FAQs: Everything You Need to Know About the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot

Are you a skilled foreign worker looking to work in Canada? Canada is constantly looking for skilled immigrants because of factors such as low birth rates, high retirement rates and together this creates a limited number of existing and potential workers.

Canada has over 100 visas and immigration programs available and one of them, in particular, is the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot.

Let’s have a look at everything you need to know about the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot.

What is the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)?

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As a community-driven program, the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) is designed to create a pathway for foreign nationals who are looking to move to Canada. The way the RNIP program is designed, allows the benefits of economic immigration to be spread equally to the smaller communities by having pathways that allow immigrants to live and work in Canada permanently.

This means if you’re successful with your application you will move to Canada as a permanent resident.

What is the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) process?

To apply for permanent residency through the RNIP, you’ll need to go through the four-step application process.

Step 1: Check your eligibility

You’ll need to meet both the IRCC and community-specific requirements. They are as follows:

IRCC Requirements

  • have qualifying work experience or have graduated from a publicly-funded post-secondary;
  • institution in the recommending community;
  • meet or exceed the language requirements;
  • prove you have enough money to support your transition into the community;
  • intend to live in the community;
  • meet community-specific requirements;

Each participating community has their own requirements that will need to be fulfilled by applicants. If you’re able to meet all of these requirements, only then can you look for an eligible job within the communities.

Step 2: Find an eligible job

What is an eligible job in the RNIP?

You’ll need to have a genuine offer of employment. A genuine offer refers to the following:

  1. your job offer must meet the needs of the employer;
  2. your employer must actively be in the business for which the offer has been made;
  3. the employer must be able to fulfill the terms of the offer; and
  4. the employer must have complied with all employment laws and rules in the past.

Beyond these job requirements, your job offer will also need to be full-time, non-seasonal, permanent and must meet or exceed the Job Bank’s minimum wage for the particular position’s National Occupational Classification (NOC).

Your job offer must match your work experience either one level up or one level down. However, there is an exception. If your NOC is skill level D, then your job offer must be in the same occupation.

Step 3: Submit your application for recommendation to a participating community

For the recommendation process, each participating community has their own. To find out exactly what you’ll need to do you’ll need to visit their individual websites. These websites will inform you of the following information:

  • how the application process works; and
  • what documents you’ll need to apply.

You’ll also be asked to provide additional supporting documents. It’s good to know that you shouldn’t submit your original documents for this as you’ll need your original documents when you apply for Canadian permanent residency.

Step 4: Apply for permanent residence.

Lastly, if you are successful then you can apply for permanent residency. Each applicant's process may be slightly different depending on their country of origin. You may also be required to give your biometrics, this will cost $85 per person.

Paperwork that will need to be completed are as follows:

Forms for your employer to fill and pass over to you to submit with your application after signing:

  • Offer of Employment to a Foreign National – RNIP IMM 5984.

Forms for the Economic Development Organization of the particular community

  • Recommendation from the designated Economic Development Organization – RNIP IMM 0112

Forms for you as the applicant:

  • IMM 008; IMM 5669; IMM 5884; IMM 5911; IMM 5406; IMM 5562; IMM 5604; IMM 5409; IMM 5476.

Who are the RNIP participating communities?

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There are currently 11 communities that are operating within the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot program. They are:

  1. North Bay, ON - https://northbayrnip.ca/
  2. Sudbury, ON - https://investsudbury.ca/why-sudbury/move-to-sudbury/rnip/
  3. Timmins, ON - www.timminsedc.com
  4. Sault Ste. Marie, ON - www.welcometossm.com
  5. Thunder Bay, ON - https://gotothunderbay.ca/
  6. Brandon, MB - www.economicdevelopmentbrandon.com
  7. Altona/Rhineland, MB - www.seedrgpa.com
  8. Moose Jaw, SK - https://www.moosejawrnip.ca/
  9. Claresholm, AB - www.claresholm.ca
  10. Vernon, BC - https://rnip-vernon-northok.ca/
  11. West Kootenay (Trail, Castlegar, Rossland, Nelson), BC - https://wk-rnip.ca/

How long does it take to process an RNIP application?

The average processing time for permanent residency applications under the RNIP is between 12 to 18 months long.

What are the in-demand jobs within the participating communities?

Below are the top in-demand jobs for British Columbia and Ontario, as they have the most participating communities.

British Columbia in-demand jobs:

  • Payroll Administrators (NOC 1432)
  • Computer Programmers And Interactive Media Developers (NOC 2174)/li>
  • Elementary and Secondary School Teacher Assistants (NOC 4413)
  • Material Handlers (NOC 7452)
  • Transport Truck Drivers (NOC 7511)
  • Cooks (NOC 6322)

Ontario in-demand jobs:

  • Nurse (NOC 3012)
  • Accountant (NOC 1111)
  • Software Engineer (NOC 2173)
  • Material Engineer (NOC 2142
  • Welder (NOC 7327)
  • General Labourer (NOC 7611)

Do I need to get a work permit?

A work permit in this case is optional. For applicants who have applied for permanent residence through the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot, they may also be eligible for a one-year Canadian work permit.

This permit will allow you to work for a period of one year while your application for permanent residency is being processed. You’ll need to qualify for the following in order to apply for the work visa:

  • have an eligible offer of employment from your employer
  • have a recommendation from a participating community
  • have a recommendation from a participating community
  • have received an acknowledgement of receipt letter from the IRCC

Good to know!

The work permit is only for applicants of the RNIP program and only allows you to work for the employer who offered you the job within the eligible communities. This means that you can’t switch employers during the one-year period.

One of the best benefits of the RNIP is that your partner can also apply for an open work permit at the same time you apply for your work permit.

Why You Should Move to Canada?

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No matter where in the world you come from, it’s almost certain that you’ll find a place you can call home in Canada. This is due to the fact that this country is one of the most diverse countries in the world and in fact celebrates that.

Beyond the welcoming communities, Canada also has an ever-growing job market that is constantly seeking immigrants in order to fill the roles. This is because of Canada’s low birth rate and high retirement rate.

By learning everything you need to know about the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot, you too can find yourself and your family living in the Great White North.

Don’t wait too long to see if you’re eligible as the RNIP is set to close by December 2022.