Canada Skilled Worker Visas

Canadian Federal Skilled Worker Visa

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With experts in Canada, we have all the resources needed to provide advice on skilled worker visas. We have provided expert advice since 1996 completely free of charge.

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The skilled worker class of Canada visa provides a route for immigration to Canada and permanent residency status for workers with desirable skills.

When it comes to skilled migration Canada functions similar to the Tier 1 system in the UK or Australia 189 visas in that qualification depends upon reaching a threshold under a point-based assessment.  In Canada, this is slightly different as you first need 67 points under the comprehensive ranking system this number changes. An unnecessary complication in our experience, however, we do not make the law, we can only explain how to work with it. 

If you do not qualify for this route to live and work in Canada permanently, you may be able to apply for a Canadian visa of an alternative class.

The Self Employed Immigrant Programme, Entrepreneur Programme and Immigrant Investor Programme (IIP) are all business visas for Canadian immigration routes which offer permanent resident status and the opportunity to apply for Canadian citizenship after three years. They require a lower points score, but each Canada visa application carries its own requirements.

You may also wish to explore the Provincial Nomination Program, another permanent residency visa option which does not require a points assessment but requires that applicants work, if selected, in a specific province.

As a Canadian immigration consultancy, Global Visas can help you to determine which of the range of visas for Canada and Canadian work permits available is the right option for you.

Global Visas provides everything you will require for your relocation to Canada, immigration lawyer expertise, detailed information on the processes of immigration and more.  For those who might want to try Canada before you relocate for good, there is Working Holiday Visa Canada which you might find helpful.


Applying for a Canadian skilled worker visa allows full access to the domestic job market without the need for a sponsoring employer, a Canadian work permit or a specific job offer.

Unlike Canadian visit visas (often referred to as tourist visas for Canada), this permanent visa for when you immigrate to Canada places no restrictions whatsoever on working in the country.

The company-specific conditions of Canadian working permits are bypassed and candidates are free to work without constraint, with the status of a permanent Canadian resident.

After three years in the country, a successful applicant may become a Canadian citizen.

The Points System


For the Canadian Skilled Working visa, points are allocated based on your highest level of achievement AND the number of years you have spent in full-time education.

  • Masters degree or PhD + 17 years of full-time study = Maximum points
  • Two or more bachelors degrees + 15 years full-time study
  • Three-year diploma, trade certificate or apprenticeship + 15 years full-time study
  • Bachelor's degree + 14 years full-time study 
  • Two-year diploma, trade certificate or apprenticeship + 14 years full-time Study
  • One year bachelor's degree + 13 years full-time study
  • One year diploma, trade certificate or apprenticeship + 13 years full-time study
  • One year diploma, trade certificate or apprenticeship + 12 years full-time study
  • High school graduation = Minimum points

Language Proficiency

Canadian immigration visas of this kind award points for language proficiency in either English or French. Bilingual candidates should nominate one of the two languages as their "first language".

Points are allocated in the four key ability areas of:

  • Speaking
  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Writing

A maximum of four points per ability area for the first language and two points per ability area for the second language.

Proficiency in 1st Official Language (Points per ability area)

  • High = Maximum Points
  • Moderate
  • Basic = Minimum Points
  • None = 0


Proficiency in 2nd Official Language (Points per ability area)

  • High = Maximum Points
  • Moderate
  • Basic = Minimum Points
  • None = 0

(Please note: Applicants not born in the UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand or the USA will be required to sit the International English Language Testing System exam).

Work Experience

Points will be awarded for the number of years in full-time paid work.

Occupations must be listed in Canada's National Occupational Classification as Skill Type 0 or Skill Level A or B.

Points will be awarded as follows.

  • 4 years = Maximum Points
  • 3 years
  • 2 years
  • 1 year= Minimum Points


Points are also given to candidates based on their age.

The maximum obtainable in this category applies to applicants aged between 21 and 49.

Two points are deducted for every year outside this range and Canadian visas of this class do not award any points to applicants under 17 or beyond 53 years of age.

Pre-arranged Employment

This type of Canadian immigration service does not require a specific job offer, as is the case with a permit to work in Canada, but an applicant can be awarded extra points if a job is in place.

Points are added to your total for a job offer approved by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) whether you are already in the country on a temporary work permit or applying externally.


In Canada, immigration visa applications of this kind can accumulate extra points for a range of factors related to you and your family's ability to adapt to life in Canada.

Your spouse or common-law partner's education may be worth points. In addition, 5 points are available if you or your partner have completed a 2-year postsecondary educational course in Canada and another 5 if either of you has worked for a least 1 year in full-time employment on a valid Canadian working permit.

Finally, you may be eligible for further points if you or your partner has a relative who is a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident in Canada.


As suggested in the eligibility criteria, a Canadian visa application of this type does make provision for your partner and/or dependent children to join you in the country. Spouse immigration to Canada permits your husband, wife or unmarried partner to move with you along with any unmarried children under the age of 22.


These visas are intended as a route to settlement in Canada and accordingly successful applications for migration to Canada will be granted permanent residence in Canada. Find out further information on our Working Holiday Visa Canada page.


Ask us your questions so we help you.


  1. nazish khisro


    Hope you will be’s me Nazish from Saudi Arab I want to work and live in Canada.I did graduation.I did teaching in school.and I had a job in the Lower Court as a junior clerk and I started my LLB in Pakistan. I completed my 1st-year exam then I got married and stopped my LLB left in the 2nd year f the course. I am now in Saudi Arabia with my husband, I think you may know in KSA are no job available for foreign women. my elder sister also lives in Canada.

    1. Profile photo of Your Immigration Expert
      Your Immigration Expert Post author


      Your efforts to date are great but, it is a shame you have not completed your LLB. Holding a degree you would leave you well placed for Canadian immigration, under the express entry scheme, assuming you are not too old and have a good command of English. Have you looked at the express entry route?

      One thing I would like to mention is the place where you graduated as this may affect the outcome of your visa, if you graduated in Pakistan the Canadian assessing body may suggest the degree is only equivalent to a diploma level qualification. The other concern I have is that you never mentioned your husband’s profession, yet you are both in KSA and you’re not working, so I assume he has some skills which may also be very helpful.

      So first steps, check your points in the express entry system, if you want to start a case please join our forum and open a topic so I can help you further.

  2. ada


    My husband and I are thinking about immigrating to Canada. He is a U.S citizen and I am a permanent residence. My husband is self-empolyed last 20 years as professional investor. He wants to be a self-employed in Canada too and don’t want to find a job in Canada. what kind of immigration program that we are eligible? skilled worker? or others? thanks!

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