Ontario Provincial Nomination Program (PNP)

Ontario is the province of choice for most people applying under a Federal Canadian Immigration Program. The province of Ontario also has programs for those individuals who have some connection to Ontario, for example a job offer or who have gone to school in Ontario. As is the case with all provincial nomination programs, first the province nominates an individual for Canada permanent residency and then Canadian immigration actually issues the visa.

The Ontario Provincial Program has a target of 2,500 provincial nominees for all streams of the program for the 2014 year.  This is a significant increase over 2013’s target of 1,300 nominations.

The program is divided into three categories: a general category for foreign workers, an international student category, and an investor category.

General Category

Foreign workers may obtain Canada permanent residency under this Ontario PNP category, if there is an employer based in Ontario who offers them a job.  First the employer must apply for approval, and then the prospective employee will apply with the approved position.

Both the Ontario employer and foreign worker have to fulfill the following criteria:

Ontario PNP Employer’s Criteria:

NOTE: Employers are able to request more than one position under the PNP, and the maximum number that can be requested is 20.  The number of positions that an employer is able to request depends on the number of full time permanent employees at the company.

• Existed and operated as a business for at least three years before the date of application

• Declared a minimum of $1,000,000 gross revenue for last fiscal year.  For companies in the Greater Toronto Area, the minimum amount is $500,000.

• A minimum of 5 full time permanent employees on the payroll.  For companies in the Greater Toronto Area, there must instead be a minimum of 3 permanent full time employees.

• A location/office in Ontario

Ontario PNP Foreign Worker’s Criteria

Foreign workers cannot apply for this program until their position with their employer has already been approved.  Foreign workers must have the following to qualify under this program:

• An offer of permanent full-time employment from an employer in Ontario in a skilled position approved by the province at a wage consistent with the average for the position and the location.

• A minimum of two years of work experience in the five years prior to the application date, and if necessary, the relevant registration to practice their occupation.

• An “Approved Position Form” and a a Joint Verification form, which have been submitted by the employer in a pre-screening process, and the approval letter that was granted to the employer.

• Valid immigration status in Canada if the applicant is already living in Canada (such as a valid work permit or a temporary resident visa).

Ontario PNP International Student Category

To be eligible to apply for permanent residency in Ontario as an international student with a job offer, the employer who is offering you a full time job must have first applied for the approval of your position.

Ontario PNP Job Offer Stream

This program is for individuals who have graduated from any Canadian university or college, which is publicly funded, within the last two years.  Individuals can also apply during their studies so long as they have completed at least half of their studies in Canada.  The duration of the program of study in Canada must be at least two years, unless it is a graduate degree program.

International students are not required to have any previous work experience.

The requirements are:

An offer of full-time employment from an employer in Ontario in a skilled position at a wage consistent with the average for the position in the location.  The position must be a managerial, professional, or skill trade occupation (classified as NOC Type 0, A or B) to be eligible.

• An “Approved Position Form” and the Joint Verification form which has been submitted by the employer in a pre-screening process

• Valid immigration status in Canada if the applicant is already living in Canada (such as your valid study permit).

Ontario PNP PhD/Masters Graduate Stream

Anyone who has graduated from a PhD or Masters program from an Ontario university receiving public funding, qualifies for this program without a job offer.

Ontario PNP Individual Investor Program

This program is designed for individuals who are investing, or setting up a company, in Ontario, which they will be actively managing. The primary function of the business cannot be a passive investment aimed at deriving interest, dividends or capital gains. The individual does not have to meet a minimum net worth requirement but must meet the following eligibility criteria:

• Create a minimum of 5 new permanent full-time positions for Canadians

• Have control over a minimum of 1/3 of the equity invested or make a minimum investment of $3,000,000 in the business venture, which cannot be redeemed at a specified time.

• The investment must be officially approved or endorsed by a Deputy Minister of an Ontario Ministry to very the amount of the investment and the job creation.

FWCanada is a Montreal-based immigration law firm that provides professional legal services on Canadian immigration. For more tips and updates on Canadian immigration follow FWCanada on FacebookTwitter, and Linkedin.