Best Ways to Stay in Canada even if your PGWP Expires!
If you are worried about staying in Canada after the expiration of your PGWP, then here is the good news! Multiple options are available for you to continue your stay in Canada even after your PGWP expires.
But before jumping to the various options, let us first see the functions of PGWP.
What is a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)?
Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) is basically an open work permit with a validity of a maximum of 3 years. It is usually given to foreign students who wish to graduate from the Canadian study program. During your course duration, PGWP grants you permission to work in Canada for any employer.
However, the validity of PGWP depends on the duration of the study program. So, if your course is for 2 years, then PGWP will also be valid for those 2 years only.
What options can be availed to stay in Canada beyond PGWP?
There are several options that can be opted to stay in Canada beyond PGWP. To know more about the options, read the article to find out which one best suits your purpose and goals.
Apply to Immigration Programs
Applying to various immigration programs will enable you to get access to Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP). Having BOWP will let you enjoy the freedom of working in Canada despite the expired PGWP. It allows the immigrants to work until their application to permanent residence is approved.
1. Express Entry
Express Entry is often misunderstood as a part of an immigration program. But the truth is, it serves as an application management system to three prominent federal immigration programs and a few PNPs. Programs that fall under Express Entry are:
Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
If you are not a resident of Canada, nor a skilled trades professional, then FSWP is the perfect way out for you. To get through the application process, candidates need to fulfill the eligibility criteria. This includes work experience in a skilled occupation, language proficiency as per Canadian benchmark, and educational qualification. Most importantly, scoring 67 out of 100 in FSWP grip is mandatory to qualify for the same.
Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
CEC aims to encourage foreign students and immigrants to secure their future in Canada. Moreover, candidates who qualify through CEC do not require to produce settlement funds to the IRCC to prove their financial stability.
Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
FSTP is a major pathway to welcome skilled trades professionals to Canada to meet the labor crisis. Under Express Entry, immigrants with successful FSTP gain permanent residence within a span of just six months.
To opt for Express Entry as your immigration process, being eligible for at least one of the three programs is compulsory. You will be given a score on the basis of the Comprehensive Ranking System. Once Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) grant you the “Invitation to Apply” (ITA), you can proceed further with the application.
Related read- Who Can Apply for Employer Specific Work permit without leaving Canada
2. Provincial Nominee Program
Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) is one of the leading pathways when it comes to immigrating to Canada. PNP is operated by almost every province and territory to encourage foreign skilled workers to join the Canadian firms and improve their economy.
PNP is further categorized into Enhanced PNP. Provincial nominations that are sanctioned by Express Entry fall under this “Enhanced Nomination”. The advantage of enhanced PNP is that they award an extra 600 Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points to the Express Entry candidates. These additional points make their permanent residence process much faster and provide approval within 6 months.
Apart from this procedure, you can also go for “Base PNP” to obtain permanent residence. All you need to do is to directly apply to Base PNP and wait to receive the provincial nomination. Your application will come under process once you get the nomination.
3. Atlantic Immigration Pilot
The Atlantic Immigration Pilot is another form of immigration program suitable for immigrants looking for jobs in Canada. Employers in Canada’s four Atlantic provinces use this conveniently to recruit expert foreign immigrants to fill in the job vacancies.
After selection, you will be required to work in any of these four Atlantic provinces- ova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador, and New Brunswick. This employer-driven program is divided into three streams based on the type of workers. These are for skilled workers, intermediate skilled workers, and graduates of Atlantic province.
4. Quebec immigration
The immigration process of Quebec is somewhat different from others. It demands Quebec Selection Certificate (CSQ) as a supporting document for your immigration application. Unlike other provinces, permanent residence status in Quebec can only be granted by the federal government.
Quebec PGWP holders can also acquire Quebec Experience Program (PEQ). The only criteria it involves is that you have to be proficient in speaking French and have worked in Quebec. Moreover, this same criteria also prevail for Quebec Skilled Worker Program (QSWP), if you opt for this specific immigration program.
5. Family Sponsorship
The immigration process becomes quite easy if your spouse or civil partner happens to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident. By availing of Spousal Sponsorship, you can also benefit from an Open Work Permit, specially designed for non-Canadian partners.
A temporary Residence is Always an Option!
Now, suppose these options didn’t sit well with you. Then what? Will you be not able to stay in Canada any longer?
The answer is: Yes, you can still stay! There are several other work permits that give the provision of extending your Canada stay.
Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)
To extend your stay in Canada, all you need to have is a work permit. To get this, your employer needs to submit the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). Unlike others, LMIA is chargeable and takes a longer duration than usual.
But if you feel that your talent and your social presence are going to be an asset to Canada, then don’t hesitate from applying under International Mobility Program. This program is specifically designed to promote the socio-cultural and economic objectives of Canada. Talents who are recognized under this program are actors, politicians, entrepreneurs, etc.
Thus, staying in Canada beyond your PGWP is no more a big deal for immigrants. Plenty of options are available for you to enjoy Canada for longer.