Pathways for Immigration in Canada

Immigrating to Canada can be complicated and overwhelming.

June 29, 2022

Written in conjunction with Legal Roots

Canada is a popular destination for immigration, and with good reason. It’s a wonderful country filled with beautiful landscapes and great people. If you’re looking to immigrate to Canada, there are many pathways to get there, depending on how long you want to stay. In general, there are three common ways to immigrate to Canada.

Temporarily living in Canada

If you’re looking to come to Canada for a temporary job, there are a few options to consider:

  1. Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program. You typically need to have a valid job offer to be eligible for this program. Your Canadian employer will most likely have to apply for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).
  2. International Mobility Program. Like the TFW program, you will need a valid job offer. However, your employer will not need to apply for an LMIA.
  3. Post-Graduate Work Permit (PGWP). You can apply for a PGWP if you are a recent graduate from a public post-secondary institution or an eligible private post-secondary school. You can apply for a PGWP without a job offer.
  4. International Experience Canada (IEC). Also known as a working holiday, IEC allows for a one or two-year open work permit without a valid job offer.

If you’re looking to come to Canada to study permanently, you generally need to apply for a study permit. However, there are some special circumstances where a study permit isn’t necessary. 

Alternatively, if you’re coming to Canada to visit family for an extended stay, you generally have two options:

  1. Temporary Visitor Visa. You might have to apply for a temporary visitor visa depending on your citizenship.
  2. Super Visa for Family Reunification. The Parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens or permanent residents can apply for these visas.

Living in Canada Permanently

When it comes to immigrating to Canada permanently, you generally have three options:

  1. Economic Class. Programs like Express Entry, Caregivers, Provincial Nominees, Start-Up Visa Class, or Self-Employed Person Class provide ways for people to apply for permanent residency.
  2. Sponsorship. Canadians who are citizens or permanent residents can sponsor family members for permanent residency.
  3. Refugee Status. Canada recognizes refugee status to people in need of protection and will offer permanent residency.


There are a few ways to become a Canadian citizen. If you were born outside of Canada but your parents are Canadian citizens, you can easily apply for citizenship. If you have no Canadian relatives, you must meet specific criteria.

  • You must be a permanent resident of Canada.
  • You must have physically lived in Canada for at least 1,095 days prior to applying.
  • You must demonstrate adequate knowledge of English or French (if you’re between 18 and 54 years old).
  • You must demonstrate knowledge of Canada and the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship (again, if you’re between 18 and 54).
  • You may need to file taxes for at least three previous years.

The Immigration Help You Deserve

Immigrating to Canada can be complicated and overwhelming, with lots of paperwork and legal hoops you need to jump through. It’s a lot for one person to take on, especially if they don’t have a law background. At Lawbrokr, we’ve made finding an immigration lawyer simple and straightforward. You’ll be presented with recommended lawyers and given the opportunity to communicate with them at your convenience. We believe everyone has the right to legal representation, and we’re on a mission to make it easier and more accessible.