Federal skilled trades class: Assessing the application against selection criteria

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. It is posted on the Department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

The federal skilled trades class (FSTC) is prescribed as a class of persons who may become permanent residents on the basis of their ability to become economically established in Canada as workers in a skilled trade occupation, and who

  • intend to reside in a province other than the province of Quebec;
  • meet the minimum language proficiency threshold set by the Minister for proficiency in English or French for each of the four language skill areas;
  • have acquired at least two years of full-time work experience (or the equivalent in part-time work experience) in the skilled trade occupation specified in the application for permanent residence during the five years before the date of the application. This work experience must have been acquired after becoming qualified to independently practice that occupation, according to the regulations in place where the work was performed;
  • have met the relevant employment requirements of that skilled trade occupation as set out in the National Occupation Classification (NOC), except for the requirement to obtain a certificate of qualification issued by a competent provincial authority; and
  • have an offer of employment for continuous full-time work for a total period of at least one year from up to two employers in that skilled trade occupation or hold a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade from a Canadian provincial or territorial authority.

Requirements for membership in the FSTC are found in subsection R87.2(3) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations.

Assess applicants against each of the selection criteria (pass/fail test) outlined below, based on the information and documents provided in the application.

Required work experience in a skilled trade occupation

The applicant must have

  • at least two years (24 months) of full-time work experience, or the equivalent in part-time work, in the skilled trade occupation specified in their application for permanent residence. The work experience must have taken place during the five years (60 months) before the date of application [R87.2(3)(b)]. The work experience does not need to have been obtained over a continuous period. Any work experience obtained in Canada must have been authorized to count towards meeting the work experience requirement; and
  • performed the actions described in the lead statement for the occupation and a substantial number of the main duties listed in the description of the skilled trade occupation as set out in the NOC, including all of the essential duties. They must have been performed after the applicant qualified to independently practice the skilled trade occupation in the jurisdiction where the work was performed.

The applicant does not have to be employed at the time of application.

The applicant must also

  • identify the requirements to practice their trade independently in their country/region; and
  • provide evidence of how they met those requirements before gaining the qualifying work experience.

Examples

  • Plumbers must be certified in Poland before they may practice plumbing independently in that country. A plumber from Poland would need to show proof of their certification and demonstrate that they have at least two years of full-time experience in the last five years as a certified plumber in Poland.
  • In Ontario, carpenters need not be certified to practice carpentry independently. So, a carpenter from Ontario would have to show that they have at least two years of full-time carpentry work experience in Ontario in the last five years, along with evidence that certification is not required.

Employment requirements in a skilled trade occupation

All applicants in the FSTC must meet the relevant employment requirements of the skilled trade occupation specified in the application for permanent residence as set out in the NOC, except for the requirement to obtain a certificate of qualification issued by a competent provincial/territorial authority [R87.2(3)(c)].

Relevant employment requirements may include education, training, required work experience or other qualifications as set out in the NOC.

Offer of employment or certificate of qualification in a skilled trade occupation

Applicants under the FSTC must meet at least one of the following requirements as per paragraph R87.2(3)(d):

  • they hold a certificate of qualification issued by a competent Canadian provincial/territorial authority in the skilled trade occupation specified in their application; or

  • they have an offer of employment from up to two employers for continuous, full-time work in Canada for a total period of at least one year in the skilled trade occupation specified in their application.

    The foreign national has a valid offer of employment in the following circumstances:

    Applications received on or before December 31, 2014 (pre-Express Entry)

    Applicant's employment status in Canada Additional requirements

    Currently working in Canada on a work permit issued by CIC based on a positive labour market impact assessment from ESDC [R87.2(3)(d)(ii)]

    • The applicant is working for any employer specified on the work permit
    • If a Group of Employers (GOE) is listed on the work permit, the applicant can be working for any of the employers included in the GOE.
    • The work permit must be valid at the time of the application for permanent residence.
    • The applicant holds an offer of employment for at least one year of continuous, full-time work in the skilled trade occupation specified on their application. The work must be the same, or in the same minor NOC group (three-digit NOC), as the occupation specified on their work permit.
    • The offer of employment is made by up to two employers (other than an embassy, consulate or high commission in Canada), neither of whom appears on the list referred to in subsection R203(6), and who are specified on the work permit.

    Currently working in Canada on a work permit in a job that is exempt from the ESDC labour market impact assessment requirement under an international agreement pursuant to paragraph R204(a) or (c) [R87.2(3)(d)(iii)]

    • The applicant is working for any employer specified on the work permit.
    • The work permit is valid at the time of the application for permanent residence.
    • The applicant holds an offer of employment for at least one year of continuous, full-time work in the skilled trade occupation specified on their application. The work must be in the same, or in the same minor NOC group (three-digit NOC), as the occupation specified on their work permit.
    • The offer of employment is made by up to two employers (other than an embassy, consulate or high commission in Canada), neither of whom appears on the list referred to in subsection R203(6), and who are specified on the work permit.

    Does not hold a valid work permit and is not authorized to work in Canada under section R186 at the time of the application for permanent residence [R87.2(3)(d)(iv)]

    • Up to two employers (other than an embassy, high commission or consulate in Canada), neither of whom appears on the list referred to in subsection R203(6), have made an offer of employment for at least one year of continuous, full-time work once a permanent resident visa (if any) is issued.
    • The offer of employment for full-time work in a skilled trade occupation has been approved in the form of a positive ESDC labour market impact assessment.

    Either holds a work permit or is authorized to work in Canada under section R186 at the time of the application for permanent residence [R87.2(3)(d)(v)]

    • The circumstances referred to in clauses R87.2(3)(d)(ii)(B) and (C) and subparagraph R87.2(3)(d)(iii) do not apply; for example, the applicant is not currently working for the employer specified on their Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) work permit, or does not hold an offer of employment in the same occupation, or occupation in the same minor NOC group (three-digit NOC) as the occupation specified on their work permit.
    • The circumstances referred to in clauses R87.2(3)(d)(iv)(A) and (B) do apply.

    For example, up to two employers, (other than an embassy, high commission or consulate in Canada) that do not appear on the list referred to in subsection R203(6), have made an offer of employment to the applicant for at least one year of continuous, full-time work once a permanent resident visa (if any) is issued, and the offer of employment for full-time work in a skilled trade occupation has been approved in the form of a positive ESDC labour market impact assessment.

    Note: Any work permit or authorization to work in Canada [R186] must be valid on the date on which their application for permanent residence is made and, at the time a permanent resident visa (if any) is issued.

    Note: If applicable, the LMIA must be valid on the date the application is received. If it is not valid, the application should be assessed as having no LMIA.

    See Role of ESDC for more information on assessing offers of employments and LMIAs.

    Applications received on or after January 1, 2015 (Express Entry)

    Applicant's employment status in Canada Additional requirements

    Currently working in Canada on a work permit issued by IRCC based on a valid assessment from the Department of Employment and Social Development [R87.2(3)(d)(ii)]

    • The applicant is working for any employer specified on the work permit
    • If a Group of Employers (GOE) is listed on the work permit, the applicant can be working for any of the employers included in the GOE.
    • The work permit must be valid on the date on which their application for permanent residence is made and at the time a permanent resident visa is issued.
    • The applicant holds an offer of employment for at least one year of continuous, full-time work in the skilled trade occupation specified on their application. The work must be the same, or in the same minor NOC group (three-digit NOC), as the occupation specified on their work permit.
    • The offer of employment is made by up to two employers (other than an embassy, consulate or high commission in Canada), neither of whom are referred to in any subparagraphs R200(3)(h)(i) to (iii), and who are specified on the work permit.

    Currently working in Canada on a work permit in a job that is exempt from the Department of Employment and Social Development assessment requirement under an international agreement pursuant to paragraph R204(a) or (c), or R205 [R87.2(3)(d)(iii)]

    • The applicant is working for any employer specified on the work permit.
    • The work permit is valid on the date on which their application for permanent residence is made and at the time a permanent resident visa is issued.
    • The applicant holds an offer of employment for at least one year of continuous, full-time work in the skilled trade occupation specified on their application. The work must be in the same, or in the same minor NOC group (three-digit NOC), as the occupation specified on their work permit.
    • The offer of employment is made by up to two employers (other than an embassy, consulate or high commission in Canada), neither of whom are referred to in any subparagraphs R200(3)(h)(i) to (iii), and who are specified on the work permit.
    • They have accumulated at least one year of full-time work experience, or the equivalent in part-time work, over a continuous period of work for the employers who made the offer.

    Does not hold a valid work permit and is not authorized to work in Canada under section R186 at the time of the application for permanent residence [R87.2(3)(d)(iv)]

    • Up to two employers (other than an embassy, high commission or consulate in Canada), neither of whom are referred to in any subparagraphs R200(3)(h)(i) to (iii), have made an offer of employment for at least one year of continuous, full-time work once a permanent resident visa (if any) is issued.
    • The offer of employment for full-time work in a skilled trade occupation has been approved in the form of a positive assessment provided to the officer by the Department of Employment and Social Development, on the same basis as an assessment provided for the issuance of a work permit, at the request of up to two employers or an officer – that the requirements set out in subsection R203(1) with respect to the offer have been met.

    Either holds a work permit or is authorized to work in Canada under section R186 on the date on which their application for permanent residence is made and on the date on which the permanent resident visa is issued. [R87.2(3)(d)(v)]

    • The circumstances referred to in clauses R87.2(3)(d)(ii)(B) and (C) and subparagraph R87.2(3)(d)(iii) do not apply; for example, the applicant is not currently working for the employer specified on their Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) work permit, or does not hold an offer of employment in the same occupation, or occupation in the same minor NOC group (three-digit NOC) as the occupation specified on their work permit.
    • The circumstances referred to in clauses R87.2(3)(d)(iv)(A), (B) and (C) do apply.

    For example, up to two employers, (other than an embassy, high commission or consulate in Canada) that do not appear on the list referred to in subsection R203(6), have made an offer of employment to the applicant for at least one year of continuous, full-time work once a permanent resident visa (if any) is issued, and the offer of employment for full-time work in a skilled trade occupation has been approved in the form of a positive ESDC labour market impact assessment.

    Note: Any work permit or authorization to work in Canada [R186] must be valid on the date on which their application for permanent residence is made and, at the time a permanent resident visa (if any) is issued.

    Note: If applicable, the LMIA must be valid on the date the application is received. If it is not valid, the application should be assessed as having no LMIA.

    See Role of ESDC for more information on assessing offers of employments and LMIAs.

Settlement funds

In addition to the selection criteria stated in subsection R87.2(3), the applicant must also have sufficient funds available for settlement in Canada pursuant to subsection R87.2(5). This requirement is waived if the applicant has a qualifying offer of arranged employment under Express Entry or an offer of employment as defined in subparagraphs R87.2(3)(d)(ii), (iii) and (v).

The funds must be

  • available and transferable;
  • unencumbered by debts or other obligations; and
  • sufficient to support the initial establishment in Canada.

Sufficient funds are determined according to the applicant's family size (including both accompanying and non-accompanying dependents), using 50% of the current low income cut-off (LICO) for urban areas with populations of 500,000 or more.

If the applicant is unable to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds to meet the requirements, refuse the application.

Date Modified: