Most provinces and territories in Canada can nominate immigrants through the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). These immigrants must have the skills, education and work experience to contribute to the economy of that province or territory, and must want to live there.
Each province and territoryFootnote * has its own “streams” (immigration programs that target certain groups) and criteria for their PNP. For example, in a program stream, provinces and territories may target students, business people, skilled workers or semi-skilled workers.
Since January 1, 2015, many provinces and territories have launched new Express Entry streams. Check their websites to learn more about which streams they offer.
1. Determine your eligibility
Each province and territory’s streams, eligibility requirements and nomination guidelines for their PNP can change without notice. Check the websites of the provinces or territories for the most up-to-date information.
If you are nominated under a non-Express Entry stream:
- you will have to apply through the paper-based process, and
- if the province or territory finds you eligible and nominates you, you will send an application to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
If you are nominated under a province or territory’s Express Entry stream, you must:
- meet their requirements, and
- meet the minimum criteria for Express Entry
- this includes meeting the requirements of at least one of the immigration programs it covers.
You can use our online tool, Come to Canada, to see if you are eligible. If you are invited to apply for permanent residence, you will submit an online application to CIC.
Find out more about eligibility for the PNP.
To apply for the PNP you must:
- apply to a province or territory for a nomination,
- be nominated by that province or territory, then
- apply to CIC to become a permanent resident.
Under a PNP Express Entry stream, you will need to complete an Express Entry profile and show that you meet the minimum criteria for Express Entry.
Learn more about applying to the PNP.
3. Check processing times
Find out how long it will take CIC to process your application under the paper-based process (non-Express Entry streams).
If you apply through Express Entry (Express Entry streams), most complete applications for permanent residence will be processed in six months or less. Since Express Entry is a new system, average processing times are not yet available.
4. After you apply: get next steps
Find out what happens after you apply to come to Canada as a provincial nominee.
5. Prepare for arrival
Find out what to expect when you arrive in Canada.
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