Ontario Express Entry: French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream

This stream targets French-Speaking skilled workers with strong English language abilities looking to establish themselves and settle in the province of Ontario. 

To be considered under this Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) stream, candidates must qualify for the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s (IRCC) federal Express Entry pool under either the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) or the Canadian Experience Class (CEC). Candidates may not apply directly to this stream. Instead, they must first receive a Notification of Interest (NOI) from the OINP based on their Express Entry profile.  

The OINP searches the Express Entry pool and identifies potential candidates who meet the criteria of Ontario’s French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream (see below). 

Candidates will be identified by the OINP will receive an NOI, which will invite them to apply to the OINP for nomination under the French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream. From this point, selected candidates have 45 calendar days to apply to the OINP under this stream. If their application is approved, candidates will be notified of their nomination by the OINP, which they can accept and use to apply to permanent residence visa for Canada.  

Minimum Eligibility Requirements for French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream:

  • Meet the eligibility requirements for one of the Canada’s Federal High Skilled programs: Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP) or Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
  • Candidates applying through the FSWP must meet the pass mark of 67 points based on IRCC’s Federal Skilled Worker selection factors: language skills, education, work experience, age, arranged employment in Canada, and adaptability.
  • Meet the stream’s work experience requirements.
  • Language proficiency level of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 7 or higher in French and a CLB 6 or higher in English in all four components (speaking, reading, writing, and listening) 
  • Have a Canadian Bachelor’s, Master’s or PhD degree OR an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report produced by a designated organization .
  • Hold legal status in Canada (and maintain it until the time of nomination) if they are residing in Canada at the time of applying 
  • Must have sufficient funds to cover settlement costs in Ontario.

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Under Canadian Experience Class 

Candidates who choose to be assessed against the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) criteria must:

  • Have at least one year of cumulative, full-time employment experience, or part-time equivalent, in a NOC 0, A, or B occupation in Canada in the three years prior to the date of the NOI from the OINP.
  • Full-time work consists of at least 30 hours of work over a period of one week in one job and consists of at least 1,560 hours of paid employment in one year. Volunteer work and unpaid internships do not count as valid work. 
  • Work experience must be equal to one year. There can be gaps in employment and work experience does not have to be continuous (back-to-back).  
  • Candidates must have held legal status while working in Canada.
  • Paid work experience obtained while studying full-time at a post-secondary institution (i.e. co-op work term) or during periods of self-employment are not eligible when assessed under the CEC.

What is the Application Process French-Speaking Skilled Worker? 

Foreign nationals must have a valid Express Entry profile and a NOI letter in order to apply for this OINP Express Entry-aligned stream. The OINP searches the Express Entry pool and identifies potential candidates who may meet the eligibility criteria of the French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream.

A NOI is valid for 45 calendar days, which means that an application to the OINP must be submitted within 45 days. 

Candidates in the Express Entry pool who have been issued a NOI are advised to become familiar with the program’s criteria and document checklists in advance in order to be prepared to submit an application for the stream under which they qualify. 

Step by step process French-Speaking Skilled Worker 

  • Step 1: Satisfy eligibility criteria of the Federal Skilled Worker Class or the Canadian Experience Class.
  • Step 2: Create an Express Entry profile.
  • Step 3: The OINP searches the pool and identifies candidates in the Express Entry pool.
  • Step 4: Receive a NOI letter from the OINP.
  • Step 5: Apply to the OINP under the French-Speaking Skilled Worker Stream within 45 calendar days after receiving the NOI from Ontario.
  • Step 6: If nominated, candidates obtain a Nomination Approval Letter and an OINP Certificate of Nomination by email. Candidates have 30 calendar days to accept the nomination in the Express Entry system.
  • Step 7: If a nomination is accepted, Express Entry candidates are awarded an additional 600 Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points and an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence at a future draw from the pool.
  • Step 8: Submit an application for Canadian permanent residence to IRCC within 60 days of receiving the ITA.

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