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FAQs

Canada Immigration

What is the purpose of Canada Immigration Info?

Our aim is to assist you with all of your government applications. Government application forms are notoriously complicated. Our downloadable kits for skilled worker class immigration or for a Canadian passport application help you to complete these applications by yourself without making costly mistakes, which delay the processing of your application. Our service saves you money by avoiding the high charges incurred through hiring an immigration lawyer and we help you to avoid additional costs incurred through a delayed application. The kits on this website include up-to-date information on eligibility, instructions on how to complete applications, what documents to include with your application, and sample completed applications. The kits vary on topics from Canadian immigration to Canadian birth certificates. Please scroll down the left menu bar to find the kit most relevant to your personal situation.

Who can qualify for Canada immigration?
Thousands of new immigrants come to Canada each year under many different visa classes. The main categories of immigration are skilled worker, family class sponsorship, and the new Canadian Experience class. Each category has its own set of criteria for qualification. For example, the skilled worker visa is a category in which independent immigrants are accepted for permanent residency in Canada depending on the number of points they score in education, language proficiency, employment experience, age and adaptability. The family sponsorship visa enables a Canadian citizen or permanent resident to apply for a visa for a non-resident family member to come and live in Canada. The criteria for qualification often depend on the country of residence for the person being sponsored. You must meet each of the qualifying standards set out for each class of immigration in order to be considered for a Canadian visa.

Is it possible for me to come into Canada temporarily before I apply for Canadian immigration?
Yes. Many people visit Canada to see the beauty of the country. You can apply for a visitor's visa or work here temporarily with a work permit. In order to be approved for a temporary visit to Canada, you must prove to the interviewing officer that your stay will be short-term and that you will leave Canada once your visa expires. Strong ties to your country of origin like a job, property or family will help you to prove this.

Permanent Residence

What is considered to be permanent residence?
Different countries have different criteria for what is considered permanent residency. In Canada, if a person successfully applies for immigration under the skilled worker category, or was sponsored, then s/he is a permanent resident from the first day s/he enters the country. Generally, a permanent resident is someone who is not a Canadian citizen and who has been granted permission to live and work in Canada without any time limit on his or her stay. A permanent resident must live in Canada for two years out of every five in order to keep their permanent status. A permanent resident holds many of the same rights and responsibilities as a Canadian citizen, however permanent residents cannot vote in elections, run for elected office, hold Canadian passports, or work in government jobs.

People residing in Canada on a temporary basis, for example under the study permit, work permit, or temporary resident visa, are not considered to be permanent residents of Canada. These people must apply for permanent residency.

Does permanent residence affect my travel outside of Canada?
A permanent resident of Canada can travel outside of the country however, since 2002, all Canadian permanent residents are required to present a valid Permanent Resident Card to border officers before boarding any flight, bus, boat or train and to an immigration officer when entering Canada.

When does permanent residence become citizenship?
A permanent resident may apply for Canadian citizenship once they have lived in Canada for at least three out of the past four years. Some benefits of being a Canadian citizen are obtaining a Canadian passport, and having the right to vote in elections and be more involved in the political process. As a permanent resident you have to remain in Canada for certain time periods and keep renewing your status, once you become a Canadian citizen you can leave the country and do not have to worry about renewing your status.

Canadian citizens

What are the rights and benefits of Canadian citizens?
The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom ensures that all people residing in Canada have the freedom of conscience and religion, thought, belief, opinion and expression as well as the freedom of peaceful assembly and of association. Canadian citizens are given the right to vote in elections, and to stand as candidates or for government office. Citizens have the right to enter, remain in, or leave Canada as they so desire. Canadian citizens are also given the right to hold a Canadian passport, which ensures their entry into many countries without obtaining a visa.

Is there any other document other than the citizenship certificate that shows that I am a Canadian citizen?
Other than obtaining a citizenship card or certificate, a person can apply for their Canadian birth certificate as proof of Canadian citizenship. A Canadian passport also confirms your right to citizenship. Proof of Canadian citizenship is most important when traveling outside of Canada, however, some government programs also require proof of citizenship.

Can Canadian citizens hold dual citizenship in another country?
Yes. Canada allows people to hold citizenship to another country however there are some countries that do not recognize dual nationality. You must find out if you will lose your nationality to your original country before applying for Canadian citizenship. If your country of citizenship does not recognize dual nationality, you do not have to apply for Canadian citizenship because you can live in Canada as a permanent resident providing you renew your status periodically.

How do I obtain Canadian Citizenship?
You are eligible to apply for Canadian citizenship if you are a permanent resident of Canada and have lived in Canada for three out of five years. You must submit a citizenship application. Once approved, you will be invited to take a citizenship test. Once you pass the test, you will attend a citizenship ceremony where a judge will proclaim you as a Canadian citizen. The whole process usually takes less than one year to complete.

Visas


Do I need a visa to come to Canada?
Depending on which country you belong to, you may need a visa prior to traveling to Canada. For example, if you are a citizen of the United States, you can obtain a visa at the Canadian port of entry. Some country nationals are required to obtain a visa before they begin their journey to Canada. Canada offers many types of visas. There are study permits for people looking to attend school in Canada, work permits for those who want a job and temporary resident visas for people wishing to tour Canada or visit family and friends.

Do Canadian citizens need a visa to travel to the US?
Canadian citizens are usually given a visa to the United States at the port of entry. However, it is recommended that people who want to invest or trade in America consult with the consulate before traveling and consider obtaining an E visa. If you are a permanent resident of Canada and need to travel to the US you may need a visa unless you are a citizen from those countries who participate in the US visa waiver program. Nationals of countries that are not included in the visa waiver program must apply for a US visa appointment to obtain their visa.

Am I allowed to work in Canada if I am here on a temporary resident visa?
Once in Canada, you must obey the rules stipulated on your visa, which means that you cannot work in Canada unless you have a work permit.

Passports

What is a passport used for?
A passport is your key to travel between countries. Without one, you cannot travel outside of your home country. Different countries have different regulations regarding the issue of passports. For example, having a Canadian passport will allow you access to hundreds of countries without obtaining a visa first. Some national passports will only allow you access to limited countries without a visa. Put simply, your passport is your international identity document that states your nationality, name, date of birth etc and provides you with the freedom to travel abroad.

Are some passports better to have than others?
Different countries have different rules and agreements with each other. The benefits that come with each country's passport are based on the rules that govern that country's immigration policies. There is no such thing as a "better" passport. Some passports give you greater access to other countries. Some passports are banned outright from certain countries; for example, a Pakistani passport is valid in all countries except Israel whereas with a UK passport, you are free to tour any country in the world.

Can I travel to Canada with a US passport?
Yes. Furthermore, you do not need to obtain a visa prior to traveling. Recent regulations stipulate that only persons with a valid passport may travel between Canada and the US. Prior to 2008, you were able to travel across the border with just a birth certificate and a valid photo ID.


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