Quebec is Canada’s largest province in terms of size and is often referred to as “La Belle Province”. Known for its European-style cities such as Montreal, Quebec is a prime destination for immigrants from all over the world.
The Quebec Skilled Worker Program is specifically designed for applicants who intend to reside in the Province of Quebec. The program consists of two phases: the issuance of a Quebec Selection Certificate followed by the issuance of a Canadian Permanent Resident visa.
i. Quebec Selection Certificate
The first step in obtaining a permanent resident visa through Quebec is to obtain a Quebec Selection Certificate (CSQ). A CSQ is a document issued by the Quebec immigration authorities (Immigration et Communautés Culturelles Québec) indicating that the applicant designated on the certificate has been selected to reside within the Province of Quebec. The CSQ is not a permanent resident visa, but rather authorization by the province to apply for permanent residency. In order to qualify for a CSQ, an applicant must score at least 49 points (or 57 points with a spouse or common-law partner) in the following 10 selection factors:
- Education – a maximum of 28 points can be obtained for education and area of training;
- Age – a maximum of 16 points can be obtained for applicants between the ages of 18 and 42 years of age;
- Experience – a maximum of 8 points can be obtained for work experience;
- Language proficiency – a maximum of 22 points can be obtained for French and English proficiency;
- Stay and Family in Quebec – a maximum of 8 points can be obtained for having stayed in Quebec or for having family living in Quebec;
- Validated Employment Offer – a maximum of 10 points can be obtained for having a valid employment offer in Quebec
- Financial Self-Sufficiency – an applicant must obtain 1 point to qualify and must meet a minimum funds requirement;
- Spouse’s Characteristics – an applicant can obtain up to 16 points for a spouse’s (or common-law partner’s) education, area of training, age, and language proficiency;
- Children – a maximum of 8 points can be obtained for children;
- Adaptability – a maximum of 6 points can be obtained upon the interview for adaptability.
Once all supporting documents have been submitted to the Quebec visa office, the application is assessed against the Quebec Skilled Worker selection criteria. The majority of applicants who meet the requirements are then called for an interview, which is a great opportunity for applicants to express their motivation and desire to reside in Quebec. Upon the completion of a successful interview, a CSQ is issued.
ii. Permanent Resident Visa
After the CSQ has been issued, an applicant submits the certificate, along with forms and supporting documents, to the federal immigration authorities who assess the applicants for medical and security purposes. The applicant and family members are then granted Canadian Permanent Resident visas.
As French is the predominant language in Quebec, all applicants must demonstrate, at least, a willing to learn French. Some applicants will require a higher score in French language proficiency if they are lacking points in other selection factors.
Why the Quebec Skilled Worker Program Is Good For You
The Quebec Skilled Worker category of immigration is more sophisticated and complex than the Federal Skilled Worker Program. The Quebec selection system is based on a “human capital” model and unlike most provincial nominee programs, an applicant does not require a job offer to qualify. Unlike the Federal program for skilled workers, Quebec does not limit the number of applicants by specific occupation. Many applicants, such as Registered Nurses and Computer/IT Specialists to name just two, no longer qualify for the Federal program as their occupation is no longer on the list of qualifying occupations or that their specific occupation’s cap limit has been reached. The Quebec Skilled Worker Program offers these people a new opportunity for permanent residency and with so many ways to qualify under the Quebec Skilled Worker Program, all we can say to you is “Bienvenue a Québec!”