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The Future of the Quebec Skilled Worker Program

Did you know: When the new Quebec Skilled Worker program is fully unveiled (click here to find out what we do know), it could be your last chance to apply under a first-come first-served type of immigration program. This first-come first-served way of processing applications is the type of system that most of you are familiar with. It was the hallmark of all Canadian Immigration programs until the federal government implemented the Express Entry program earlier this year, which irrevocably changed all that.

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What is First-Come First-Served?

First-come first-served is an expression in English that means people will receive something or be dealt with in the order in which they ask or arrive. What first-come first-served means in an immigration sense is that you do not have to compete with other applicants to get your visa. In other words, the government tells you the requirements and if you meet them, you are clear to apply and you should be granted your visa.

This is in direct contrast to the Express Entry system, which puts all prospective newcomers into a pool, ranks them according to their skills and credentials and then selects only the best and brightest from the pool. Only applicants who scored high enough in the ranking system are invited to apply for Canadian Permanent Residence.

What Does this Mean for You?

First-come first-served is how Immigration Quebec currently accepts applicants. They will continue to accept applicants under a first-come first-served basis for 2015 but for 2016, things are not looking great. Based on comments from Quebec’s Immigration Minister Kathleen Weil, come 2016, Immigration Quebec will likely abandon the first-come first-served model of accepting applicants and replace it with a system similar to the Express Entry model. Therefore, in all likelihood come 2016, applicants applying to Quebec will have to compete with other applicants for your visa.

Immigration Quebec expects to make major changes to their immigration programs to bring them in line with the current state of the Canadian workforce. These changes will no doubt make it more difficult to apply by making you compete with other applicants rather than reviewing your file on its own merits. There is also talk of making French language proficiency a mandatory requirement, which under the current regulations, it is not.

Why Apply Now?

If you are eligible to apply now, you should do so and do it soon. This could be the end of the golden age of Canadian Immigration. Do not assume that if you are qualified to submit an application now, you will be forever. Demand for Canadian Immigration is high, application quotas fill quickly, and programs can change their requirements or selection criteria.

What are the Requirements?

Before you consider anything else, you need to know if you are eligible. Completing our free online assessment form will allow us to review your qualifications and let you know your Canadian Immigration options.

In general, the requirements of the QSW program are not difficult to obtain:

  1. Identity documents (birth certificates, if you are married then a marriage certificate as well)
  2. Travel documents (valid and up-to-date passport copies and copies of residence visas if you are not in your country of citizenship)
  3. Educational documents (transcripts and diplomas)
  4. Some employment documents might need to be provided initially but that will depend on your qualifications.


You should note that you will need IELTS test results (academic or general) in order to be granted your visa. The test results can be submitted later in the process so you can prepare for your language test while your application is processing.

The Current QSW Program:

  1. A job offer is NOT required
  2. You can apply from anywhere in the world (even if you are working overseas)
  3. There are no settlement funds (“show money”) that need to be demonstrated
  4. In the end, you will receive Canadian Permanent Residence, which is the equivalent of a US Green Card
  5. Processing times should be 14-18 months and the program reopens on April 1, 2015


Over 50,000 newcomers move to Quebec every year as Canadian Permanent Residents. Don’t you think it is time you call Canada home? Contact us to get started on your application to Canada today!

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The Canadim Team!

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