What is the Provincial Nominee Program and how can I take advantage of it to obtain Canadian permanent residence?

Frequently Asked Questions

Simply put, a Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) is an economic immigration program that allows participating provinces and territories to nominate candidates for immigration to Canada.

These programs were established by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in an effort to allow provinces and territories the ability to nominate, for permanent residence, those individuals who have the skills, education and experience to contribute to the economic growth of that province or territory, and most importantly, those individuals who wish to settle in that region.

The following provinces and territories participate in PNPs:

  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Manitoba
  • New Brunswick
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Northwest Territories
  • Nova Scotia
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Saskatchewan
  • Yukon

There are two different processes for applying to PNPs: a paper-based process and an electronic process. Each province and territory has its own PNP streams and eligibility criteria. It is important to understand these criteria and the specific requirements of the province or territory you wish to live in before choosing an application process.

Paper-Based Process

Each province or territory has its own streams and criteria that can change without notice. You should visit the website of the province or territory that interests you to find out the requirements to get a nomination certificate. You will submit a paper application to that province or territory indicating which of their PNP streams you want to be considered for. The province or territory will review your application. If you meet their criteria, they will issue you a nomination certificate. You must submit a copy of the nomination certificate when you apply to IRCC for permanent residence.

From within Express Entry pool

Provinces and territories use their portal to search for candidates who are already in the Express Entry pool. Each province and territory can search the Express Entry pool using a combination of searchable fields, such as language levels, education, work experience, provincial or territory certificate of qualification, etc. If a province or territory is interested in a candidate, that person will receive a system-generated message in their online account that advises them that the province or territory would like to consider them for nomination. Candidates must visit the IRCC website to find contact information for the province or territory.

Express Entry candidates who have a validated nomination from a province or territory receive an additional 600 CRS points, and are normally issued an invitation to apply (ITA) at the next eligible round of invitations, subject to that provincial or territory’s overall nomination space and IRCC’s ministerial instructions for each particular round of invitations.

We can help you navigate the maze of programs and requirements. For a detailed assessment of your immigration options, contact our Canadian Immigration Lawyers for a consultation by emailing us or by calling 416-847-3347.