanding the Federal Skilled Worker Program

This is a new immigration category designed for skilled tradespeople who want to become Canadian permanent residents. The Canadian government recently developed this new category to address regional labor shortages.

Who Qualifies for the Federal Skilled Worker Program?

Tradespeople with secure job offers in Canada, or who are certified in one of the select trade occupations, qualify to obtain permanent residency through this program in any Canadian province, except Quebec. Electricians fall under the NOC category group. An experienced immigration lawyer can take a thorough look at your case, and help you to determine if you are eligible for the program and what will be needed to present a strong application. We can help. Visit us at VisaPlace.com to find out if you are eligible.

Do You Wish to Apply for the Federal Skilled Worker Program?

The VisaPlace Group of Lawyers (VPGs) and their staff are all independent, licensed practitioners who understand how important it is for to you to achieve your immigration goals and have been trained to follow best practices and procedures to maximize your chances of success! If you are interested in applying for the Federal Skilled Worker Program, contact us to book a consultation.

Published on: September 29th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Applying for a PR Card Renewal

(Below is a transcription of this video)

Hi. This is Michael Niren. I’m an immigration lawyer and founder of visaplace.com. Today I’m going to talk to you about PR card renewals. We handle a lot of PR card renewal applications and, generally speaking, in order to qualify for a PR card renewal, you have to remain in Canada for two years in the last five years of obtaining a PR card.

Understanding the PR Card

When permanent residents come to Canada they are typically issued a PR card, which is valid for five years. In order to renew it, you have to show physical residency in Canada for two out of those five years. Of course, there are exceptions to that rule. For example, if you are married to a Canadian citizen and you are traveling abroad, those days could count toward your residency if you are accompanying your spouse, but these are for permanent residents.

The other thing you should know is that PR cards are for travel. So, technically speaking, you could be a permanent resident and remain in Canada indefinitely without a PR card. But for those who need to travel, and most of us do, you need a permanent resident card to return to Canada as a permanent resident.

Applying for an Expedited PR card

Now, there are situations where you may need an urgent PR card. For example, if you have an emergency, a family emergency, or you have to leave right away and you don’t have a PR card, there are situations where you could be outside of Canada and then apply for a travel document from your local embassy in order to get back to Canada, even if you don’t have a PR card.

Another situation is that even if you don’t meet the residency requirements or the exceptions, you still could potentially get a PR card if you can show that your absence beyond those two years is justified or there is special circumstances. We call those humanitarian PR card applications or PR card renewals. We do a lot of those. So, if you are abroad for a lengthy period of time and you don’t meet the exceptions, you still could potentially get a PR card, but it is more difficult, of course, and it’s lengthy in terms of the process.

Are You Interested in Obtaining a PR Card?

So, if you have any other questions about PR cards, feel free to go to our website at www.visaplace.com or give us a call and we’ll be happy to help. Thank you and have a great day.

Contact our experienced team today, and let us help you with your PR Card application.

Published on: September 25th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Small Canadian Towns Hope to Replace City Migrators With New Immigrants

small-canadian-towns-replace-migrators-with-new-immigrants

Although Canadian cities are booming, it is coming at a price, with small Canadian towns getting the bad end of the bargain. In fact, many small towns and rural counties are looking towards the promise of immigrants in order to boost their local economy and breathe life back into their communities.

Small Canadian Towns Plan to Attract New Immigrants

A census from 2011 showed that 35 per cent of the Canadian population now resides in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal – and a large portion of that number is due to immigration. Now smaller towns and counties are hopeful that newcomers will also bring a much-needed boost to their local communities, too.

More Opportunities for Immigrants

One of these counties is Simcoe County in Ontario, which has used federal funding to develop a website aimed at immigrants who are either already living in the area, or who are interested in making the move north of Toronto in order to take advantage of great benefits such as cheaper property, more job opportunities, or opportunities for new business and entrepreneurship.

Sandra Lee, project manager of Simcoe’s local immigration partnership, said: “Overall immigration is important. By 2031, the natural increase in Simcoe County is only 44 residents.”

Lee recently participated in a panel at the Association of Municipalities of Ontario‘s annual conference, sharing insight in various methods that have worked – and some that haven’t – in her area. Immigration is being seen as the key to some of rural Canada’s existing demographic challenges, which is why financial emphasis is being placed upon such panels by the provincial rural affairs ministry.

Per year, Simcoe welcomes around 650 ‘direct landing’ immigrants – those who relocate directly to Ontario county from their homeland. To gain perspective, a total of 51 per cent of those living in Toronto were born outside of Canada, and around 74 per cent of Canada’s new immigrants choose to reside in big cities.

However, according to Lee, an increasing number of those who choose to settle in big cities end up moving to more rural areas because of cheaper properties and land.

A Win-win Situation

Rural areas have already begun to see the benefits that immigrants can bring, with the population of new immigrants starting to move further out. In turn, many small communities are embracing the diversity that new immigrants can bring – it’s a win-win situation.

One example of this is Peel Region; Mississauga was no stranger to new Canadian immigrants, but over the past two decades Brampton (a town further north) has also experienced a growth spurt because of an influx of new Canadians, who are now beginning to spread even further out.

Alberta is one urban municipality looking towards new immigrants to fill current gaps migrants have left when relocating to the big cities. A provincial government report backing immigration was recently released stating that without new residents, Alberta’s economic growth could in fact be “seriously hampered.”

However, with the previous successes in the west, locals are hopeful that immigrants are the answer.

Book a Consultation Today!

If you have immigration questions, VisaPlace is here to guide you through the immigration process. We work with qualified immigration lawyers who can help you with your immigrate to Canada. Contact us to book a consultation.

Published on: September 20th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

10 Things You Must Know About Bill C-24 and the New Citizenship Act

bill-c-24-new-citizenship-act

Big changes to Canada’s Citizenship Act took place in June of 2014 when Bill C-24 was read and passed for the third time, received Royal assent and thereby enacted into law. In essence, the amendment may make Canadian citizenship easier to lose and harder to get when these new provisions come into affect in about a year.

Understanding Bill C-24 and the New Citizenship Act

To understand how the passage of this bill affects the status of your Canadian citizenship, it’s imperative to familiarize yourself with the changes that were made to existing laws by Bill C-24 the new Citizenship Act in order to heighten your chances for approval and to immigrate to Canada with as few hiccups as possible.

Why The Citizenship Act Was Amended

During the Israel-Lebanon conflict in 2006, Canada’s then-Prime Minister had to oversee the evacuation from Lebanon of some 11,000 Canadian citizens who were born in Lebanon, not Canada; a large number of those Lebanese-born Canadian citizens reputedly never resided in Canada. After the initial evacuation, many of these same citizens returned to Lebanon, hence the term “Canadians of Convenience” was coined. Bill C-24 was an endeavor to tighten national security and reduce fraud where immigration was concerned.

Canadian leaders hope the passage of the bill would ensure that all Canadian citizens maintain a strong physical presence, or at least strong ties to, Canada. To reduce the numbers of “Canadians of Convenience,” new Canadian citizens must prove residence in Canada, among other things. Revocation of citizenship for Canadians who hold dual citizenship was also impacted by Bill C-24.

An exception regarding first-generation limits for “citizenship by descent” to children born to or adopted abroad by parents who were themselves born to or adopted abroad by Canadian citizens was extended when the bill was enacted into law.

A Ten-Point Checklist for Potential Immigrants

Putting your best foot forward, so to speak, during the process of applying for immigration to Canada, requires that you pay close attention to the revisions made to prevailing laws when Bill C-24 the new Citizenship Act went into effect. Residency now plays an even larger role for successful immigration to and citizenship in Canada. Here’s a checklist of many of those changes and  how they impact prerequisites for citizenship:

  1. “Intent to reside” in Canada was revised.
  2. The meaning of a Canadian resident has now been clarified; residency must meet the “4 out of 6 years” requirement for citizenship.
  3. Canadian Permanent Residents are required to be physically present in Canada for a minimum of 183 days per year during each year in the required 4 out of 6 years.
  4. The time a non-Permanent Resident spends in Canada does not count toward the 6-year residency stipulation.
  5. Potential immigration applicants must meet language requirements in English or French, Canada’s official languages.
  6. Applicants for Canadian citizenship between the ages of  14 and 64 must pass the citizenship exam AND meet language requirements in English or French.
  7. Applicants may be refused because of fraud.
  8. Applicants must meet any applicable prerequisites under the Income Tax Act to file an income tax return; adult applicants must file Canadian income taxes in order to be eligible for citizenship.
  9. Citizen-granting process has been reduced from three steps to a more streamlined one-step process.
  10. Tougher restrictions on citizenship for applicants with criminal charges and convictions were added.

What the Changes Mean for You

Strengthened residency requirements may have the most impact on many citizenship applicants, especially for immigrants who have already been living in Canada but who have not yet achieved Permanent Resident (PR) status. Applications for Permanent Resident can take up to a year to process, and the hopeful PR applicant must work for a period of one year in Canada before they can apply to become a PR. Any previous time spent in Canada does not count towards the 4 out of 6-year residency requirement . Only after an immigrant achieves PR status does the countdown clock begin for the four years he or she must spend in Canada.

Changes in ages from 18 – 54 to 14 – 64 for those who can take the citizenship exam and who must pass language tests mean more applicants must be able to prove their knowledge of both Canada’s official language and civics questions pertaining to the country. These particular changes wrought by Bill C-24 the new Citizenship Act are ostensibly geared toward the hopeful citizen’s preparedness to fully take part in Canada society.

The new, one-step, streamlined citizen-granting process gives citizenship officers the power to grant or deny a citizenship application. Admittedly, under the old system, more steps, and much duplication took place, but many who object to the new law worry that the increased power given to citizenship officers may adversely affect citizenship-granting decisions, or that explanations and reasons for denial will not be clear or fully forthcoming.

The new “intent to reside” requirement makes it easier for the Canadian government to revoke citizenship, especially in cases where misrepresentation on citizenship applications is suspected, even if no misrepresentation was intended on the part of the applicant.

Do You Need Help Regarding Bill C-24 and the New Citizenship Act?

Comprehending all requirements of the new amendments to Canada’s Bill C-24 the new Citizenship Act, and knowing how to fulfill themcan feel overwhelming. Licensed, independent practitioners at VisaPlace can help with any immigration services you may require and assist you with achieving your immigration goals. We encourage you to schedule a consultation with us as soon as possible to answer any of your questions or concerns, and, most important, to maximize your chances of success.

Published on: September 17th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Options for Immigration to Canada

(Below is a transcription of this video)

Hi. My name is Michael Niren. I’m founder of visaplace.com, an immigration
lawyer. Today I’m going to talk to you just in general terms about Canada
immigration or immigrating to Canada.

Exploring the Options for Immigration to Canada

As many of you may know, there are
many different routes to get permanent residence:

The Provincial Nominee Program

For example, there’s the federal skilled worker category. There’s the
family class where you’re sponsored by a relative. There’s the business
route where you can potentially invest in a province and apply under the
Provincial Nominee Program. There’s also applying for a temporary resident
visa where you can ultimately apply for permanent resident down the road.

There’s many, many different options. These days Canadian immigration law
is very complex. The good news is that there are so many different ways to
potentially qualify or get qualified for Canadian immigration. In the past
there weren’t as many options. Now with the provincial programs we have
many provinces in Canada and each province, or most of the provinces, have
their own Provincial Nominee Program.

Federal Programs Offering Permanent Residence

In addition, we have the federal program which offers different options as
well. The trick to qualifying, to getting permanent residence is to
understand what each person’s case is all about. That’s the challenge. I
recommend a detailed consultation to find out what your situation is, what
are your credentials, what are your goals, what are your timelines, and
what is the best route to go to get your permanent residence?

Let Us Discuss Your Options for Immigration to Canada

That’s the first step. Once we map out a plan, then we can execute it. We
can follow it and get you to where you want to go. Our goal as immigration
lawyers is to, first and foremost, understand what your needs are and
understand your situation. Then we can take it from there. If you’re
interested in Canadian immigration, feel free to contact us or go on our
website at www.visaplace.com. We’ll be more than happy to discuss your
case.

There’s an online assessment that we have on our website that’s really good
because what you do is you fill out some forms and answer some questions,
and that enables us to really understand your situation even before we talk
to you. This way we can map out a plan for you and get you to Canada.

Thank you, and have a great day.

Contact our experienced team today, and let us help you gain permanent residence in Canada.

Published on: August 20th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

New Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Progam in the Works

Earlier in the year, Canada’s immigration minister, Chris Alexander announced the promise of an ‘immigration investor venture capital pilot’ scheme. Since then, the world has been waiting with baited breath.

However, Canada’s immigrant investor program is ‘troubled’ due to problems with past similar programs.

The New Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Progam

The Immigrant Investor Venture Capital Pilot Progam should allow foreign nationals to apply for and acquire Canadian permanent residence visas. Obviously, on the condition that they start up their own businesses in Canada.

Apparently, under the latest plan, applicants will have to invest over twice the amount of the previous immigrant investor program (IIP). The investment will also have to take place over a longer period than the last program.

Selling Citizenship

Just last week, Justice Mary Gleason of the Federal Court of Canada quotes the old truism: “Asking for something does not create a right to it.”

There was an outcry in February when Alexander announced the closure of the IIP, with around 25,000 outstanding applications.

Taking families into account, it’s estimated that around 65,000 people lost their chance of Canadian citizenship.

New Immigrant Investor Program

The formal announcement is expected to be made later in the year, along with full details of the scheme, which is expected this fall. However, we do have some details right now, revealed by Alexander, himself:

  • The minimum required investment will be higher than the IIP, which was CAN$800,000. Now, they’ll have to fork out over twice as much.
  • IIP applicants had to make their investment over a period of five years. The duration will definitely be longer this time around, although exact details aren’t clear at the moment.
  • The investment must be genuine, not reliant on a loan. Applicants must provide a “larger investment in an at-risk project focused on the start-up side of the venture capital spectrum.”
  • Residency and language requirements are not expected to be particularly stringent. According to Alexander: “We respect the fact that not everyone starts from the same point of departure and we give a lot of English second-language support to those who don’t have a very high level when they arrive.”
  • The first version of the plan will likely mean applicants will have to invest in a venture capital fund. These would be managed by Canadian venture capitalists.
  • Initially, investors won’t have a say about which schemes their investment is applied to. The investments will be put into a single find. But when the pilot later becomes a program, immigrants can provide feedback and advice.

What do you think of the proposed new immigrant investor program so far? Let us know in the comments.

Are You Interested in Applying for the New Immigrant Investor Program?

VisaPlace only works with qualified immigration lawyers who can help you pursue your immigration goals. If you are interested in applying for the new Immigrant Investor Program, contact us to book a consultation.

Published on: August 17th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Everything You Need to Know About the Express Entry Program

epress-entry-program-immigration-canada

 

In January 2015, the Canadian government are set to launch a new electronic immigration system that will offer express entry for skilled and qualified immigrants.

About the Express Entry Program

The new Express Entry program will manage applications for permanent residence for immigrants who can fill jobs where there is a lack of available skilled Canadian workers.

The Canadian government has recognized the fact that Canada requires new immigrants to meet future labour market needs and to help ensure the country’s long-term economic growth and prosperity.

The Programs Affected

The new system will allow Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to pro-actively assess, recruit and select immigrants who are skilled and/or possessed the relevant qualifications under federal economic immigration programs:

The Express Entry program will also allow individual provinces and territories to use the system in order to recruit suitable candidates as part of the Provincial Nominee Programs so that labour market demands are met.

Employers will play a key part in selecting economic immigrants, and will be able to access suitable candidates via Canada’s recently improved Job Bank, as well as the relevant provinces and territories where applicable.

Permanent Residence  Opportunities

The good news is that candidates who are eligible for the Express Entry program and who are either offered jobs or nominated under the provincial nominee program will then be welcomed to apply for permanent residency.

Immigration Minister Chris Alexander said at a recent press conference: “You can bring your labour market opinion, your job offer, to the Express Entry system and ensure that the person you need comes to Canada as an immigrant, not a temporary foreign worker. Not as someone who is here with an uncertain future and likely to go back, but as a full immigrant to Canada.”

There are two main steps to the Express Entry system, which we’re going to go over in more detail below:

Step 1: Potential candidates fill out an online Express Entry form

 

Candidates who are eligible for the Express Entry program can complete an online profile which will include various details about themselves, including their skills, their language ability, education and previous work experience, amongst others. Candidates who successfully meet the criteria of one or more of the federal economic immigration programs under Express Entry will then be sorted into a pool of eligible individuals.

These individuals will be ranked according to their chances of economic success, and the highest ranking candidates, along with those who have qualifying offers of employment or provincial/territorial nominations (who will automatically receive high rankings), will receive a formal invitation to apply for permanent residency.

This way of doing things will allow Canada to pick the best possible candidates who are likely to go on to achieve success, rather than simply picking whoever is next in line.

Candidates who do not have a valid job offer or provincial/territorial nomination must sign up to the Government’s of Canada’s Job Bank, so that he or she can be connected to relevant Canadian employers.

Eligible employers will need to obtain a free Labour Market Impact Assessment via Employment and Social Development Canada for permanent residence applications.

There is no guarantee that candidates who fill out an Express Entry profile will be invited to apply for permanent residence, as this will mainly be determined by their ranking and the other factors mentioned above (offer of employment, provincial/territorial nomination).

Step 2: CIC will invite successful candidates and permanent residency will be processed within 6 months

 

Those ranking highly in the pool (based on skills, experience, eligible job offers and relevant nominations where applicable) will then be invited to apply for permanent residency, and will have a total of 60 days to submit their electronic application.

Electronic applications will be required to be submitted through one of the below programs:

Most applications will be pushed through swiftly by CIC, with many expected to be completed within six months.

Candidates who have applied for the Express Entry program but who are not invited to apply for permanent residency after a year may then resubmit their profile and re-enter the pool, provided they are still eligible for the program. This is to prevent backlogs and allow for quicker processing and turnaround times.

According to CIC, the Express Entry program will allow faster and more efficient immigration services to skilled immigrants. The program will also enable the Canadian Government to respond faster to Canada’s evolving economic conditions and changing priorities, and will increase flexibility.

Not All Immigrants ‘Sold’ on Idea

It goes without saying that many are welcoming the new, more efficient system, although a recent government study has suggested that not all immigrants are as taken with the January-anticipated Express Entry Program.

Some have expressed doubt’s about why places such as Ottawa aren’t doing more to ensure qualified immigrants already in the country get access to jobs, including those who “have been frustrated by the lack of recognition of their credentials and their inability to acquire a sufficient amount of Canadian experience.”

The government has expressed hope that the new program will reduce the amount of temporary foreign workers and help to address Canada’s current skills shortage. Alexander has stressed this is a “top priority”.

He said: “Express entry promises to be a game-changer for Canadian immigration and Canada’s economy. It will revolutionize the way we attract skilled immigrants and get them working here faster.”

Fraud concerns over the new scheme have already been addressed by Citizenship and Immigration, according to an official who stated: “Any applicant providing false information in either their Express Entry profile or permanent resident application could be found inadmissable due to misrepresentation.”

Any fraudulent applications could result in applicants being barred from applying to enter Canada again for five years.

Back in June, the Canadian government began accepting applications under the Federal Skilled Worker Program ahead of the Express Entry system launch, and is looking to actively recruit 25,000 skilled immigrants over 50 separate occupations, including auditors and accountants, financial managers, psychologists and civil engineers – with more to follow.

“Huge Obstacles” Associated with the Express Entry Program

However, participants in the recent Ipsos Reid study have expressed their concerns on the supposed lack of interest in Canada’s current skilled immigrants who are also looking for jobs.

Yet another government study has suggested that skilled immigrants such as engineers, doctors and pharmacists are struggling to find jobs and face “huge obstacles” despite their high credentials.

There is good news on the horizon for those existing immigrants and others who have expressed their concern over the lack of current opportunities, as the Canadian government has stated they will address these concerns and more very shortly (fall 2014).

As for the Express Entry program, the government want to ensure its every success and plan to invest $14 million over the next two years, with a further cash injection of $4.7 million after that.

Are You Interested in the Express Entry Program?

If you are in need of immigration services or advice about immigrating to Canada, contact the experts at VisaPlace to book a consultation today. We work with qualified immigration lawyers who will be happy to help..

Published on: August 17th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

Live-in Caregiver Program May Face Overhaul

As reported by TheStar.com -  Employment Minister Jason Kenney criticized the LCP (Live-in Caregiver Program) as being “out of control” and having “mutated” into a program of family reunification, in meetings with the media to discuss Ottawa’s planned reforms to the temporary foreign workers program.

Live-in Caregiver Program Changes Sparks Concern

This has prompted outrage in some quarters as well as fear that the path of permanent residency through LCP may be coming to a close. “This is a defining issue for the Filipino Canadian community,” said Chris Sorio of Migrante Canada.

The Live-in Caregiver Program grants permanent status after the caregiver meets the two-year full-time live-in employment requirement, and allows their spouses and children to join them at that point – a key incentive for caregivers to choose to work in Canada despite the family separation of up to four years or more.

“This is something very close to our hearts. It is worrying us because we feel this could be a smoke-screen for changes that are coming to the LCP program. Our concern is they are going to further restrict family reunification under the program.” Chris Sorio continued.

Live-in Caregiver Program Falls Under Re-Assessment

At a closed to the media consultation in Vancouver, Immigration Minister Chris Alexander said “the government intends to “modernize” the program and asked participants what they thought of the “automatic permanent residency” afforded to caregivers under the LCP”.

What Is the Fate of the Live-in Caregiver Program?

Given Canada’s shortage of childcare spaces and growing need for elder care, it seems unlikely to Kenney will abolish the program. However; his allegations about abuse of the program sound similar to claims he made about other immigration and refugee programs before major overhauls were introduced.

Critics of the government’s approach warn that the growing Filipino Canadian vote could also be at stake in next year’s federal election if the government removes access to immigration from the LCP — 90% of those participating are from the Philippines.

We will report more on this and other related immigration stories as the information becomes available.

Are You Interested the Live-in Caregiver Program?

The VisaPlace Group of Lawyers (VPGs) and their staff are all independent, licensed practitioners who understand how important it is for to you to achieve your immigration goals and have been trained to follow best practices and procedures to maximize your chances of success! If you are interested in immigrating to Canada through the Live-in Caregiver Program, we may be able to help. Contact us to book a consultation.

Published on: August 16th, 2014Published by: Michael Niren

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