How we assess your application
After you apply, a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) officer will verify that you have:
- filled out your application forms correctly and signed them,
- paid your processing fee, and
- included all documents.
If your application is not complete, we will send it back to you without processing it.
The Centralized Intake Office (CIO) will contact you when it gets your application. You will be told what you need to do and what will happen next.
How long it takes to process applications will vary based on which visa office ends up processing your application. You can check application processing times.
You may be able to avoid delays by:
- telling the visa office about any changes to your personal information, such as your address, telephone number or email, or the birth of a child, and
- not contacting the visa office more than once about the same issue.
Your application will be delayed if:
- there are criminal or security problems or we need to do more background checks,
- your family situation is not clear—reasons could include a divorce or an adoption that is not yet complete or child custody issues that have not been resolved, or
- the visa office has to contact other CIC offices in Canada or abroad to verify the data you gave.
You can check the status of your application online after the visa office has received it from CIO and started processing.
You must have a medical exam before you come to Canada. Your family members must also have one, even if they are not coming with you.
We will not accept your application if your health:
- is a danger to Canada’s public health or safety, or
- would cause too much demand on health or social services in Canada.
We will send you a letter to tell you how to get the medical exam after we send your application to the visa office.
If you have a criminal record, you may not be allowed to enter Canada. People who pose a risk to Canada’s security are also not allowed to come to Canada.
To immigrate to Canada, you and any family members 18 years of age and older must provide police certificates to the visa office if asked to do so.
Decision on your application
The CIC officer will make a decision on your application based on:
- whether you meet the eligibility criteria for the program,
- whether you have the funds to support yourself and your family when you arrive in Canada,
- the results of your medical exam, and
- the information on your police certificate.
The office that processes your application will contact you if you need to send more documents or go to an interview.
If your application is approved, we will ask you to send your passport to the visa office so we can issue your permanent resident visa.
Confirmation of permanent residence
If we approve your application, we will issue you a permanent resident visa. This visa includes your Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR) and your entry visa.
Your COPR will have information about who you are as well as your photograph. Please check to make sure it is correct. It should be the same as the information on your passport. If there is a mistake on your COPR, contact your visa office.
You must have your COPR and your visa with you when you arrive in Canada.
How to contact the Centralized Intake Office
Federal skilled workers who applied to the CIO and have a request for case information may contact the Client Service Unit (CSU). Note that if your application has already been sent to the visa office for processing, the CIO will not be able to help you.
You will not receive a reply to your email if:
- you have not already applied as a federal skilled worker;
- you are not authorized by the applicant to receive personal information;
- you applied within the last six weeks; or
- your enquiry concerns a topic other than your case.
Please do not send the same enquiry more than once. You can reach the CSU at CIO‑Sydney‑Search‑Enquiry@cic.gc.ca.
Centralized Intake Office
49 Dorchester Street
Sydney, Nova Scotia B1P 5Z2
Please clearly mark “Federal skilled worker/FSW” on the outside of the envelope or in email subject line.