Immigrate to Canada - Become a Permanent Resident
If you want to immigrate to Canada you will most likely acquire permanent residency (PR) status in the process. Being a permanent resident of Canada is not the same as being a Canadian citizen; however, it does empower you to participate in the country in many ways. It is also a stepping stone to eventually becoming a citizen of Canada.
Discover how you can become a permanent resident of Canada below.
What is a Canadian Permanent Resident?
This is someone who was given permanent resident status, because they successfully immigrated to Canada. A permanent resident is not a Canadian citizen, they are still citizens of their origin country.
Let us take a look at the example of Ahmed. He is a national of the United Arab Emirates who decided to pack up his home and move to Canada. In the UAE he was employed as a truck driver. Using his work experience he applied for the Canadian Skilled Worker program and was successful. The province of Manitoba issued him an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence where he now lives and enjoys the great Canadian outdoors.
In the case illustrated above, we can see that Ahmed is a permanent resident of Manitoba, Canada. However, he is still a citizen of the UAE and not of Canada.
How to Apply for Permanent Residency
Ahmed applied for permanent residency through the Skilled Worker program, but there are over 60 different routes to choose from in order to immigrate to Canada. Each of these programs has unique criteria that need to be met for your application to be successful. In general, we have the following broad categories for immigration, however, each of these typically has multiple subcategories and streams to pick from:
- Express Entry (A fast route to Canada with minimum processing times of only six months);
- Provincial Nomination Program (If you have the particular skill set desired by a province);
- Skilled Worker Program; (If you are a skilled worker needed in Canada)
- Family Sponsorship (If you have a family member already living in Canada); and
- Business Immigration (If you would like to start or buy a business)
Choosing the correct program is one of the biggest problems for potential immigrants. With our online evaluation, we can help you narrow down your options by finding the program must suited to your personal needs.
In some cases, like the Provincial Nomination Program, Skilled Worker Program and Express Entry system, you will be issued an Invitation to Apply for permanent residency if your application is successful. You must personally accept this invitation according to a strict deadline (six months if you are using Express Entry) otherwise it will expire.
What is a Permanent Resident Card
Once you acquire PR status you will be issued a Permanent Resident (PR) card. Think of this as your new identity document in Canada. If you want to leave the country and come back, you will need to show proof of your PR card to continue living in the country. If you do not have a card, you can still travel abroad on a permanent resident travel document.
What Are You Allowed to Do as a PR
As a PR you can enjoy many benefits in Canada, such as free public health care coverage. It also allows you to study, live and work anywhere in the country. However, if you acquire your PR status through a Provincial Nomination Program you may have to continue living in a particular province for some time. You will be regulated by the laws of Canada and its Charter of Rights and Freedoms once you acquire permanent residency.
Lastly, and perhaps most excitingly, you can apply for Canadian citizenship. Once you have this status you will be considered a Canadian for all intents and purposes, for instance, it allows you to have the right to vote. There are many requirements you must meet before this can be possible, but they are all reachable if you are aware of them. Some of these include:
- Language skills;
- Length of time you have stayed in the country;
- Canadian general knowledge; and
- PR status
It is not possible to achieve Canadian citizenship without earning permanent residency. For this reason, you should do your best to maintain your status, if you would like to make Canada your permanent home.
Want to know more?
Immigrate to Canada with us and we will be with you every step of the way. Like Ahmed, we will help you choose the correct immigration program for you, in order to maximize your chances of getting an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence. Sign up with us today to get started on your application. We are ready to help you.