NOC 2021: Changes to Canadian Immigration and Foreign Worker Eligibility
As of November 16, 2022, IRCC has transitioned to NOC 2021.
This CanadaVisa page explains the impact of NOC 2021 on the eleven economic class immigration and work permit programs affected by this change.
Table of Contents
- What is NOC 2021?
- Affected Canada Immigration Programs
- Matching your NOC 2016 to NOC 2021
- Find your NOC
- Changes to Express Entry eligibility criteria
- New jobs eligible through Express Entry
- Jobs ineligible through Express Entry
- Impact on Express Entry CRS scores
- Impact on the Federal Skilled Workers Program (FSWP)
- Next Steps: Updating online Express Entry profiles
- About the Cohen Immigration Law Firm and CanadaVisa
IRCC has been using different versions of the NOC system since 1992 to categorize and classify occupations for purposes of immigration.
As of November 16, 2022, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) are using the 2021 version of the National Occupation Classification (NOC) system to assess the occupations of skilled worker permanent residence and work permit applicants.
This change impacts Express Entry and a variety of other major Canadian immigration and work permit pathways.
NOC 2021 impacts eligibility criteria for the following 11 programs:
- Express Entry: Canadian Experience Class (CEC), Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
- Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP)
- Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)
- Caregivers Programs
- Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot
- Agri-Food Pilot
- Out-of-Status Construction Workers
- Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP)
- International Mobility Program (IMP)
One example of a change occurring with NOC 2021 is that the outgoing NOC system (NOC 2016) required that an Express Entry candidate had work experience classified under NOC skill types 0, A, B, C or D. The new NOC 2021 uses a six-category Training, Education, Experience and Responsibilities (TEER) system.
The table below will match NOC 2016 skill types/levels with NOC 2021 TEER categories and provide occupation types and examples that align with each TEER category.
|Skill Level 0
|Advertising, marketing and public relations managers;
|Skill Level A
|Occupations that usually require a university degree
|Skill Level B
Occupations that usually require
|Computer network and web technicians;
Medical laboratory technologists
|Skill Level B
Occupations that usually require
Dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants
|Skill Level C
Occupations that usually require
|Home child care providers;
Retail salespersons and visual merchandisers
|Skill Level D
|Occupations that usually need short-term work demonstration and no formal education
|Landscaping and grounds maintenance labourers;
Delivery service drivers and door-to-door distributors
NOC 2021 is changing all occupation codes from four to five digits.
If you are wondering what your new NOC is, use this Government of Canada tool to find your NOC 2021 code and TEER category today, according to your job title.
Express Entry is one of Canada's main methods for bringing skilled immigrants to Canada. All three programs under Express Entry will see shifts in eligibility criteria with NOC 2021.
Note: CLB refers to Canadian Language Benchmark
|Canadian Experience Class
|Federal Skilled Worker Program
|Federal Skilled Trades Program
|English or French skills
|CLB 7 for TEER 0 or TEER 1 occupations; CLB 5 for TEER 2 or TEER 3 occupations.
|CLB 5 for speaking and listening; CLB 4 for reading and writing.
|Type/Level of work experience
|Canadian work experience in an occupation listed in one or more of these NOC TEER Categories: TEER 0, TEER 1, TEER 2, or TEER 3.
|Work experience in an occupation listed in one of these NOC TEER Categories: TEER 0, TEER 1, TEER 2, or TEER 3.
|Work experience in a skilled trade under key groups of TEER 2 or TEER 3.*
|Amount of work experience
|One year in Canada in the last three years (either combination of full-time or part-time work).
|One year continuous within the last 10 years (combination of part-time, full-time or more than one job in your primary occupation).
|Two years within last five years (either combination of full-time or part-time work).
|Not required but you can get selection criteria (FSW) points for having a valid job offer.
|A valid job offer of full-time employment for a total period of at least one year or a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial, territorial or federal authority.
|Secondary education required. You can get more selection criteria (FSW) points for your post-secondary education.
NOC 2021 has made the following 16 occupations now eligible through the Express Entry system.
- Payroll administrators
- Dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants
- Nurse aides, orderlies, and patient service associates
- Pharmacy technical assistants and pharmacy assistants
- Elementary and secondary school teacher assistants
- Sheriffs and bailiffs
- Correctional service officers
- By-law enforcement and other regulatory officers
- Estheticians, electrologists and related occupations
- Residential and commercial installers and servicers
- Pest controllers and fumigators
- Other repairers and servicers
- Transport truck drivers
- Bus drivers, subway operators and other transit operators
- Heavy equipment operators
- Aircraft assemblers and aircraft assembly inspectors
NOC 2021 has made the following three occupations ineligible through the Express Entry system.
- Other performers
- Program leaders and instructors in recreation, sport, and fitness
- Tailors, dressmakers, furriers, and milliners
The three newly ineligible occupations are still eligible for other immigration pathways with broader occupational eligibility criteria, such as some streams of the 11 PNPs across Canada.
Through NOC 2021, the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points given for ‘arranged employment’ will now follow an updated Skill Type/Level chart.
For example, a candidate who would have received 50 points for ‘arranged employment’ in Skill Type/Level 0, A or B (NOC 2016) will still get those points if their NOC is in TEER 0, 1, 2 or 3 (NOC 2021).
Through NOC 2021, points given for ‘selection factors’ as part of the Federal Skilled Workers Program (FSWP) will now follow an updated Skill Type/Level chart.
For example, a candidate who would have received 10 points for ‘arranged employment’ in Skill Type/Level 0, A or B (NOC 2016) will still get those points for ‘arranged employment’ in TEER 0, 1, 2 or 3 (NOC 2021).
Depending on where a candidate is in their Express Entry journey, IRCC will require different actions because of the switch to NOC 2021.
Candidates who have not yet submitted an Express Entry profile but plan to do so on or after the day Canada transitions from NOC 2016 (November 16, 2022) will be required to find and submit their occupation’s code in line with the NOC 2021 when filling out their Express Entry profile.
Candidates who have already submitted a profile but have not received an Invitation to Apply (ITA) will need to update their submitted Express Entry profile after the move away from NOC 2016 is official. Express Entry candidates will need to search the NOC 2021 list on the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) website and update their Express Entry profile using their new NOC 2021 TEER category and five-digit occupation code.
Candidates who received an ITA prior to November 16 must simply submit their Express Entry application using the NOC 2016 system (and the NOC code provided at the time of ITA receipt). In this case, the change to NOC 2021 can be ignored.
Cohen Immigration Law is a leading Canadian immigration law firm with over 45 years of experience. Cohen Immigration Law features over 60 immigration lawyers, paralegals, and professionals who are dedicated to helping you immigrate to Canada.
CanadaVisa.com was founded as the online presence of Cohen Immigration Law. Since its launch in 1994, CanadaVisa has grown into one of the globe's most trusted resources on Canadian immigration. If you want to immigrate to Canada through Express Entry or another skilled worker pathway, the first step is to complete a free CanadaVisa assessment form. If you are eligible for Canadian immigration, a member of the Cohen Immigration Law team will reach out to provide you with as much assistance as possible.