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After living for 5 years in Canada with three different employers and at least five work permit renewals, I finally got the permanent resident in the Canada for me and my family. I will describe in this article how I did it and I will share some few tips.

Please remember I am going to write what to do, not how to do it. I will also describe my specific case, which it will be useful for those who have a similar scenario. Please do not send me questions regarding how to do things or what if you have another profession different than mine, I will just ignore those comments.

Renewing the work permit should not be a problem anymore. And I think the CIC is understanding this. Last time I wrote how I went to the border to get a new work permit with a new employer. In this case, I am going to talk about the renewal process.

This time I decided to do it online. I have found that you will not lose your status if your work permit expires and the new one is being already processed. And since my situation has not changed, being in an implied status does not hurt at all.

Before doing the Online Application

One of my first doubts about renewing the current work permit was if my current employer needs to run again the LMIA exception process. The answer is yes. So, he logged into the employer portal (he has already because this was his second time), paid the 230 CAD and took the code (LMIA exceptions code starts with A followed by digits).

Additional to the LMIA exception, I had to ask my employer for a letter (Job Offer). This is a custom letter stating he is willing to renew the work permit and the conditions of my work. Later I may upload a template for it.

This was new to me, in 2016 I was not asked for this. But now, even National Foreign Workers will need a medical exam. Medical exams are not cheap, in my case I paid about 1200 CAD for me and my family. The good thing is they can be used for a lapse of one year. So, if you are running your permanent residency as well, you can use the same exam for both processes.

Another thing is about the language. Since 2016, the form has a question asking if you have taken any language exam. I have not found so far that this is a must. At least in my readings for my NOC 2171. But it would be good if you already have it. Language exams expire in a term of two years and depending on where and who you take with, it costs around 300 CAD.

Before I forget, remember you will need to back up any claim you do. In my specific case, it was easy, as I have already done that (this is not my first renewal). If you are a Computing Engineer, you must show university transcripts, title photocopy and they should be translated by a certified translator. The same applies to birth, marriage, and any other certificate.

Doing the Application

To get the application online you need to log in the CIC portal, pass all the verification pages and when you get into the dashboard then you look for a button that says you want to apply for a job permit. It will ask you for a code (which I did not have) or to take the questionary. Questions are very straightforward, however, there are some terms that I would like to clarify for everybody:

  • what are you doing in Canada?: if you are looking for a work permit, select the option that says working for more than 6 months
  • do you want to restore status?: there is a question that asks you if you want to restore your status. Answer no if your current permit has not expired yet.
  • what are you kids doing in Canada?: Usually, they will be students but in this case, this question refers about more they stay than their activity. You should select the residence/stay option. The student option would apply if they are in college or University to the best of my knowledge.

Filling the forms is a pain because you must use Acrobat Reader to fill them (using another PDF editor will not work). In my case, I had to fill forms IMM5707, IMM2708, IMM5710, and IMM5713. The system will give you the links to these forms, as they may change. I had to fill the forms with a lot of data, including some I did not know by hard such as:

  • UIC of your family members
  • Original (first) arrival to Canada (place and date)
  • Last  arrival to Canada (place and date)
  • Last expedited document number (This is the last permit number, they usually start with a U followed by numbers)
  • Your work story for the last 10 years

Where is the form IMM5802?

I was having that worry because the system asks for something to be uploaded in the optional document section. After discussing with an agent, he told me that that form does not exist anymore. I do not need to get worried about that. With my LMIA exception code (the one that starts with an A followed by some numbers) in the IMM5710 form is more than enough.

Submit and wait. Good luck!

 

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After about 10 natural days, I got an email saying my exam results are ready. So I went immediately to review. All was good, I got minimum English qualifications for the NOC career I have. If you have an NOC A or 0 careers, your minimum qualification must be 7 in the CLB scale in all competencies.

As I have already written, you must become a temporal worker before applying for permanent residence (refugees are very different, you must come from a country in a war like Siria). So, after being laid off, I found an employer willing to run the work permit for me. Please note that I will share what I did and my experience at that time.The first thing you should know is I am taking advantage of NAFTA. NAFTA allows US and Mexican citizens to come to Canada as temporary foreign worker very easily. As for November 2016, because I am Mexican, this was the easiest and fastest way to stay longer in Canada but not the right path to become a permanent residence. In January 2017, I am not wrong, the CIC change some pointing rules and NAFTA workers could get 200 extra points which it may or may not help you for the pool invitation, but that is another story. Let us back to the main subject.

This time I did not hire a migration consultant. I felt confident enough to do it by myself.

WES Report

If you are like me, have a university or higher studies, you should know that those studies are not officially valid in Canada. You need to do run a process to get your equivalent study level.

Your next question is, why you may want to have a Canadian equivalency degree? The answer is easy, this process is needed if you want to continue studying or for migration purposes.

In order to get the paper you need, you need to follow these steps:

  1. Go to the website of World Education Services, there are others, but I found this clear enough to run the process.
  2. Start a Canadian credential assessment. You will need to pay like 325 USD. The system will ask you to start listing all your university, master or doctoral studies. Only input studies you are 100% you can get original transcripts from the University.
  3. Grab your diplomas and do a photocopy. The website will show you desired papers you need to mail to them.
  4. The website will show you a list of papers they need to get from the University. In my case, it was only the transcripts. You will need to fill and sign an authorization form to let the University send papers to WES. Print that form, fill it, sign it and send it to school (you can scan it and send by email). University will need to print that form, fill blank spaces and sign it. It is very important the school sends the signed form with the required papers in a closed official university envelope. Sometimes University will send you the transcripts and authorization form, if this is the case, it is very important they send you a clean envelope with the institution logo so you can close it and send it. It is very important that case number is written on the envelope.
  5. You will get updates by email when WES get papers. As soon all papers are sent and okay, you will get your assessment. In my case, after having all papers, it was 5 days waiting.

The paper you will get it is more or less like this.