Canada is eager for immigrants with skills that are important to the growing economy to take up permanent residence. With a multi-year immigration plan in place that aims to encourage up to a million immigrants from Poland and across the world, there is plenty of scope for Polish nationals and their families to settle in one of the provinces of Canada.
Polish immigrants to Canada make up a small proportion of the overall immigrant population, although there are more than 1 million people across the country with Polish heritage.
The Roncesvalles area of Toronto – the biggest city in the province of Ontario – is home to the largest Polish community in Canada, and holds an annual Polish festival which is the largest such celebration in Canada.
The first step is to fill in the online self-assessment form which will determine the eligibility of the candidate. The following categories are the main pathways to permanent residence.
- Federal Skilled Worker Program
- Provincial Nominee Programs
- Quebec Skilled Worker Program
- Family Class Sponsorship
- Canadian Experience Class
- Investors and Entrepreneurs
Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
Applicants for permanent residence from Poland who have skills, or a profession required in Canada can apply using the FSWP pathway. They must meet the following criteria:
- One year of continuous work experience in a skilled role that is classified under the Canadian National Occupation Classification (NOC) to level 0, A or B.
- Language skills in English or French to Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 across speaking, listening, reading and writing.
- A recognized Canadian certificate, diploma or degree or a foreign qualification and the required Education Credential Assessment (ECA) Report.
The FSWP is one of the application pathways subject to the Express Entry process as described later.
Provincial Nominee Programs (PSP)
Applicants who wish to live and work in a specific province – other than Quebec – may apply through that province’s PSP. Those wishing to settle and work in Quebec must apply to the government of Quebec using the Quebec Skilled Worker Program.
The PSP is a fast-track route to permanent residence and usually takes less time to process than other pathways. The requirements for each province can differ. Immigrants from Poland should identify the province they wish to live and work in and apply for a Provincial Nomination Certificate from the province’s government. If accepted, such candidates gain priority for permanent residence.
Other categories include Family Class, whereby persons already resident in Canada can nominate Polish relatives for permanent residence, and Canadian Experience Class in which the applicant must have worked continuously in full-time employment in Canada or have a current job offer for more than a year in a recognized role.
Polish nationals of high net worth, and entrepreneurs looking at starting a business in Canada, are encouraged to apply using the Investors and Entrepreneurs class pathway.
Express Entry is a fast-track process that applies to applicants from Poland and elsewhere using the Federal Skilled Worker or Trades Program and the Canadian Experience Class entry system. The applicant is required to submit an online profile. This will include details of their age, marital status, work experience, education, and other details. A rank will be determined using the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) with scores attained in the categories mentioned above and more.
Those who score highly on the CRS, which is a pass or fail assessment, will be put into the Express Entry Pool. From the pool, a draw is made regularly and those who are successful are issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA). At this stage, they can begin applying for permanent residence.