Federal Skilled Worker Program

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What is the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program?

The Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program is one of Canada’s most popular immigration pathways to obtain Canadian permanent residency. What makes FSWP unique is that it allows candidates with foreign work experience and no connections to Canada the opportunity to join a pool of eligible applicants to receive an Invitation To Apply (ITA).

The FSW program allows individuals from around the world to apply for Canadian permanent residency based on a variety of factors which include:

  • Age
  • Education
  • Work experience
  • English or French language skills
  • Financial (settlement funds)

The FSW program does not require a job offer to be eligible, nor does it require any Canadian work experience, making it the easiest Canadian immigration pathway for prospective immigrants.

Are you eligible to apply under the FSW program

In order to qualify to apply to the Federal Skilled Worker Program, you need to meet all of the following criteria:


Work Expereince

You have at least one year of continuous, full-time (or an equal amount in part-time), paid, skilled work experience within the last ten years classified under the National Occupation Code (NOC) TEER 0, 1, 2 or 3.


Language Proficiency

You can achieve a minimum score of a CLB or NCLC 7 in all sections of an approved English or French language test.



You have completed a minimum of a Canadian high school diploma equivalent or higher.


Finances (Settlement Funds)

You have the required amount of settlement funds for your family size. (see breakdown below)


You are not inadmissible to Canada

Applicants and their families must meet basic Canadian admissibility requirements. Certain criminal offences and medical conditions may make the applicant inadmissible to Canada.


FSW Points

You can earn a minimum of 67 points based on the Federal Skilled Worker Points System.


Living in Canada

Should have the intention to reside outside the province of Quebec.

How can I apply to the FSW program?

Applicants who are eligible to apply will submit their FSW profiles online via the Express Entry file management system to the Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The Express Entry file management system uses the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) to rank candidates who wish to settle permanently in Canada. Only after submitting an Express Entry profile will an applicant be assigned a CRS score and be considered in future Express Entry draws for Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for permanent residence.

When an applicant submits their Express Entry profile they will be required to submit details of the following:

  • Canadian qualifications or foreign equivalent Education Credential Assessment (ECA)

To claim points for education, an FSW applicant must provide a valid ECA report. There are five organizations in Canada authorized to issue ECA reports. This is not a requirement for qualifications obtained from a Canadian educational institution.

  • Language proficiency – English or French

All applicants who want to enter the Express Entry program must provide language results from an approved language test taken within the previous two years. Accepted tests for English include the IELTS exam, the CELPIP exam and soon to be available in 2024 the Pearson language exam. Accepted tests for French include the Test d’Évaluation de Français (TEF) and the Test de connaissance du français pour le Canada (TCF Canada).

  • Personal identification documents

Applicants will be required to provide details from their identification documents. It is advisable for the applicant and all accompanying family members to have valid passports for travel.

If an applicant successfully receives an ITA they have 60 days to submit their permanent residency application to IRCC. Their application for permanent residency will be submitted electronically online through the applicant’s GCKey portal that was created.

Since the inception of the Express Entry system, the lowest score that has been selected is 75 in 2021 but we dont foresee this happening again.

Settlement Funds

For the FSW program, you will be required to prove that you have enough money to support yourself and your family after you arrive in Canada unless you are already working in Canada on a valid work permit. This money cannot be borrowed and must be available at the time of application. This money cannot be used for the immigration process and must remain available up until the day you arrive in Canada.

Number of family members
Funds required (in Canadian dollars)
For each additional family member

Legal Disclaimer: This tool is intended solely for general guidance and reference purposes only.

Step-by-step instructions on how to apply

The simplified process of applying to immigrate to Canada as a Federal Skilled Worker is outlined below. If your application is approved you are then granted Permanent Resident status in Canada. After living in Canada for three years within a five year period as a Permanent Resident, you may qualify to apply for Canadian Citizenship.


Find out if you qualify complete our CRS calculator above or our free assessment.


Have your education assessed by a designated organization.


Wait to receive an “Invitation to Apply”.


Receive an “Invitation to Apply”.


Submit your application for permanent residency within 60 days.


Wait for your application to be assessed and approved within an average of 12 – 18 months.


Obtain your immigrant visa and Confirmation of Permanent Residency document (CoPR) and immigrate to Canada!

Available Programs

Click on one of the available Canadian immigration programs below to find out the full requirements.

Express Entry

The Express Entry system is a file management system used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for certain immigration applications. The Express Entry system is used by anyone seeking to immigrate to Canada as a Federal Skilled Worker, Federal Skilled Tradesperson, member of the Canadian Experience Class or certain Provincial Nominee programs. If you do not meet the requirements of one of those four programs, you will not be eligible to use the Express Entry system.... more

Canadian Experience Class

The Canadian Experience Class is for those who have previously worked in Canada, on a valid work permit, in a skilled occupation for one year or longer on a full-time paid basis in the past three years and are proficient in English or French.... more

Federal Skilled Worker

You have one year or more of full-time paid work experience in an NOC teer 0, 1, 2 or 3 classified occupation and; You have achieved 67 points or higher on the Federal Skilled Worker Points System (this is based on age, education, language, work experience and adaptability. If you do not have any post-secondary education, you will not be likely to qualify.)... more

Provincial Nominee

For those individuals who may need additional points for the Express Entry System, Provincial Nominations can add 600 points to their score. Most Provincial programs require a job offer , while some will select individuals without a job offer if their skills are in demand in that specific Province or if their Comprehensive Ranking System score is high enough.... more

Federal Skilled Trades

The Federal Skilled Trades program requires applicants to either have a full-time paid job offer in their skilled trade in Canada or they need to physically travel to Canada to write a Canadian Red Seal examination before they would be eligible to apply under this program. This program also uses the Express Entry system and would require applicants to be proficient in English or French.... more

Business Programs

For those who have an entrepreneurial background and are looking to start a business in Canada or purchase an existing business in Canada, there is a large variety of programs available depending on the type of business you want to open or purchase. Some programs require you to have a substantial personal net worth and invest a minimum of $200,000 or more into a business, while others have no financial requirements and focus more on your business plan and whether or not you have the finances available to support your business plan. With most of these options, you would first, be issued with a temporary work permit, and then if your business was successful, you would be able to transition to permanent residency. These programs would also be used by anyone looking to own and operate a farm in Canada.... more

What's Next?

Take our free assessment

Complete our free assessment here to have our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant evaluate whether you would be eligible to immigrate to Canada at this time.... more

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To review your eligibility and all of your available Canadian immigration options directly with our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant, book a full consultation right now.... more

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