Canada – The New Destination for Immigrants after the U.S.?

Over the last few decades, many youngsters of the country have dreamt of flying off to the United States of America to pursue their dream jobs and build an excellent career. The U.S. has also welcomed a lot of talent from various countries and nurtured knowledge and skills through its renowned universities and job opportunities. However, the scene has not remained the same for a few years. Thanks to Donald Trump and his attempt to impress his citizens!

The recent developments in the U.S. visa policy have put many Indians who are working in the U.S. in a fix. Many future on-site job opportunities have been nullified shattering the dreams of thousands. Adding to this is the COVID-19 spread.

A Bambridge Accountants report states that more than 5,800 Americans gave up their American citizenship during the first half of 2020. The possible reasons listed in the survey report were the way the pandemic is being handled and other political policies being implemented during recent times. Another major factor is the high fee collected by the U.S. government to renew the citizenship, i.e. USD 2,350. It is predicted that the trend of giving up citizenship will only swell going forward.

With too many stringent policies, the U.S. is losing its charm and is persuading other nationals to consider moving back to their home countries or find a new hotspot that allows people to live their dream. 

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) stated that the green card grants (to get permanent resident status in the U.S.) had fallen sharply by 47.4% in the fiscal year 2019 as compared to the previous fiscal year. Also, 9.2 lakh Indians were caught up in the green card backlog in both family and employment categories as of April 2018. Currently, a cap of 7% has been declared for Indians in terms of issuing green cards every year, which is very low.

Also Read: Paid Leave for Periods Ignites Concerns of Gender Bias While Hiring

How does green card approval affect life?

Your green card application may be stuck in the queue and take a startlingly long time to get approved. Some people have gone through more than five H-1B visa extensions within a decade, making the time you stay there stressful.

The unfortunate part is that the pending status of your green card approval can negatively affect your budding career. Since an individual’s green card petition is stuck with the employer, he/she may find it difficult to switch jobs. Worst still, it can pose a threat in moving to a managerial position as employers remain unsure if they have to invest in grooming a person who may or may not stay in the country longer.

What next?

Now that the parade towards the world’s most significant force is losing its shine, people around the globe are starting to look at Canada. The primary reasons for choosing Canada as the next big destination to give shape to budding dreams are:

  • Hassle-free immigration for foreigners
  • Better career opportunities
  • Freedom to choose the nature of work 
  • Convenience for settlement

Approximately, 9 lakh Indians with H-1B, L1, and H4 EAD are living in the U.S. Tens of thousands of Indians have been relocating from the U.S. to Canada every year. The trend has already started. The experts suggest that they relocate rather than stay in the U.S. 

The beauty of Canada is that Express Entry is available and it takes less than a year for people to get PR status. Just apply online for the status. You don’t even have to consult an immigration attorney for this! The contrasting ease of process in Canada has attracted many individuals who have been distressed with all the work around the green card application and its rejection over small issues. 

People who have moved to Canada from the U.S. appreciate the open communication with authorities in the former country as compared to the latter. Also, their public health insurance system is commendable. 

The Express Entry System

All Canadian immigration applications will be categorised into one of the three streams:

  • Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) Programme
    An individual must have a minimum of 12 months” of part-time or full-time work experience. The person must also meet language requirements in English or French by taking a test. A minimum score of 67 out of 100 points must be secured on the FSW selection grid to be eligible for the program.

  • Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
    If you have worked in Canada on a valid work permit for at least a year and meet the minimum language requirements in English or French, you can apply under the CEC category.

  • Federal Skilled Trades (FST) Programme
    If you have a minimum of two years” experience in a skilled trade, meet the language requirements in English or French, and have a Canadian certificate to practice trade in Canada or have a job offer in your skilled trade in Canada, you are considered eligible under the FST programme.

When an application is categorised successfully, the applicant will be eligible for Canadian permanent residence.

Since you have, now, discovered a new destination to build your career and achieve things in the field of your interest, the sky’s the limit. Do not stop dreaming, as dreams are the food for the soul!

For any clarifications/feedback on the topic, please contact the writer at apoorva.n@cleartax.in

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