Halifax Nova Scotia Immigration

Nova Scotia Needs To reform Immigration System – New Auditor’s Report


According to a new auditor general, Kim Adair’s report, Nova Scotia needs to reform immigration system of the province. The government needs to understand better what immigrants need to settle in the province as the province sets out ambitious goals to increase the general population.

In a report released Tuesday (November 8), Kim Adair stated that the government spends $6.4 million annually on immigrant settlement assistance without understanding whether the money helps prevent them from leaving.

Below are report highlights and findings, in addition to the suggestions made by the auditor general.

More work is needed to meet Nova Scotia’s immigration target

Adair explains that the current retention rate of 70% must be increased to 75%, which would require an increase in yearly population growth of more than twofold, to 25,000 people, from the current 10,000.

The auditor general’s recommendations, such as looking at how settlement financing may best fulfill immigrant needs, are being worked on, according to immigration minister Jill Balser. As more and more newcomers settle in Nova Scotia, Balser said, the services must be flexible and adaptive to serve individual needs constantly.

She added that her agency is also creating two new roles to handle fraud investigations and program compliance checks, introducing 12 new positions to process immigration applications more consistently.

In 2021, Nova Scotia welcomed a record 9,160 immigrants; as of August of this year, that total had already surpassed 9,375 persons.



Lack of evaluation by immigration Department of immigrant required services 

Adair claimed that the Immigration Department had not evaluated the kinds of services required to help immigrants settle in Nova Scotia, adding that the government puts an undue reliance on information obtained from outside sources.

Adair’s report stated that it is very difficult to identify what settlement services are required, which service providers should receive money, and whether any gaps exist without a detailed assessment to evaluate the requirements of immigrants. 

The auditor general said that 18 immigrant settlement companies are currently working in the province, offering services such as language training, employment counselling, and community welcoming initiatives. However, Adair claimed that the government had not thoroughly examined the services given, their locations, or the demand for them.

For instance, according to the report, evaluating whether language training is offered across the province or figuring out whether there is a greater need for particular settlement services in some places than others.

The importance of feedback from immigrants

Adair emphasized feedback from immigrants could help determine where future funding should be directed. In addition, the province has to identify labour market gaps for effective spending to match newcomers to jobs.

While speaking to reporters in an interview, Adair said her department recommended that rather than just being reactionary, a framework should be in place. It would help the government get on top of the issues since it takes time to shift their focused efforts to particular gaps in the labour force. 

Additionally, she said that her audit uncovered inconsistencies in how the province evaluates immigration petitions, leaving the system vulnerable to fraud.

Furthermore, Adair noted that the province intends to increase its population to two million by 2060, requiring improvements in such areas.

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  • Express Entry Glitch Invited Some Ineligible Profiles In Latest Draw

    With the implementation of the new TEER system on November 16, IRCC Express Entry management system has reflected several glitches. In addition, many lawyers and immigration specialist have voiced their concerns about the ongoing IRCC glitches. 

    Certain Express Entry profiles didn’t receive an invitation to apply (ITA) in November 23 draw; although, they had CRS score above the declared cut off. While some ineligible profiles got the invite because some profiles received additional CRS points that they were not entitled to.

    This article highlights some of the glitches in the Express Entry system that has affected the system after implementation of new TEER system on November 16. 



    Glitches in the Express Entry system

    Ottawa based Immigration lawyer Tamara Mosher-Kuczer highlighted some of the glitches in the Express Entry system. She mentions that since November 16, there have been “serious” Express Entry glitches. 

    As a result of these glitches, some applicants did not receive an invitation to apply in the latest Express Entry draw, which has had severe consequences for some applicants. 

    “IRCC should own up to the errors, apologize to those in the pool, and ideally find some way to rectify for those seriously impacted,” says Tamara.

    The applicants who did not receive an invitation in the latest Express Entry draw had a Comprehensive Ranking Score (CRS) above the minimum required score to receive an invitation. However, they were not invited. 

    Another glitch was that the applicants did not get the points for their spouse’s Canadian work experience. Generally, applicants receive 70 CRS points for a spouse’s Canadian work experience. 

    Furthermore, some applicants were marked eligible for the Canadian Experience Class and received an invitation to apply, but they did not possess the Canadian work experience to be eligible. 

    In addition, certain applicants received additional CRS points that they were not qualified for and were invited to apply based on those invalid scores. 

    IRCC is yet to respond to glitches

    IRCC is yet to respond to these ongoing glitches. Recently, several applications process has been moved online for faster processing. Yet, they continue to pose problems in the portal. 

    Good news is that certain Express Entry profiles just got lucky because of the above mentioned glitch. However, bad news is that certain deserving Express Entry profiles were left out in the latest Express Entry draw.

    We will continue to update you if there is any future update on the ongoing glitches in the Express Entry system to help you prepare for your immigration journey. 


  • Recommendations To Improve Canada Immigration Made By CIMM

    The Canadian House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration (CIMM) released a report, Promoting Fairness in Canada Immigration Decisions, where the Committee investigated visa outcomes in the immigration system. Upon examination, they found the system systematically and unjustifiably disfavours particular groups based on race and country of origin.

    As a result, the Committee makes wide-ranging suggestions to improve the immigration system, which consistently disadvantages some groups depending on race and country of origin.

    After hearing from several immigration advocates, lawyers, and settlement agency staff, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration decided to examine the immigration system. 



    CIMM’s Key recommendations for the immigration system 

    IRCC will share their response to the CIMM report and recommendations in a few months. Meanwhile, below are the key recommendations:

    • Visa officers should record applicant interviews to prevent miscommunication.
    • Ottawa should expand the extraordinary measures already available to Ukrainians, such as the provision allowing for the sponsorship of extended family members to people from other nations and regions experiencing humanitarian crises.
    • The Canadian government should establish a separate monitoring body responsible for the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), whose mandate should include dealing with racism and complaints concerning the agency. 
    • Immediate implementation of an Anti-Racism Quality Assurance process for decisions made by visa officers to investigate the impact of individual bias and systemic racism on decisions and refusal rates at visa offices
    • Requesting that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) dedicate more resources to process caregiver permanent residency applications from all streams faster. 

    As per IRCC, they train all officers to assess all applications equally and use the same criteria regardless of their country of origin. With the upcoming reports, they are looking to examine the impact on racialized applicants and minority community members. 

    CIMM highlights longer wait times in application processing 

    According to the Committee’s information, waiting for durations for various refugee groups may differ depending on shifting government priorities and quotas.

    A non-denominational charitable group called Remember Ministries’ executive director, Jennifer Miedema informed the Committee that fund allocation tells you where priorities are placed or who are the favoured demographics.

    Miedema says that “the uneven distribution of delays equals the uneven distribution of suffering,” adding that even holding out hope for final resettlement could be harmful over a prolonged period of waiting and delay.

    Further, she explains the impact on refugees, as their hopes are raised when they submit their applications, but they need to wait for a year or two without any response. As a result, it has a heavy impact on their mental health. 

    According to the Parliamentary Committee, the government should raise the overall number of refugees it welcomes to Canada during a crisis rather than backtrack on or delay receiving those whose applications are currently on hold. 

    They also want a complete racial equity assessment of Canada’s immigration and refugee system and to allocate more resources to process and give priority to privately sponsored refugees. 

    An increasing number of federal appeals 

    The number of people requesting federal appeals to become new Canadians has increased seven times in the last three years. 

    The court system is becoming overburdened with these judicial requests to contest allegedly unjust decisions made by visa officers and procedural delays. These applications are a judicial remedy in the immigration context that compels the IRCC to carry out a public legal obligation owed to an applicant.

    The recording of candidate interviews has been recommended as a potential solution to help with court-ordered redeterminations of unsuccessful applications. According to Vancouver-based immigration lawyer Victor Ing, IRCC needs to be more transparent and honest with clients to avoid more mandamus applications.

    Next, the Committee highlighted the increased wait times in the caregiver program. 

    The caregiver Program has the longest wait times

    The Live-in Caregiver Program saw some of the longest wait times before and after the pandemic. For example, the average time to process caregiver visas in 2020 was about 57 months and two days. While in 2021, the wait time was 68 months plus one day to process applications. 

    As a result, 15,621 applications were pending or anticipated to be pending in the Home Child-Care Provider Pilot backlog as of December 31, 2021. In addition, there were 1,639 more applications in the Live-in Care Program’s database.

    Arlene Ruiz, a licensed and regulated immigration consultant and a recruiter from Alexene Immigration & Employment Services, informed the Committee that many caregivers are from the Philippines. For them, the delays in application processing cause breakdowns in their marriages and children growing out of their dependent status. 

    Immigration attorney Steven Meurrens also mentions that the IRCC lacks transparency, which adds to the problem. For example, the processing times mentioned on IRCC are inaccurate. Further, the Access to Information Act shows that there have been no caregiver files processed since 2019.

    Following this month’s announcement by the federal Minister of Immigration, Sean Fraser, that Canada aims to settle 500,000 new immigrants by 2025, a new report by the Parliament has been released.

    The announcement comes after a record-breaking year for immigration to Canada in 2021, when more than 405,000 people arrived. The nation is also dealing with an unprecedented backlog of visa applications, with 2.2 million being processed by IRCC as of this month.

    Source: CIMM Report


  • Express Entry Draw Sent 4,750 New Invites For PR-November 23

    Today, Express Entry Draw invited 4,750 profiles to apply for permanent residency (PR). Applicants having a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score of 491 or above received the invitations.

    CRS cut off score has reduced by only 3 points as compared to Express Entry draw on November 9, 2022. Furthermore, number of invites remained same as in the previous draw. This is the 11th all program Express Entry draw this year.

    Below are the details of new All Program Express Entry draw.

    • Number of invitations issued: 4,750
    • Rank required to be invited to apply: 4,750 or above
    • Date and time of round: November 23, 2022 15:42:46 UTC
    • CRS score of lowest-ranked candidate invited: 491
    • Tie-breaking rule: October 13, 2022 11:22:17 UTC

    All program Express Entry draws include all the the Express Entry profiles under Canadian Experience Class (CEC), Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), and Federal Skilled Trades (FST). Additionally, it also consider profiles under any of the aforementioned categories having a provincial nomination.

    Next Express Entry draw cut off is projected to be around 485 as per CRS score distribution of candidates in the Express Entry pool as of November 22, 2022 listed below.



    CRS score distribution of candidates in the Express Entry pool as of November 22, 2022

    Express Entry

    Latest processing time for Express Entry as of November 22

    • Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) via Express Entry – 14 months
    • Canadian Experience Class – 19 months
    • Federal Skilled Worker Program – 27 months
    • Federal Skilled Trades Program – 49 months

    Full List Of Canada Express Entry Draws In 2022

    DateImmigration programInvitations issuedCRS Score Cut-Off
    November 23, 2022No Program Specified4,750491
    November 9, 2022No Program Specified4,750494
    October 26, 2022No Program Specified4,750496
    October 12, 2022No Program Specified4,250500
    September 28, 2022No Program Specified3,750504
    September 14, 2022No Program Specified3,250510
    August 31, 2022No Program Specified2,750516
    August 17, 2022No Program Specified2,250525
    August 3, 2022No Program Specified2,000533
    July 20, 2022No Program Specified1,750542
    July 6, 2022No Program Specified1,500557
    June 22, 2022Provincial Nominee Program636752
    June 8, 2022Provincial Nominee Program932796
    May 25, 2022Provincial Nominee Program590741
    May 11, 2022Provincial Nominee Program545753
    April 27, 2022Provincial Nominee Program829772
    April 13, 2022Provincial Nominee Program787782
    March 30, 2022Provincial Nominee Program919785
    March 16, 2022Provincial Nominee Program924754
    March 2, 2022Provincial Nominee Program1,047761
    February 16, 2022Provincial Nominee Program1,082710
    February 2, 2022Provincial Nominee Program1,070674
    January 19, 2022Provincial Nominee Program1,036745
    January 5, 2022Provincial Nominee Program392808
    Express Entry Draws – 2022

    What is Express Entry?

    Express Entry system is the fastest way to get Canadian Permanent Residency (PR). It has processing time of 6 months after submission of documents following the ITA.

    The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), a points-based methodology, is used by Express Entry to rate applicant profiles. The highest-scoring applicants are given an Invitation to Apply (ITA), after which they can submit an application for permanent residence.

    The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), and the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) all use Express Entry as their application management system (FSTP).

    Candidates for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) who are in the Express Entry pool are already qualified for at least one of these programmes.


  • Understanding New Changes To Express Entry With Bill C19 – All You Need To Know

    As Bill C-19 receives royal assent, the Express Entry system will undergo several amendments. These new amendments will bring changes to the Comprehensive Ranking System used to evaluate and rank individuals in the pool.  

    Express Entry includes all major economic immigration categories, such as the Canadian Experience Class, the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and a component of the Provincial Nominee Program, which will experience changes under Bill C-19 in 2023.  

    Another impact would be on the expression of interest that selects top-ranking candidates through regularly released Ministry instructions. These candidates are later invited to complete an immigration application.  

    To help you prepare for the new changes, below is the summary of amendments in Bill C-19 to the Express Entry system and fee waiver for some IRCC applications. 



    Summary of Bill C-19 Amendments To Express Entry

    Express Entry Selection based on new groups and categories 

    The new amendment will include ministerial instructions to bring additional filters to the Express Entry pool based on groups and categories rather than only immigration class. The ministerial instructions serve as the foundation for the rounds of invites.

    Express Entry ITAs to specify the stream in which the applicant must apply

    Another amendment is to create new categories with eligibility requirements for the purpose of ranking. Wherein if a foreign national qualifies for more than one class, the invitation to apply for permanent residence should specify the stream in which the applicant must apply. 

    Minister to specify an economic goal with each category 

    The new amendment also requires the Minister to specify in the instruction the economic goal that the newly established category will support. 

    Applicants who have lost points due to age can receive a permanent resident visa 

    The amendment establishes exclusions that allow Express Entry permanent residence visas to be given to candidates who have received an invitation to apply but would otherwise have lost eligibility due to changes in their circumstances. 

    For example, suppose an applicant has aged and lost points or lost qualification but has maintained a score equal to the minimum required to rank in the invitation round. In that case, they may be awarded a visa or other documents. 

    Minister’s report to include established category for foreign nationals

    The amendment adds that the Minister’s annual report to Parliament must include instructions to establish any category for foreign nationals in Express Entry. These instructions should include the economic goal it supports and the number of invitations issued under this category. 

    More details on Bill C-19 will be revealed, along with the new exact categories, its eligibility criteria in coming months.

    Changes Under Bill C-19 For Fees Of Some Applications

    The Canada Gazette typically outlines regulations and publishes immigration fees. However, for any changes in immigration fees, they need to go through regulatory impact analysis and have stakeholder input before implementation.  

    Moreover, processing applications for a temporary resident visa, a permanent resident visa, a work permit, a study permit, an extension of an authorization to remain in Canada as a temporary resident, and an authorization to stay 59 Bill C-19 in Canada as a permanent resident are already exempt from the Service Fees Act.

    Other fees for services, such as those associated with processing applications based on humanitarian and compassionate considerations, are exempt. These include applications submitted under public policy, services to obtain travel documents for permanent residents, including permanent resident cards, and services associated with the processing of applications to sponsor members of the family class.

    With Bill C-19, the following new service fees would become exempt:

    • Authorization for a permanent resident to return to Canada;
    • Rehabilitation for determining criminality and serious criminality 
    • Temporary status restoration and 
    • Temporary resident permits

  • New Immigration Plan Can Help With Alberta Labour Shortage

    As Canada intends to significantly increase the number of immigrants annually, groups in Alberta believe it will benefit businesses facing labour shortages. The immigration levels plan, which immigration minister Sean Fraser unveiled on November 1, 2022, calls for a massive influx of immigrants to enter the country: 465,000 in 2023, rising to 500,000 in 2025.

    Government has a strong focus on admitting people based on their employment qualifications or experience. Alberta-based organizations want the government to ease limitations on immigrants choosing lower-paying positions and to support organizations that assist newcomers’ resettlement in ensuring that the new Canadians can genuinely help with the labour shortage.



    Calgary Chamber of Commerce Report on Immigration 

    The Calgary Chamber of Commerce released a report outlining the crucial role immigration plays in easing labour shortages. 

    President and CEO of the Calgary Chamber of Commerce, Deborah Yedlin, explained that whether you work in the service industry, technology, energy, or the healthcare industry, everyone is searching for that last unit of labour. Immigration has become important to address the talent shortage that every business faces across the country.

    Regarding the latest immigration levels plan, Yedlin accepts the new plan but suggests expanding the options to low-wage workers rather than solely focusing on highly skilled, technically trained experts. 

    According to Yedlin, there is a bit of a catch-22 with programs like the Alberta Opportunity Stream since you require prior work experience and language proficiency, which limits the pool of immigrants who can apply.

    She explains that the government needs to figure out how to ensure that the ability to come and work is offered as an opportunity for a broader proportion of the immigrant population than it already is, including low-wage workers.

    Affordable housing to attract immigrants

    According to Randy Boissonault, a member of parliament for Edmonton Centre, Alberta’s lower cost of living can draw people.

    Since all of the communities in Alberta have done an excellent job of continuing to create housing, Edmonton and Calgary are at the top of the list for affordable housing nationwide, according to Boissonault.

    He anticipates that the hundreds of thousands of newcomers will be able to fill employment gaps in the IT industry.

    On meeting the Alberta Machine Institute in the heart of Edmonton, they told Boissonault that many of their partners are searching for computer scientists and mathematicians who can significantly advance the field of machine learning and artificial intelligence.

    The provincial government oversees a program whose objective is to hasten the processing of visas for foreign workers hired by IT firms in Alberta.

    Yedlin claimed that because Albertans frequently lack the qualifications required for a position, businesses are forced to rely heavily on immigration. She emphasizes the tech positions that have remained unfilled for a considerable time despite being advertised for months in Calgary. 

    Newcomer settlement organizations need more support.

    Rispah Tremblay, senior manager of settlement services at the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers (EMCN), which assists newcomers in settling in the capital area, said the immigration levels plan presents some difficulties for other organizations.

    Such that with increasing numbers, newcomer settlement organizations need additional resources, explained Tremblay. 

    Tremblay says that EMCN would require additional funding to pay employees who handle cases, assist clients in finding housing, and teach languages.

    New immigrants might not be able to integrate into the Canadian workforce without the assistance of the staff members who assist newcomers with their settlement needs.

    There must be an additional help to settle and get the right training or support they need as soon as they get here, she said. It will allow them to integrate and start working immediately.

    Tremblay is also worried that the housing supply would start to run out with everyone migrating here. Although she hasn’t heard anything from the federal government on funding to support service expansion, she anticipates that discussions will begin in the spring.


  • New NOC Codes: Step-Wise Guide To Find Your NOC

    New NOC codes: On November 16, IRCC switches to the new 2021 National Occupational Classification (NOC) version in alignment with Employment and Social Development of Canada (ESDC). It implies that the NOC 2016 skill type and skill level framework (NOC 0, A, B, C, and D) will now be represented by new 6-category system representing the training, education, experience, and responsibilities (TEER) required to work in an occupation.

    As a result, the previous four-digit codes will become five digits under the new NOC 2021. It will also impact the eligibility criteria for all programs that use NOC. To prepare for these changes, you can learn the following in this article:

    Steps to find new NOC code 

    Step 1: Visit the National Occupational Classification (NOC) official website. 

    NOC 2021 and TEER

    Step 2: You can search by job title or NOC code on this page. If you want to search by job title, look for the “Version” section, then click on the box below it that says “NOC 2016 Version 1.3.” Then, it will open a drop-down menu and select the latest “NOC 2021 Version 1.3.”

    NOC 2021 and TEER

    Step 3: Once you select the new NOC 2021 version, enter your job title to find your NOC 2021 code and TEER category. 

    NOC 2021 and TEER

    Below is an example of a job titled Marketing Coordinator. You also view other matching job titles. 

    NOC 2021 and TEER


    Understanding New NOC categories

    All programs that previously used skill types or levels will now use NOC 2021 codes and TEER categories. 

    Most positions will remain in the TEER category, corresponding to the skill level in the table below. However, certain jobs may change to other TEER categories. The most significant change is the subdivision of Skill Level B jobs that will now become TEER 2 or TEER 3 jobs.

    The table below explains the distribution between skill types or levels and corresponding TEER categories. 

    NOC 2021 and TEER
    NOC 2021 and TEER

    Immigration Programs that new NOC will affect 

     Generally, all programs that have used NOC skill types or levels to invite applicants will be affected. Therefore, all the programs below will switch to using NOC 2021 codes and TEER levels. 

    Additionally, several occupations will become eligible and ineligible under specific programs due to the new NOC 2021 implementation. 

    Frequently Asked Questions regarding new TEER system

    Do you need to update your Express Entry profile as new NOC is implemented? 
    Suppose you are an Express Entry candidate who submitted your profile before November 16 but has not yet received an Invitation to Apply (ITA). Then, you must update your Express Entry profile with your new NOC 2021 code and TEER category. 

    If you receive an ITA before November 16, you can submit your Express Entry application using the NOC 2016 system. In addition, you can also refer to the NOC code mentioned on your ITA receipt and submit your application accordingly. However, there is no need for you to update to NOC 2021 if you received an ITA before November 16. 

    How will new NOC affect CRS scores? 
    The points distribution would be similar to what it has been with NOC 2016. Such as, so far, Express Entry applicants with arranged employment in Skill Levels 0, A and B have received 50 additional points. 

    With NOC 2021, applicants will receive 50 additional points for arranged employment provided their NOC is in TEER 0, 1, 2 or 3. 

    Similarly, you will continue to receive points for Canadian education. However, your work experience must be in occupations that are TEER 0, 1, 2 or 3. 

    How can you prepare for new NOC? 
    To be prepared, you can be mindful of the new changes in the TEER lead statements and primary duties. Although most duties may be similar, your work experience letter must reflect the duties mentioned in your new NOC 2021 code and TEER category. 

    Moreover, you must continue to match the duties in your NOC 2021 occupation if you want to claim points for the skilled experience inside and outside Canada.