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August 20, 2010 8:37 AM   Subscribe

Canadian Immigration Question. How best to assure that I acquire permanent residency in Canada by the time I graduate?

I'm applying as an international student on a study permit for a one year course in BC. Classes start in the Fall 2010. I have a Masters from a school in the US, I worked there for two years subsequently. I am a citizen of neither. I am currently in my home country.

Basically, the company I worked for(in the US) folded and I was thrust into the quagmire that is the US H1B work visa program and had to return to my country. Now that I am going back to school in Canada(and planning on working there for at least a couple of years), I wish to have nary a semblance to the ordeal of the past. Therefore, I am looking at permanent residency as a viable option to rid me of work visa related conundrums.

Since my course is a one year one, I have assumed that I do not qualify under the Canadian Experience Class.

I believe I can get one year of post graduation work permit after I graduate. I am assuming the worst, that no employer will be willing to apply for my work permit. Thus, I hold out little hope for the provincial nominee program as well. Therefore this post graduation work permit, which does not require a job offer and is not subsequently tied to a particular company, is the furthest I am willing to stretch my foreign resident status.

I have taken the online self assessment thing for skilled workers and I score above the requisite 67 points.

What is the most optimum approach I need to take if I want to ensure that I have permanent residency after I graduate, or at most, when my post graduation work permit nears expiry? Do I apply right now, sitting here in my home country? Will I be at any disadvantage if I apply for PR as a student from within Canada? I'll be glad to hear some experiences people have had in this matter.

I will be happy to answer or clarify any points. I'd be greatly obliged to receive any info for a good immigration lawyer as well, if someone has experience with them.

posted by vegetableman to Law & Government (4 answers total)
Well, you have to find a job when you graduate anyway, right? Why not try to find an employer who will sponsor you under the BC Provincial Nominee Program? It's pretty straightforward, and is a pretty fast process.

You can worry about PR cards and immigration status later that way.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:13 AM on August 20, 2010

When you say your BC course is a year, do you really mean a full year, or the eight month academic year? If it's the latter, the current Ministerial Instructions may preclude you from getting PR status unless you have an arranged offer of employment (or you have experience in the listed high-demand occupations).
posted by Clandestine Outlawry at 9:49 AM on August 20, 2010

Yeah, I don't think there's any way you can guarantee a PR right after you graduate. I've been on a work permit for three years now and am just now in the middle stages of getting PR status. If you can get sponsored under a BC or other program, you can likely apply for the Canadian Experience later.

Good luck.
posted by the dief at 10:05 AM on August 20, 2010

Response by poster: It is a full year program, as far as I know. I am pretty sure I will need to find an employer before I get the PR. But that will be when I am under the 'open' post grad work permit and the employer will have to do no paperwork. So that, in theory, I can start working without any PR. But I wouldn't want to rely on my employer to do anything once my post grad work permit runs out.

In this economy, I want to become a very good prospect for the employers and having them not file any paperwork or do the labour market opinion thing is but one part of the process. I will definitely try and exhaust all the nominee options, but if what I have faced in the United States is any indicator, employers will not lift a finger to file any additional paperwork. I wouldn't be surprised if they run for the hills upon hearing the words Work Permit or Provincial Nominee. I am using those as the very last resorts, if all else fails.

the dief, may I ask how long ago you applied for PR. I was under the assumption that the turnaround time for applications is about one year. Thus, if this is the year that I spend on the post grad work permit, then I might be able to get PR status once that expires.
posted by vegetableman at 6:33 AM on August 21, 2010

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