Wondering what you'll need to become a permanent resident of Canada? Our Ottawa and Orleans immigration physicians discuss five key elements, including an Immigration Medical Exam.
What do I need for permanent residency in Canada?
You'll enjoy a number of rights and privileges as a permanent resident of Canada. You'll also be able to apply for full Canadian citizenship and access social benefits available to citizens of the country. However, as a permanent resident you'll also need to meet a few specific requirements and submit documents such as an immigration medical exam.
In this post, we'll list five key requirements for becoming a permanent resident of Canada. Understanding them ahead of time may help to give you the best chance at obtaining your new status without encountering any unnecessary delays.
1. Your Primary Identification Document
You must present a valid form of primary identification when applying to come to Canada. This may be a valid passport or certificate of identity issued by the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (or an entity equal to this in a different country).
Your primary identification must include these details:
- Document type and number
- Date document was issued
- Expiry date
- Your date of birth
- Your full legal name
- Your photo
It's extremely rare for applicants to be allowed to provide:
- Other identity documents issued outside Canada, or
- Statutory declarations from both themselves and a person who knew them before they traveled to Canada.
Keep in mind that you'll need to have a letter describing the exceptional circumstances that prohibit the applicant from providing the standard identity documents. This may also need to be investigated further, potentially adding time to your application process.
2. A Police Check Certificate
When you apply to become a permanent resident of Canada, you'll likely need to submit a police certificate with your application. If you're a tourist, caregiver, student or temporary worker, you may also be required to submit a police check.
A police check certificate helps the federal government determine whether you have a criminal record and decide whether you are admissible to Canada.
While a criminal record can decrease your chances of successfully applying for permanent residency, not all criminal charges preclude an applicant being admitted to Canada. In particular, charges that have been withdrawn or stayed will not impact your eligibility for permanent residency.
3. Biometrics (Photos & Fingerprints)
Anyone applying to come to Canada for the first time must submit biometrics, including photos and fingerprints.
While students, visitors or temporary workers applying for visas are required to submit this data before the rest of their application, prospective permanent residents need to submit these at the same time as the rest of their application.
Note that if you've already provided your biometric information when applying to come to Canada as a student, visitor or temporary worker, this information is likely still valid, so you will not be required to resubmit it.
After you pay your fee to receive your biometrics, you'll get a letter with further instructions that you'll need to follow precisely to have your biometrics recorded in person at an eligible location. Remember to bring this letter and your valid passport to your appointment.
To prevent delays, schedule your appointment for biometrics as soon as your instruction letter arrives.
4. An Immigration Medical Exam
As part of the process of applying for permanent residency in Canada, students, visitors, temporary workers and others must complete an Immigration Medical Exam. Having one of these done helps verify that you will not pose a health or safety risk to others during your stay, and that you will not put undue demand on public healthcare resources.
An Immigration Medical Exam usually involves:
- A physical examination, including height and weight measurements, blood pressure, vision and hearing tests, and more.
- A mental examination to detect evidence of psychiatric conditions that may require specialized care.
- A medical history questionnaire, including information about any medication you may be taking.
- X-ray or other laboratory tests as needed (including possible creatinine, urinalysis and tests for HIV or syphilis).
Only a government-approved panel physician can perform your physical exam. We have experienced panel physicians ready to complete your exam at either of our two Ottawa clinics. You'll find everything you need for your exam at both of our Ottawa and Orleans locations, including X-rays, blood and urine tests.
5. Paid Fees
Fees come into play during the application process for permanent residency. These fees likely include:
- Right of Permanent Residence Fee - You'll need to pay this once your application is approved.
- Application Processing Fee - Many applicants will need to pay this, depending on how you are applying for permanent residency (e.g. via family sponsorship, business immigration, etc.).
- Immigration Medical Exam Fee - On the day of your appointment with one of our Panel Physicians, you'll be required to pay the Immigration Medical Exam Fee and any fees for additional testing. You can complete all the testing you'll need at your appointment.
Immigration Medical Exams in Ottawa & Orleans
At Immigration Physician Ottawa's two locations in Ottawa and Orleans, you'll find all the services required for your Immigration Medical Exam, including photos, X-rays, blood work, urine and vision tests, and medical exam.
If you're planning to stay in Canada as a permanent resident, you likely have a few questions about the medical tests and exam process. Our experienced physicians and staff understand the Canadian government's requirements and are here to help make the exam process run as smoothly as possible. We offer services in multiple languages, including English, French, Italian, Spanish and more.