How do I apply to immigrate to Canada?

The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) sets immigration policy and makes decisions about who can enter Canada.

If you want to immigrate to Canada, you must apply and your application must go through IRCC. The application form you must use depends on the immigration category you choose.

Please note: As of July 31, 2018, persons applying for a visitor visa, study or work permit (except for U.S. citizens) or permanent residence will be required to provide fingerprints and a photograph. To facilitate repeat travel to Canada, these visa or permit applicants will only be required to provide their biometric data once every 10 years.


Visa-exempt foreign nationals coming to Canada as tourists only require an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA).

Immigration Categories
You can apply for permanent residence in the following categories:

Skilled Workers and Professionals
Family class immigrants (sponsorship)
Investors, entrepreneurs, and self-employed workers
Canadian Experience Class
Provincial Nominee Program
Temporary residence
You can apply for temporary residence in the following categories:

International Students
Temporary Foreign Workers
Applications are always evaluated according to specific needs and regulations in force.

You may be required to meet certain health and safety requirements. For example, you may be required to undergo a medical examination or produce any records of arrest or conviction.

IRCC may also want to meet with you for an interview or obtain other documents.

How to Apply
Most immigration applications are made from outside Canada, but in some circumstances, some are made from within Canada.
Please visit the IRCC website for more information on immigration applications, including where to send your application.
Normally, you must pay a fee for each application. If your application is refused, you will not receive a refund. Information and other assistance provided by IRCC offices is free of charge.
If you are in Canada, you can call the IRCC call center for more information about your situation: 1-888-242-2100. You can also get help from a settlement agency. To find a settlement agency in your area, please consult Services near you.


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