How to Move to Canada Without a Job

If you are looking to move to Canada but have been unable to receive a job offer, you may be wondering if there are any other options for you. In this post, our Ottawa and Orleans immigration physicians talk about applying for permanent residency and how you can move to Canada without a job.

You Want to Move to Canada – Now What?

So you've decided that you'd like to make Canada your new home. While many people think that you need to have employment setup before you can begin the process, there are actually other options allowing you to make the move to Canada even when you don't have a job or a job offer. Below, our Ottawa and Orleans immigration physicians discuss some of the most common options for moving to Canada even if you don't have an active job offer.

Federal Skilled Worker Program

When it comes to moving to Canada when you don't have a job, the most common option is the Federal Skilled Worker program. 

The Federal Skilled Worker program allows individuals from around the world to apply for Canadian permanent residency based on a variety of factors. some of which include:

  • Age
  • Education
  • Work Experience
  • English or French Language Skills

This is the easiest option for immigrating to Canada as it doesn't require the applicant to have a job offer or previous Canadian work experience.

When applying to the Federal Skilled Worker Program you will need to follow the required application process. The first step will be to create an Express Entry profile where your application will be officially submitted. Once you are in the Express Entry pool you will receive a score based on your age, education, work experience, language abilities (in both English and French), and any Canadian connections that you may have. If your score meets the requirements you will then be able to apply for permanent Canadian residency.

If your score does not meet the minimum criteria you will then need to either increase your score or your you will be unable to apply for residency in Canada.

International Experience Canada (IEC) Program

After the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the second most popular option for moving to Canada without a job is the International Experience Program or IEC.

The IEC has a Working Holiday category which does not require an active job offer and allows applicants to work anywhere in Canada for a specific period of time for any potential employer. Some of the most common durations for permits are 6 months to 2 years.

The International Experience Canada Program is typically geared toward younger applicants between the ages of 18 and 35.

If you have been working under the IEC Working Holiday permit for 12 months, you would then be able to able for Canadian permanent residency through the Canadian Experience Class.

While you would not need an active job offer to apply through the Canadian Experience Class, you will need to have held continuous, paid, full-time employment within the last three years in an eligible occupation.

Study in Canada

Another option that has been recently rising in popularity is to first study in Canada before applying for residency.

The Express Entry score has been on an upward trend which means that potential applicants need to do more now than ever before to be granted the ability to apply for Canadian residency. The increase in score requirements has been directly affected by the pause in application draws throughout the COVID-19 pandemic closures. 

Another benefit of this method is that while the potential applicant is studying in Canada, their spouses are able to obtain an open work permit. This is beneficial as it allows the spouse to go through the steps to apply for residency through the Canadian Experience Class or the employer can provide a letter supporting their application through the Provincial Nominee Program. In many cases, any children will be allowed to join the applicant along with the spouse.

If you are a student in an eligible program, you may be able to apply for a post-graduate work permit once you have completed the program. At this point, you would then be able to work in Canada for up to 8 months after you have graduated. This timeframe will be based on the length of your program.

At this point, if you have worked in Canada for at least one year full-time, you can then begin the process of applying for permanent residency through the Canadian Experience Class or as a Provincial Nominee with a letter of support from your employer.

In Conclusion

While these are the top three ways to move to Canada without a job, you may have other options depending on your specific background. Speak with our team at Immigration Physician Ottawa to learn more about moving to Canada and the requirements and to schedule your Immigration Medical Examination.

If you have applied for permanent residency and need to schedule your immigration medical exam, contact our panel physicians at Immigration Physician Ottawa today.


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