What is Express Entry?
This is a post about express entry. A lot of people wonder if they’re eligible to apply for express entry and how long it takes. Let’s talk about that.
In order to apply through the express entry online system, you actually have to meet the qualifications of one of 4 existing immigration programs. These are the federal skilled worker program; the federal skilled trades program; the Canadian experience class and certain provincial nominee programs. (Note that not all provincial programs go through the express entry system, some of them are still paper based.)
The express entry system is more of an online file management system (used by the Canadian government for aforementioned programs) than a separate immigration program. So, if you don’t actually meet the minimum criteria of one of the 4 immigration programs that use it you cannot apply through the express entry system.
Once you do submit an application through the express entry system, you are placed in what’s called the express entry pool. This is where all the candidates who are applying through one of the four immigration programs submit their application. Then each applicant is given what’s called a comprehensive ranking system score. This score is out of 1200 points and is the score the government will use when they’re actually selecting people for permanent residency. Note that it might be possible for someone to submit an application through the express entry system and have a comprehensive ranking system score that is too low and then they will never be selected from the express entry pool and will never actually get to proceed with the permanent residency application. Thus, it is very important, before you submit an application, that you understand what your comprehensive ranking system score is and what your odds of being selected are.
Once you are in the express entry pool and you’ve been assigned your comprehensive ranking system score, the government will do what’s called a draw. These occur on average every two weeks, but it can fluctuate. The government goes into the express entry pool and they select a certain number of candidates based on score alone. Say they want to allow 2500 people through the system in a given week, then they will go into the express entry system and pick the top 2500 people based on their scores alone. If there is a tie, for instance maybe there’s 2555 people with a similar score, those who submitted their application first will be picked before those who submitted it later.
Watch the video here to find out more about how a tiebreaker would work.
Only once you receive the invitation to apply can you actually send in your application for permanent residency. Once you receive the invitation you will be given 90 days to submit your full application to the Canadian government and if it is approved you would then be eligible to enter Canada to activate your permanent residency.
If you do require more details about the express entry system, or if you want to sit down with someone such as myself to find out more about your specific application, so as to know whether or not you are actually eligible, what your comprehensive ranking system score would be, and if there’s actually a way to bring that score up, then feel free to contact us.