Express Entry to Canada

The Quickest Route to Canadian Permanent Residency

What is Express Entry?

There are many ways for individuals to become Canadian permanent residents. If you a skilled worker looking for the quickest route to permanent residency, then Express Entry is the way to go!

Canada introduced Express Entry in 2015, creating an online based permanent residency system to better streamline Canada’s most popular immigration programs. This is a point-based system, where points are awarded to applicants in different categories, including education, work experience and language skills.

It is important to note that Express Entry is not available to those immigrating to Quebec.

Express Entry Application
Open spousal work permit application

Express Entry Routes

Before getting started, it is important to determine whether you are eligible to apply under one or more of the three programs.

Express Entry is available to those applying under the following 3 immigration programs. Before getting started, it is important to determine whether you are eligible to apply under one or more of the three programs.

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program you must have at least one year of continuous full-time or equivalent paid work experience in the past 10 years. Find out more about the Federal Skilled Worker Program.
  • Federal Skilled Trade Program you must have at least two years of skilled work experience in the last five years. Find out more about the Federal Skilled Trade Program.
  • Canadian Experience Class you must have at least one year of skilled worker experience in the last three years inside Canada. Find out more about the Canadian Experience Class.

How Express Entry Works

Stage 1
Create your Profile

The first step is to create your profile. This step does not require uploading or providing any documents.
To create your profile, you will require the following:

National Occupational Classification (NOC)
The NOC is a specific code assigned to different occupations. Finding the best suited NOC is based on your job duties, and not your job title. When creating your Express Entry profile, you will be asked to assign a specific NOC code to your work experience(s). The three main NOC categories are Type 0 (management), Type A (professional occupations) and Type B (technical occupations).

It is important to choose the NOC closest to your job duties, since you will be required to provide an employment letter which includes the specific NOC duties in Stage 2 of the Express Entry application.

Educational Credential Assessment (ECA)

If you obtained your education anywhere except Canada, you would need to obtain an Educational Credential Assessment. This will assess your foreign education and provide you with the Canadian equivalency.

The most used ECA organization is the World Education Services (WES). There are specific professions, such as physicians, which are required to use a specific organization (ex. Medical Council of Canada).

English and/or French Language Test

You will be required to complete a language skills exam to assess your language ability, in either English or French. The test scores will determine how many points you are awarded and will help you determine which immigration stream you are eligible for.

For English exams, you can sign up with either IELTS (General Training) or CELPIP (General Test).

For French exams, your can sign up with either TEF Canada or TCF Canada.

Submitting your Stage 1 Profile

Before submitting your Express Entry profile, it is important to ensure all the information within the profile is not only accurate but can be supported with documentation.

Once you submit your profile, you will be placed in a pool of candidates. On a bi-weekly basis, invitations are sent out to applicants who meet the minimum point requirement for that specific draw. Each draw has a minimum point requirement. If you received an Invitation to Apply, you will proceed to Stage 2, which will require you to upload documentation in support of your Stage 1 Express Entry profile.

Stage 2
Invitation to Apply – Permanent Residency

After receiving an Invitation to Apply, you will be given 60 days to compile all necessary documentation to support your Express Entry Profile. All supporting documentation will be uploaded to your Express Entry profile. No originals are required.

Examples of Work Experience Documentation

For each work experience claimed in your Express Entry profile, you will need to provide proof of employment throughout the entire period. These include:

  • Pay stubs
  • Taxation documents (ex. T4, Notice of Assessment)
  • Employment Reference Letters.
Examples of Education Documentation
  • Degrees/Diplomas
  • Transcripts
  • Confirmation Letter from School
It is important to demonstrate to the officer that you deserve all the points awarded in your Invitation to Apply.

Submitting your Stage 2 Profile

Government Fees

When all required documents have been uploaded to your Express Entry profile, the last step is to pay the application fees.

As of April 30, 2020, the application fees for Express Entry are as follows:

  • Application fee ($825) and Right of Permanent Residence ($500): Total -$1325
  • Spouse or partner (if any) – $1325
  • Dependent child (if any) – $225 per child
  • Biometrics Fee: $85per person (over 18 years of age)
Processing Time
Once you submit your Stage 2 profile, you will receive a decision in approximately 6 months.
Bridging Open Work Permit

While you are waiting for your Stage 2 – Permanent Residency application, you may be eligible to apply for a bridging open work permit, which will allow you to work in Canada until a decision is received on your application.

Have a Question?

How We Can Help

At Visapath, our representatives help clients become nominated by provinces all over Canada, ensuring they secure their nomination and achieve permanent residency.

Our representatives are up to date with PNP requirements and can help you select the program which best suits your situation. PNP applications can be tiresome and complex. Our representatives are here to alleviate your stress and worries and guide you towards your dream in becoming Canadian permanent residents.

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To get started, call


My thanks to you and your team, Shabnam. My wife and I have just entered Canada and received our documents. I am now a Federal Skilled Worker 😉 We couldn’t have done this without you.

Ernesto D

Hi Shab, just wanted to leave you a quick note to tell you how grateful I am that you assisted me with me experience class application. I never realized how much was involved and it seemed so simple at first glance. If I had submitted the application I put together, for sure it would have been denied. Your expertise made all the difference. Thank you!

Claire G.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does Federal Skilled Workers Program work?

The Federal Skilled Workers program was designed to use work experience from skilled workers to assist them in permanently migrating to Canada. The Federal skilled workers program is under the express entry application, so the candidates looking to receive an invitation through this program must meet the minimum requirements.

These applications are evaluated by factors below:

  • Education level
  • Work experience
  • Age
  • Valid job offer
  • English or French Language Skills
  • Adaptability (settlement traits)

All these factors are assessed on a 100-point grid; this grid is used to determine candidates’ points for how well they score in different sections.

The current pass mark is 67 points.

What if I get refused even though my score is over the pass mark of 67?

There are possibilities in which a candidate may get refused on this program even though they pass the required mark for this program. Immigration Canada does evaluate applicant who are able to demonstrate they can be economically established in Canada. If the immigration officer does not believe you will become economically stable in Canada, they have the right to refuse your application based on what was submitted in the application.

What occupations fall under this category?

Immigration Canada will look at your work experience under the job group of the National Occupational Classification (NOC) Skill Type 0, Level A and Level B.

It is important to show that you are performing the job duties and responsibilities of your primary occupation. Your work experience must be within the last ten years, it has to be paid work, the duties have to match the NOC chosen in your application, and at least one year of continuous work.