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Canadian Immigration Questions and Answers with Attorney David Cohen

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Every month, Attorney David Cohen will answer a few general Canadian immigration questions submitted by our readers. Here are this month’s questions and answers:

What is the difference between ‘intention to refuse’ and ‘intention to reject’?

These two terms are usually used with reference to applications submitted to Immigration Quebec under the Quebec Skilled Worker program. An “intention to reject” is usually issued when the visa office finds that an application along with supporting documents is incomplete or that the documents do not conform to the required format, and therefore the application cannot be processed. An “intention to refuse”, on the other hand, is usually issued when a visa officer decides that an application does not meet the pass mark and is subject to refusal. In both cases, the applicant is given the opportunity to overcome the insufficiency.

I am interested in applying to the Federal Skilled Trades Program. I have heard that you can combine offers of employment in Canada in order to meet eligibility requirements. Can you elaborate on what these offers should look like – full or part time, temporary or permanent, etc?

For a job offer to meet the eligibility requirements of the Federal Skilled Trades Program, it must be for full-time continuous employment over a period of one year from the date the applicant becomes a permanent resident. It is possible for the applicant to have two job offers from two employers totalling one year of employment; however, they must jointly account for one year of continuous full-time work. In addition, the job offer(s) must either be supported by a positive Labour Market Opinion, or the applicant must be working in Canada on a Work Permit, in the same occupation with the same employer, at the time of application and issuance of the permanent residence visa.

My IELTS scores range between 7 and 6 for speaking, reading, writing, and listening. Am I eligible for Canadian immigration through the Federal Skilled Worker Program?

The new regulations for the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) Program impose a Minimum Language Proficiency requirement of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 in all four language skills. At the present time, the Government has not published the IELTS scores that would be considered equivalent to CLB-7 under the new FSW regulations. According to the rules currently applicable to other Federal immigration programs, an IELTS score of 6.0 is equal to CLB-7 for all four language skills. If these current standards are extended to the new FSW program and all four of your IELTS scores are 6.0 or higher, then you would meet the Minimum Language Proficiency requirements. However, you would still need to score at least 67 points, based on all six selection factors, in order to be approved.

Can I pursue a temporary resident visa to Canada while a permanent residency application is already in process? Will there be any negative consequences?

Yes you can. Citizenship and Immigration Canada recognizes the concept of “dual intent”, whereby you have applied for a permanent resident visa but would also like to visit Canada before it is issued.

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