Changes Coming to Federal Skilled Workers and Canadian Experience Class

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In January 2013, Citizenship and Immigration Canada will implement changes to the Federal Skilled Workers Program and Canadian Experience Class, as well as add a new stream called Federal Skilled Trades Class.  Here is a summary of the expected changes:


Federal Skilled Workers Program

Changes to Point System: The six selection factors and minimum required points (67/100) will remain the same, but the number of points given and how they are given will change.


Factor 1: Language Requirements – Maximum 24 Points

The Language levels are set using the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) or Niveau de compétence linguistique canadien (NCLC). There will be a new minimum mandatory of CLB/NCLC 7, which is considered an “adequate intermediate proficiency.” Applicants must obtain a minimum of 7 CLB/NCLC in all four language abilities (speaking, oral comprehension, reading and writing) for the first official language. To get points for the second official language, applicants must receive a minimum of 5 CLB/NCLC in all four abilities. The Minister has the discretion to reduce or increase this minimum mandatory level.

1st Official Language


Minimum CLB/NCLC


6 points per ability



5 points per ability



4 points per ability


2nd Official Language

Maximum 4 points



Factor 2: Education – Maximum 25 points





Masters or Professional Degree


Two or more post-secondary credentials (one of which is a 3-year or longer credential)


3-year or longer post-secondary credential


2 –year post-secondary credential


1-year post-secondary credential


Secondary School



Factor 3: Age – Maximum 12 points



18 to 35 years


36 years


37 years


Over 37 years

Less one point per year

46 years


47 years or over



Factor 4: Work Experience – Maximum 15 points

Work Experience


1 year


2 to 3 years


4 to 5 years


6 plus years



Factor 5: Arrange Employment – Total 10 points

To receive 10 points for arranged employment, applicants must have a indeterminate job offer and a Labour Market Opinion (unless exempt from needing a Labour Market Opinion).


Factor 6: Adaptability – Maximum 10 points



Applicant’s previous skilled work in Canada for minimum 1 year


Applicant’s previous study in Canada


Accompanying Spouse/Partner’s previous study in Canada


Accompanying Spouse/Partner’s previous work in Canada


Arranged Employment


Relative in Canada (18 years or over)


Accompanying Spouse/Partner’s official language (CLB/NCLC 4)



Federal Skilled Trades Class

Federal Skilled Trades Class will be available to specific trades people that fall under the National Occupation Classification List (NOC) skilled level B. Trades will include industrial, electrical and construction; maintenance and equipment operation; supervisors and technical occupations in natural resources, agriculture and related production; processing, manufacturing and utilities supervisors and central control operators; and chefs, cooks, bakers and butchers.


  1. Applicant is either working in Canada OR has up to 2 valid job offers, OR has a certificate of qualification from a Canadian trades authority
  2. Meets the minimum language level requirements
  3. Has 24 months of work experience in the same occupation in the last 5 years
  4. Has the qualifications to satisify the employment requirements set out by the NOC trade description and requirements


Canadian Experience Class

The Canadian work experience requirement will be reduced from 24 months to 12 months for Skilled Workers that have experience in NOC 0,A or B. Skilled workers that have gained 12 months of skilled work experience in the 36 months prior to submitting their application can apply.

A minimum language requirement will remain, and will be set at CLB/NCLC 7 for NOC 0, A and CLB/NCLC 5 in each ability for NOC B applicants.


For more information, visit: Canada Gazette

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Conditional Permanent Residency for Sponsored Spouses

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Citizenship and Immigration Canada introduced a new regulation, effective October 25th 2012, for spousal sponsorship applications that are received on or after this date. The regulation puts a two year conditional permanent residence period on specific sponsored spouses or partners. It applies to spouses or partners that are in a relationship for less than 2 years and with no children together at the time they submit their spousal sponsorship application. The sponsored spouse or partner’s permanent residency status can be revoked if the relationship does not continue within that 2 year period.

There are exceptions. The conditional permanent residence does not apply where there is evidence of abuse or neglect, either by the sponsor or relatives of the sponsor, or in the event of the sponsor’s death.

Furthermore, the conditional permanent residence is no different than regular permanent residence, expect for the 2 year requirement to remain in a legitimate, cohabiting relationship. The sponsored spouse or partner may have accompanying family members or can still sponsor other family members, but those family members’ permanent residence will also be contingent on the sponsored spouse meeting the 2 year condition.

This is the second effort this year by Citizenship and Immigration Canada to deter marriage fraud for the purpose of acquiring permanent residency. In March, 2012, the government announced a ban on sponsored spouses from sponsoring a new spouse for five years after the date they received permanent residency.

In August this year, the RCMP laid charges on 39 people for their involvement in an alleged marriage scam. Women in Montreal were recruited to marry North African men whose temporary status in Canada was soon to expire. Source: RCMP News Release

For more information, visit see Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s October 26th New Release.



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