Applying for Canada Permanent Resident Visa: Step-by-step process

It is very important to follow every step carefully in order to adhere with the PR application process as standardized by Canadian government. Failure in any of the step can result in ineligibility or defaulter from the application process. Here is a step-by-step process:

Step 1: National Occupation Classification (NOC) of Canada

It is important to find the relevant job in the NOC based on what experience you have obtained so far. This is the first and foremost important step that helps you find if you are eligible.

It isn’t difficult to find job in Canada. Similarly, Canada has a long demand list for the skilled workers. The great north nation has a lot to offer when it comes to career opportunities. They do not only provide with the work but also provide with the opportunity to get permanent residency. However, this requires the proper understanding and knowledge on the demand list. There are over 300 occupations listed which provides with lots of options. However, this could also make the application process tricky. Each of the occupation comes with a code. There are high chances for entering wrong code. The immigration of Canada reports to have rejected over 80% of the visa applications just because of the entry of wrong code for occupation.

The government of Canada has a classification of all the occupation the country is experiencing the shortage of. The database categorizes all possible occupations where they need to fill with the skilled workers. Further, the foreign immigrants apply for Canada Permanent Residence based on their preference on either of these classified occupations.

You can retrieve the NOC list and find the NOC code for each job title and the required skill level. NOC code is a 4 digit number. This NOC system helps the government of Canada to classify the jobs and group them based on job duties and work the person performs. There are five different skill levels: 0, A, B, C, and D.

Skill Level Zero is more management related jobs. The job roles like mine managers, restaurant managers and shore captains are some that require skill type zero.

Skill Level A seeks for university degree and classifies professional jobs. Doctors, dentists, architects etc. make to this list.

Skill Level B defines the technical jobs. They may require diploma or apprenticeship or training. There are skill associated responsibilities. Chefs, plumbers, and electricians are some of the examples for this skill type.

Skill Level C demands for as little qualification as high school or any job related knowledge. They do not seek for formal higher education or skill trades. Industrial butchers, waiters, truck drivers etc. make to this list. Having job related training is enough for such works.

Skill Level D is for the labor type jobs. They receive on-the-job training and do not require prior work related trainings or formal education certificates. Cleaning staff, fruit pickers, field workers etc. make to this classification.

When applying for skilled workers program, the skill level 0, A and B are the ones the applicant should browse through. It is important to find the right code. The immigration authority also uses the NOC to check the eligibility based on skill and preferred occupation.

Atlantic Immigration Pilot allows the applicants with skill level C also to apply for the permanent residency under this scheme. Unlike Express entry offering the immigration option only for skilled worker, skilled traders or Canadian experience class, Provincial Nominee Class accepts all skill levels. On temporary work permit, the candidate may work up to two years and then apply for permanent residency or directly opt for permanent residency visa.


NOCTitleSkill Type
0111Financial managers0
0211Engineering managers0
0311Managers in health care0
1111Financial auditors and accountantsA
1114Other financial officersA
1121Human resources professionalsA
1221Administrative officersB
1224Property administratorsB
1241Administrative assistantsB
1422Data entry clerksC
1432Payroll administratorsC
6731Light duty cleanersD
8614Mine laborersD
8611Harvesting laborersD

The above table presents some of the job titles, their NOC codes and skill types. The government classifies the skill level and job titles for all industries and provide them with a code. You can find the entire NOC list in the official website. The government updates demand lists based on the requirement in different industries and regions. Therefore, it is always helpful to stay updated as the occupation you prefer might change in the list.

Step 2: Check your eligibility

For express entry program, you have three different streams for application. You can either apply for federal skilled worker, federal skilled trades or Canadian experience class. All of the three economic programs have their own eligibility requirements. It is helpful to find the right one and proceed with the necessary steps with the very program. Each of them require relevant experience and qualification. Check if you score more than 67 points. The scoring criteria are education, age, work experience, language proficiency, and adaptability and arranged employment. You can check if you are eligible for Express entry answering few questions.

Step 3: Get the education certificates verified

It is important to get all the education documents verified. World Education Services (WES) is a popular program that helps you through the process at the standard cost. This step of Education Credential Assessment is important. You can also start getting all your documents ready. Make sure not to miss any document. Follow up with this document checklist and get all the documents important for the application of Canada Permanent Residency visa.

Step 4: Certificate of Language proficiency and employment experiences

Language proficiency is very important. The candidate needs to obtain good IELTS bands. The IELTS include test on reading, writing, listening and speaking. Further, the candidate also needs to produce experience letters from your former employers.

Step 5: Get the CRS score

The other step is to get your CRS score. Having knowledge on documents required for every program also helps. This will help you stay prepared throughout the application process. Based on the CRS score you obtain, the IRCC ranks you in the pool of candidates. Various aspects as aforementioned contribute in calculating the CRS score. For this you will have to create an Express Entry profile. You will have to follow all the instructions as stated in the website and provide with your personal information. You will need to upload few documents like language proficiency tests. Similarly, you will also have to fill in with the NOC code and job title. Make sure to complete the process within 60 days and submit the profile or you will need to start the process again.

Step 6: Lodge the application

After the steps above, you can lodge the application for the Express Entry program. It is better to tick mark on all provinces when you lodge the application. This opens the applicant to be eligible for PNP program if they don’t make it to Express Entry.

Step 7: Registering with the job bank

It is optional however, getting job profile ready and registered in the job bank always provides the heads up and eases for job hunting process.

Step 8: Wait for Invitation to Apply

You will have to wait for ITA from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). They conduct the draws two times in a month.

Step 9: Proceed for application

Upon receiving ITA, you will have 60 days for arranging all necessary documents and proceed for final stage of the application. Upon receiving the invitation, you can easily apply for the permanent residence. You will get all the information you need via the official website of the Canadian government.

Step 10: Medical tests

The last stage involves medical examination. Upon verification of the health status and all documents, you will need to submit passport to the Canadian Embassy or consulate.

Upon approval of the application, you will receive a confirmation of permanent residence (COPR). You will also receive a PR visa if you belong to the country that needs visa for the arrival in Canada. The confirmation document will consist of all the information about you including your photograph. It is important to make sure all the information in the COPR matches exactly with that of the passport. It is advisable to make necessary changes as soon as possible if there are any errors.

Step 11: Interview

The next step after completion of all the process is final interview. You will need to use the COPR before its expiry as the immigration cannot extend the COPR. The process shortens if you are inside Canada. You will just need to go for making an appointment at any of the immigration services offices in Canada. It is also the best option. You also have an option to visit the “port of entry” and provide with all the documents like proof of funds you have to support your family and yourself, the COPR and also the PR visa if you have received one. The interview officer will go through confirmation if all your documents are valid. The officer will also put forward questions to check if you meet all the obligations and terms for immigration to Canada. You will also have to confirm the mailing address in Canada where you can receive your PR card. You will need to inform the authority via web form you are changing the address within the 180 days you receive the status.

If you are yet to arrive Canada, then it is advisable for you to go through various information and prepare yourself for life and future in Canada. You can get information about working and living in Canada. Similarly, you can also browse about getting recognition in Canada with the education and all professional certificates you possess. You can use free pre-arrival services for these purposes. Gathering information on finding jobs and living in Canada is always helpful so that you don’t stumble upon arrival in Canada and struggle for long.

During arrival, make sure you have a regular passport. The immigration doesn’t allow government service, diplomatic or any provisionary passport for permanent residency. You will also need to possess the COPR and the permanent residency visa if you were issues one. You will have to provide with the proof of fund that shows you can support yourself and your family upon arrival in Canada. You will come across an officer. The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer will make sure you comply with all requirements. The officer will check if your COPR is valid and hasn’t expired. The officer may ask you to use the biometrics to check if you are the same person receiving the permanent residency. The officer will check all your travel documents and passport. You will also come across few questions to see if you abide by the immigration terms. The questions are from the pool you filled in during the application. Make sure to be handy with the documents and passport all the times so that entry to Canada happens swiftly.

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