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Who is Eligible For Express Entry to Canada?


As of January 1, 2015, the new express entry system came into play that has revolutionized the Canadian immigration system.

So far, thousands of candidates have been issued invitations to apply for Canadian permanent residence under the new scheme. But who is eligible? We’re going to explain more about the new system below.

Express Entry Eligibility

Anyone who is eligible for Canada’s main federal economic immigration programs can submit their online profile for Express Entry. These include:

  • The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
  • The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FTWP)
  • The Canadian Experience Class
  • A portion of Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)

If you’re wondering about how PNPs work, this is Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s (CIC) explanation: “Provinces and territories can also recruit candidates from the Express Entry system through their Provincial Nominee Programs to meet local labour market needs.”

How Express Entry Works

Express Entry allows applicants to create an online profile so that they can be entered into an online pool. There, they are given up to 600 points for various human capital factors, and are scored according to the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS).

An additional 600 points are awarded for those who receive a job offer or Provincial Nomination (PNP).

Candidates who enter the pool and score highly enough will then be selected based on regular ‘draws’ by the Canadian government, with those selected being invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence. In the past, the draws have required candidates to have a certain number of points, which could be anything from over 700 (meaning that candidates require either a job offer or provincial nomination), to much lower (with one draw only requiring 469 CRS points)

According to CIC: “Anyone who is accepted into the Express Entry pool could get an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence. Rounds of invitations to invite candidates to apply will take place regularly over the course of each year. We will only pick the top ranking candidates no matter when they are accepted into the pool.”

The Best Chance of Success

Although candidates do not always need a job offer or provincial nomination to be selected from the pool, we still recommend that you work on your profile to ensure you have as many points as possible, and keep your profile up-to-date at all times.

Simple things such as gaining extra work experience or passing a language test could make all the difference between being issued an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence, and still waiting for your chance to be selected.

Applicants who are issued invitations by CIC will have 60 days to apply for permanent residence in Canada.

Are You Interested in Applying for Express Entry?


If you’re interested in immigrating to Canada via the express entry system, we at visaplace can help. We will assess your case, highlight the best aspects of your application, and make sure that the government notices you! This way, your chances of getting an invitation are maximized.

Call us today for an assessment to see if you are eligible for Express Entry to Canada, or fill out our online assessment form.

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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

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