A Permanent Resident Card (PRC) is automatically issued to all persons who become “landed immigrants” in Canada. It is proof that the immigrant has the legal right to live, work and study in Canada without limitation. Several ways to obtain permanent residence at the moment are:
Federal Skilled Workers Class
Skilled workers and professionals may qualify for permanent residency, if they have experience in a skilled occupation as listed by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Applicants must meet the passmark in a points-based system that is based on selection factors such as age, education, skilled work experience and proficiency in one of Canada’s official languages. Qualified applicants must enter the ‘Express Entry’ pool which will then automatically place the candidate in Comprehensive Ranking System via a new points system allowing IRCC to compare and rank applications from several streams. IRCC will then periodically select the candidates with the highest number of points, and send them an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residency. Candidates with an approved job offer will obtain extra points. Those with a Provincial Nomination will have more than sufficient points to receive an ITA.
Provincial Nomination Program (PNP)
The Canadian provinces and territories have their own selection programs for independent immigrants. The criteria for the PNP differ greatly per province or territory. Those who meet the conditions of a province or territory and can prove that they intend to live there can be nominated by that province for permanent residence. The province of Québec has its own independent selection system (Certificat de Sélection du Québec – CSQ). Once a PNP application is approved by a province or territory, the applicant will be asked to submit it to IRCC via the Express Entry pool. Candidates with an approved PNP will have more than sufficient points to qualify. In some cases PNP nominations can be submitted outside the Express Entry System.
This category is for farmers, self-employed persons who work in cultural activities and athletes. The applicant must have two years of relevant, self-employed experience in one of these areas in the five years immediately before applying. Since early 2017 the stream for farmers has been suspended. Most farmers, however ,will still be able to qualify for permanent residence via a Provincial Nomination.
Spouses and common-law partners of Canadian citizens or permanent residents as well as their children under 22 may qualify for immigration to Canada. The family member in Canada will have to sponsor the applicant and a joint application will have to be submitted to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
Canadian Experience Class
This category is for temporary foreign workers with at least one year of full-time (or equivalent) recent skilled work experience in Canada. Applications are also submitted via Express Entry.