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Cohen Immigration Law Canada Immigration Lawyers

Simplified Application Process Introduced for Federal Skilled Workers


the CanadaVisa Team - 20 July, 2015

A new simplified application process seeks to expedite the permanent resident application queue.

As of September 1, 2006 most applications for permanent residence under the Federal Skilled Worker and Business Class immigration programs are to be submitted under the new 'Simplified Application Process', a Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) media release announced today.

Long application queues at all international Canadian Visa Offices are causing delays in processing times. CIC has finally recognized this service delay and has implemented the new 'simplified' process in an attempt to expedite processing times.

Rather than submitting the complex set of forms and documents currently required upon initial application, the simplified application process will require skilled worker and business class applicants to submit only an amended basic Application form, the Use of Representative form and government processing fees. Any other documentation sent to the Visa Office will be returned to the applicant until it is requested.

If the application is accepted, processing fees reserve applicants a spot in the queue. Applicants are not to contact the Visa Office for any reason other than withdrawal from the process or a change in mailing address.

Documentation and additional information requirements will remain the same as the former system, but they will not be requested of the applicant until the file has reached the end of the queue and is ready to be reviewed, approximately 4 months later.

Canadian immigration attorney David Cohen is generally pleased with the simplified application process stating, "By waiting until the time of review to submit documentation, the new system should cut down on the processing delays caused by duplicate and updated information requests from the Visa Office. This is a positive step towards expediting the process for qualifying applicants".

Applicants should beware, however, of the new system. If the basic Application form is not completed correctly, the application will be immediately returned. Given the precise specifications required on the forms, this could produce much frustration and time delays for potential applicants.

Mr. Cohen warns of another potential problem with the new system stating, "The Application form does not allow for a full presentation of an applicant's qualifications, especially with respect to work experience, an essential element of the Skilled Worker selection system. If Visa Officers intend to assess applications upon a preliminary review of the application form before receiving supporting documentation, then some qualified applicants will certainly be refused." As a result, he warns that potential applicants should not equate 'Simplified Application Process' with 'Easy to Succeed Application Process'.

The new process will take effect at every Canadian Visa Office, with the exception of the Buffalo Visa Office, where the former process will remain in place. Applicants with Arranged Permanent Employment in Canada will also be processed under the former system at every Canadian Visa Office, as these applications are expedited and therefore require all documentation upon initial submission of the file. Likewise, the new process will not apply to applicants destined to Quebec or selected by a province under the Provincial Nominee Program. The new simplified application process will affect Permanent Residency applicants under the Federal Skilled Worker and Business Class immigration programs only.

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