Sun | Jan 20, 2019

Immigration Corner: How do I get express entry?

Published:Tuesday | March 10, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Dear Ms Powell,

I'm thinking of applying under the express entry programme, but I don't know if I would qualify. I understood the selection process under the skilled worker programme, but I'm now a little confused about this new programme. I'm 28 years old, married to another professional, and we both have bachelor's degrees from the University of the West Indies. Would I qualify? How much points would I get? Can you tell me how they are now selecting persons to go to Canada?

- P.A.


Dear PA,

The express entry system is not a new programme. It is an electronic system to manage the existing economic programmes, that is, the Federal Skilled Worker Programme (FSW) the Federal Skilled Trade Programme (FST), The Canadian Experience Class (CEC), and some of the Provincial Nominee Programmes (PNP).

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has introduced a new way of awarding points to individuals. Under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), individuals are awarded points based on core human capital, skill transferability, and whether there is a valid job offer from a Canadian employer or a provincial nomination from a province or territory. An individual can get a maximum of 1,200 points based on these core factors.


Core human capital


These factors are not so different from the previous point system under the old FSW. CIC will still be awarding points based on the factors which they believe will help to determine how successful an applicant will be at integrating, and whether they will become economically successful and productive in the Canadian society.

Individuals can get up to 460 points based on their age, education, language proficiency, work experience and skill. An extra 40 points can be had based on spouse or common-law status. An individual can also get up to another 100 points based on their skill transferability. That is, a maximum of 600 points under this factor.


Job offer or Provincial Nomination


CIC will also award an additional 600 points if an individual has a valid job offer/arranged employment or a nomination by a Canadian province or territory.


Draws and CRS


Since January 2015, CIC has already made its fourth draw from the pool of express entry. Individuals with a CRS of 735 or more points have received an invitation to apply. They now have 60 days to submit the final set of documents and information, in order to get permanent residence in six months or less.

The trend shows that CIC is selecting more candidates based on lower CRS scores. This is positive news for individuals who do not have job offers or nominations, as once the pool has been cleared of these applicants, CIC will start choosing individuals who have scored highly, based on core human capital factors only.

If you are between the age of 20 and 29 and married, you will receive a score of 110 points under the age factor. That is the highest point you can get under the age category. Since both you and your spouse have bachelor's degrees, you would score another 128 points. If you have a professional degree or master's degree, you will receive 135 points for your level of education.

In order to accurately calculate your additional CRS points, I would need to know more about both you and your spouse. I will need to know your IELTS, English General training examination results, number of years of work experience, whether or not the work experience was in Canada, and other factors. If you are interested in a full assessment of your eligibility, you may visit to complete the free online assessment. You will be asked a series of question to be able to calculate your personal CRS score.

- Deidre S. Powell is a lawyer, mediator, and notary public who is a member of the Jamaican and Ontario, Canada bars, with office located in Ottawa, Ontario. Her areas of practice are in immigration, real estate, commercial, personal injury, family and administration of estates. She is on the roster of Mediators for Ottawa, Toronto, and the Dispute Resolution Foundation of Jamaica. Email: subjectline: immigration. Call 613.695.8777/ 876.922.8899