Federal Skilled Trades Program

As of January 1, 2015, the Federal Skilled Trades program is now managed under the new expedited electronic management system called Express Entry.  The key change from before January 1, 2015 you must create a profile in Step 1 of the Express Entry process, and be ranked according to your personal qualifications.  Based on this ranking (out of a maximum 1,200 points), Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) will make regular draws and send invitations to apply for permanent residence, to the highest ranked and most qualified candidates from the Express Entry profile pool.  Step 2 is to submit your application and supporting documentation to CIC for the permanent residence approval process, with the goal of approvals in less than 6 months, based on verifying your qualifications and meeting other security, medical and admissibility criteria.

Three federal skilled worker/trade immigration programs are now managed under this new Express Entry system, with plans to expand further.  With the new Comprehensive Ranking System scoring system, it has become more challenging to successfully apply for permanent residency status in Canada; however, the benefits are: once invited to apply, the process should take less than 6 months to complete, and; there are no more caps or quotas for programs currently managed under this new electronic and expedited system.

Fortunately for prospective applicants, there is a continued need for federal skilled trades workers in Canada, and jobs are available almost on-demand, within in-demand industries and urban centres the country.

The minimum requirements to be eligible include:

  • Have at least two years of full-time (or an equal amount of part-time) work experience in a skilled trade within the five years before you apply;
  • Meet the job requirements for that skilled trade as set out in the National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill type B except for needing a certificate of qualification;
  • Meet the required language proficiency levels in English or French for each language ability (speaking, reading, writing, listening);
  • Have an offer of full-time employment for a total period of at least one year, OR
  • A certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial or territorial authority;
  • You must be admissible to Canada;
  • You must plan to live outside the province of Quebec.

The Skilled Trades currently eligible for the Federal Skilled Trades Program are organized under these major and minor groups of the NOC:

  • Major Group 72: industrial, electrical and construction trades;
  • Major Group 73: maintenance and equipment operation trades;
  • Major Group 82: supervisors and technical jobs in natural resources, agriculture and related production;
  • Major Group 92: processing, manufacturing and utilities supervisors and central control operators;
  • Minor Group 632: chefs and cooks, and;
  • Minor Group 633: butchers and bakers.

Speak to an immigration professional at Mamann, Sandaluk & Kingwell LLP to schedule a consultation about whether you qualify to apply for permanent residency under the Federal Skilled Trades program.

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