The Top Pathways to Permanent Residency in Canada

With amazing people, a thriving economy and a diverse culture, Canada attracts individuals from around the world to become permanent residents. Becoming a permanent resident is a complex process and everyone’s situation differs. In this blog, we will try to give you a better understanding of the different options available. If you want to discuss your particular situation, you can book a one-on-one consultation with one of our consultants who can guide you through your specific situation.

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Express Entry

Express Entry is the most efficient pathway to immigrate to Canada. It is the path most immigrants come to Canada. It was created to help economic migrants that can help the Canadian economy avoid long processing times and settle quickly. The process takes under one year and in some cases a few months from applying to receiving an invitation for permanent residency. Express Entry is not a program itself but rather an online system used by the Canadian government to manage applications for permanent residency from skilled workers. 


Skilled workers can apply to one of three programs Federal Skilled Worker, Canadian Experience Class, or Federal Skilled Trades. Applicants will be determined on a point-based system that ranks applicants based on factors such as age, education, language proficiency, and work experience. The Canadian government holds draws periodically and the highest-ranking applicants are invited to apply for permanent residency through regular draws from the pool of candidates.

Express Entry

Provincial Nominee Programs

Each province has its own economic needs, and to fill them, the Canadian government created Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). It is an immigration program that allows provinces to nominate individuals who have the skills and experience needed in their province and territories for permanent residency. Each province and territory has its own specific PNP streams and criteria, which are aligned with its local labor market needs. The PNP route is considered the second most popular path to permanent residency. By 2025 Canada will bring in nearly 200,000 through the PNP route. 


Depending on the PNP stream, Candidates who are in the Express Entry system can apply for a Provincial Nominee Program, if selected by the province, the applicant will gain points toward their Express Entry score increasing their chance of being invited to apply for permanent residency. If applying for PNP via Express Entry, the process to permanent residency can take under a year. If the PNP does not operate within the Express Entry system, it may take longer than a year and will depend on the processing time of both the province in nominating and the federal government inviting you for a permanent residency. 


It should be noted that immigrants who arrive in Canada with a PNP, will need to spend a minimum amount of two years as a resident in the province before being able to relocate.

Easy Immigration

Atlantic Immigration Pilot

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot is a Canadian immigration program that aims to address labour shortages and attract skilled workers to the Canadian Atlantic provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick. You must receive a job offer from a designated employer in Atlantic Canada to participate in the program. To immigrate through this program, you must either be a recent graduate of a recognized post-secondary institution in Atlantic Canada, or a skilled worker. You can be living abroad or already be in Canada as a temporary resident. Atlantic Immigration Pilot applications typically take 6 months to process, and upon receiving the endorsement certificate from your employer, the applicant has a 6-month window to file their PR application. 

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This path may be the easiest for those who have a family member who currently holds a permanent residency or is a Canadian citizen and is over the age of 18. Types of sponsorships include Spousal, Common-law, Conjugal Partner, Dependent Children, Parents, and Grandparents. With a sponsorship, the sponsored individual can live, study and work in Canada if they become permanent residents of Canada. However, before receiving their permanent residency, they can acquire a work permit allowing them to work in Canada as they wait for their permanent residency application.

Family sponsorship is an immigration category available to the family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Family sponsorships allow Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor family members to immigrate to Canada with a path to permanent residency. There are three types of family sponsorships, spouse or common-law/conjugal partner, dependent child, and parents or grandparents. In this blog, we will break down what you need to know to sponsor your family to Canada.

Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot


Similar to the Atlantic Program Pilot, the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is a regional economic immigration program. The goal of the program is to attract and retain skilled immigrants to smaller communities in Canada. Local communities partner with employers to recruit foreign workers that have the skills and experience for the local job market. Qualified candidates who meet the requirements are then given an opportunity to apply for permanent residency. 


Start-up Visa


If you have the capital to invest in Canada, the Business Immigration route might be an easy route for you. You can apply through a Federal or Provincial (PNP) business immigration program. Whether you are self-employed or are looking to establish a business in Canada you can apply for the Start-Up Visa. To qualify for the Start-Up Visa, you will need to have a letter of support from a designated angel investor group, venture capital fund, or business incubator. You have to meet the ownership requirements for a qualifying business. You have to meet the language requirement by getting a score (CLB) of 5 in all four categories for either English or French. You need to have an adequate amount of money to settle and provide for the cost of living before earning an income. Alternatively, several Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) cater to foreign applicants who wish to start a business in a particular province. Many PNPs offer regional entrepreneur programs that require a lower investment to apply.


Permanent Residence for Caregivers


The demand for caregivers is high in Canada. Individuals who are currently working as caregivers in Canada with an open work permit may be eligible to apply for permanent residency under one of the two pilot programs the Home Child Care Provider Pilot or the Home Support Worker Pilot. To be eligible for the program Permanent Residence for Caregivers, the applicant may be able to apply for permanent residency in Canada after meeting the following work experience requirements: 24 months of authorized full-time live-in employment, or 3,900 hours of authorized full-time employment which must be completed within a minimum of 22 months. When calculating the total hours, overtime of up to 390 hours can be included. It’s important to note that the work experience must be acquired within four years from your date of arrival. By meeting these specific requirements, the applicant may become eligible to apply for permanent residency in Canada under the Live-in Caregiver Program, giving them an opportunity to establish roots and build a new life in the country for the long term.




If you are a student, you can apply for a study permit at a Canadian educational institution. To apply for a student visa, firstly you need a letter of approval from a college or university. The institution must be a designated learning institution (ask us if your school of interest is a DLI (Designated Learning Institution) in Canada. Before you can be fully enrolled, you will need to prepay your tuition and provide proof that you are financially secure enough to cover your living expenses while you study. You will also need a valid passport or travel document for each family member that allows you to return to the country that issued it. After completing your program, you can apply for a work permit. Once you have acquired enough work experience you can apply for the Canadian Experience Class program through Express Entry, a pathway to permanent residency.


What is the fastest way to get permanent residency in Canada?


There is no one “fastest” way to get permanent residency in Canada as the processing time and eligibility requirements vary depending on the specific immigration program. With that being said, the Express Entry System was designed to increase processing times for qualified skilled workers and is the most efficient way to permanent residency in Canada. To find out if you are eligible for the Express Entry and to find out what the fasted path is for you, book a one-on-one consultation with one of our consultants and they can advise your best path forward.


Who is eligible for Permanent Residency in Canada 



Finding out if you are eligible for Permanent Residency in Canada will depend on the program you intend to apply for. If you believe you are eligible for one of the programs mentioned in this blog, book a one-on-one consultation to find out what your next steps are. If you are unsure, don’t worry, Canada offers 100’s of immigration programs, fill out our free assessment, and one of our consultants will contact you to provide you with a list of programs you may be eligible for.


How long does it take to become a permanent resident in Canada?


The processing time for becoming a permanent resident in Canada varies depending on the immigration program through which one is applying, as well as the number of applications being processed by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) at that time. As an example, Express Entry programs range from six months to a year to receive an invitation to apply for permanent residency. Family Sponsorships on the other hand may take several years to process and receive permanent residency.


There are several paths an individual can take to Permanent Residency in Canada. It is a complex process that requires careful consideration and planning. It is important to determine the program that best suits your needs and circumstances. With the right guidance and support, you can increase your chances of success. If you are interested in exploring your options for Permanent Residency in Canada or have questions about the process, we recommend booking a one-on-one consultation with our consultants. A consultation can help you better understand the eligibility requirements, application process, and potential timelines, as well as provide you with personalized advice and guidance to help you achieve your immigration goals.

Express Entry
The information in this blog is not to be interpreted or construed as legal advice. Everyone’s immigration goals, objectives and situations are different. Please contact us to speak to a consultant for advice.

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