Express Entry: CRS drops 2 points from previous all-program draw

Alexandra Miekus, Shelby Thevenot, Mohanad Moetaz, Noah Turner
Published: August 5, 2020

Canada has held another all-program draw, inviting Express Entry candidates to apply for permanent residence.

Canada issued 3,900 Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for permanent residence in a draw held August 5. Candidates needed a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of at least 476 to be invited in this invitation round.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has been issuing 3,900 ITAs through Express Entry every two weeks for most of 2020. While IRCC deviated from all-program draws between March 18 and July 8 and was targeting candidates in only two specific programs during that period, that changed last month. On July 8, IRCC held an all-program draw before returning again to program-specific draws on July 22 and July 23, suggesting it may start to alternate between these two types of draws as things slowly return to normal.

The number of ITAs issued in 2020 was not affected by the temporary policy changes and remained constant throughout the year. The year began with two draws of 3,400 ITAs each in January, followed by one draw of 3,500 ITAs and a record-breaking 4, 500 in February. Since March, IRCC held 21 draws and issued close to 40,000 ITAs.

Express Entry is the application system that manages the pool of candidates for Canada’s three main economic immigration classes — the Federal Skilled Worker Program(FSWP), the Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC)  and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC).

The highest-ranked candidates in the Express Entry pool are issued ITAs in regular invitation rounds.

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Today's draw was the 25th draw of 2020 and brings the total number of ITAs issued this year to 61,600, a new record for this date.

Today’s minimum score of 476 was two points lower than the previous all-program invitation round on July 8, which had a cut-off score of 478.

The higher CRS cut-off is a function of FSWP candidates once again securing ITAs. Today included ITAs sent out to candidates with higher CRS scores who would have otherwise been invited in earlier months had the coronavirus pandemic not affected IRCC's Express Entry policies.

The time between draws is an important factor that can have an effect on the CRS cut-off score. Larger intervals between draws mean more candidates have time to enter a profile in the Express Entry pool.

IRCC used its tie-break rule in today’s draw. The timestamp used was Jully 27, at 01:02:47 UTC. This means that all candidates with a CRS score above 476, as well as those candidates with scores of 476 who entered their profile in the Express Entry pool before the selected date and time, received an ITA in this invitation round.

The tie-break rule is used to rank candidates who have the same CRS score. A candidate’s CRS score remains the primary factor in selecting candidates to be invited to apply for permanent residence.

Eligible candidates for each program are issued a score under Express Entry’s CRS, which awards points for factors such as age, education, skilled work experience and proficiency in English or French.

While a job offer is not required in order to be eligible under the Express Entry system, the CRS does award additional points to candidates who have one.

A set number of the highest-scoring candidates are issued an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence through regular draws from the pool, which typically take place every two weeks.

The Government of Canada has a processing standard of six months for permanent residence applications filed through the Express Entry system.

Who is invited?

The following are hypotetical scenarios of candidates who could have been invited in today's Express Entry draw.

Diya and Suresh and married and are 29 and 35 respectively. They each wrote the IELTS and scored an 8 in listening and reading, a 7.5 in writing and a 7 in speaking. Diya holds a master's degree and has been working as an accountant for three years. Suresh holds a bachelor’s degree and has been working as a programmer for six years.  Neither Diya nor Suresh has ever worked or studied in Canada. They entered the Express pool with Diya as the principal applicant. Diya’s CRS score of 476 would have been high enough to obtain an ITA during the August 5 Express Entry draw.

Kitana is 30 years old and was been working as a financial manager for three years. She holds a bachelor's degree and has an advanced English language proficiency as well as an intermediate French language proficiency. While Kitana has never worked or studied in Canada, her CRS score of 478 would have been high enough to obtain an ITA during the August 5 Express Entry draw.

Find out if you are eligible for any Canadian immigration programs

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