Coronavirus and Canadian Immigration 2020: What to Expect Next?

It has been a little over a month since the COVID-19 virus started seriously affecting the lives of us here in Canada and the west. We’ve all had to change the way we live, do business, study, and travel, and it doesn’t look like things will return to normal for some time.

While Canada and many other countries implement measures to protect their people and businesses from the pandemic and subsequent economic struggles, new and tighter measures on travel have been imposed.

As an entrepreneur, business owner, or foreign professional, we know you are looking forward and anticipating what you need to do to be in the best position to take advantage of the opportunities that come out of catastrophic times like these.

While times will be hard, we’re likely to see some positive changes on the immigration front in Canada that will provide you with the opportunity you’re looking for. Here’s what to expect in immigration in a post-COVID-19 Canada:

1. Approval Rates for Businesses Will Likely Increase Significantly

If you’ve been looking for your opportunity to enter the Canadian market, your time is coming. As Canada’s unemployment rates skyrocket as businesses struggle to stay afloat with little revenue coming in, the government will likely be looking to approve new businesses in an effort to attract capital and to give the economy a jump-start.

While some Canadian companies may struggle to gain approval for the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) applications which require proof of shortage in the labour market, it seems that Owner-Operator LMIA applications will be welcomed by the EDSC officers and processed on a priority basis.

You can also expect that the Temporary Foreign Worker Program to be modified to reflect the post-COVID world, and a number of industries that are deemed as “essential” may find it easier to obtain LMIAs to bring more foreign workforce to Canada. For example, the government plans to lower the advertising requirements for businesses involved in agriculture, food production, and logistics in order to bring essential workers to Canada rapidly.

Thus, if you are an experienced business person who is ready to take advantage of the resurgence of the Canadian economy once coronavirus has passed, Canada’s business immigration programs will likely be the fast-track you’re looking for.

2. The Points Necessary to Be Selected in the Express Entry Program Will Likely Drop

Express Entry is one method through which immigrants can seek permanent residence in the country fast, and, perhaps understandably, Canada will probably fall behind its immigration goals for 2020, which aims to combat the ageing population and low fertility rate in the country. Already, we’ve seen the lowest minimum CRS score since October of last year, at 455 and we expect this to drop further.

Under the 2020-2022 Immigration Levels Plan, the government is looking to give permanent residency to 341,000 people this year, 351,000 in 2021, and 361,000 in 2022.

Given the higher admission targets for Canada’s three Federal Skilled immigration programs over the next couple of years, it’s expected that the IRCC will hold more frequent draws with lower CRS scores, and that means more opportunities to gain permanent residency for those candidates who are already in the Express Entry pool.

3. New Immigration Programmes Will Probably Emerge

In order for the government to meet its immigration goals and maintain sustainable levels of immigration into the country, the Canadian governments (federal and provincial) will have to invent new immigration programmes in order to attract skilled people and provide additional pathways for foreign professionals and entrepreneurs to gain permanent residence.

The Agri-Food Immigration Pilot is one example of this (though it’s been postponed until May, while the government focuses on battling Coronavirus), which is a program that will allow seasonal agricultural workers to apply for permanent residence.

Provinces will likely take partial control and play a more active role in attracting new immigrants, so it’s likely that new provincial nominee programmes will emerge and implemented. What does this mean for you? It means you should register with the provincial nominee program of your choice in order to boost your chances for permanent residence in the future.

4. Immigration Applications Will Spike and Cause Delays

Believe it or not, but right now is a great time to apply for Canadian immigration. Right now, many individuals are scared to proceed with their immigration plans and prefer to wait until the situation improves. The number of immigration applications has probably dropped in the past few weeks and the immigration authorities have slowed down the processing of the applications. This means that once the virus crisis is over, there will be a huge influx of new applications and the Canadian immigration system will likely be clogged. Being in a situation where you have to wait for the processing of your application for long months (if not years) is not ideal, which makes NOW a great time to apply. If you plan to apply for Canadian immigration or work permit any time soon, we recommend turning off your panic mode and proceeding with your application in order to get your application processed in a timely fashion. Luckily, the IRCC has confirmed that it is still accepting and processing immigration applications, although all applicants should expect delays with processing times.

It’s highly unlikely that the IRCC will return to pre-COVID-19 activity all at once, but it doesn’t have to stop your immigration journey.

So, What Can You Do Now?

So, what can you do to make the most of these immigration opportunities and avoid being caught up in the administrative backlog?

  1. Take advantage of this time and proceed with your business immigration application – if you know you want to relocate to Canada, don’t wait to see what programs emerge post-pandemic. Now is the time to act on your plans and the likelihood is you’ll get approval far sooner than if you wait.
  2. Get in the Express Entry Pool – the CRS score will continue to drop, so it’s a good idea to throw yourself into the candidates’ pool now. This is a great chance to gain Canadian permanent residence quickly and easily.
  3. Things Are Slow, But You Don’t Have to Stop – Coronavirus will be a problem for some time to come, so there’s no point in waiting to move forward with your plans. Stay informed, keep an eye on the news, and put your confident step forward for Canadian residence.

Sobirovs Law Firm offers hassle-free immigration to Canada for high-skilled professionals, business owners, entrepreneurs and investors.

Do you need individual strategic advice for moving forward?

Click here to book an appointment with one of our experienced immigration lawyers!

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Immigration to Canada can be very complicated for businesses, business owners, and foreign employees. Hiring business immigration lawyers with the skill, experience, and patience is often crucial to successfully navigating this complex process. The experienced professionals at Sobirovs Law Firm offer tailored legal services in all business and corporate immigration matters. Contact us for more information on how we can help you meet your immigration needs.

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From the initial consultation to the successful acquisition of my permanent resident card, the entire process was seamless and stress free.A big thank you to the entire Sobirovs team, especially Yulia, and Farouk. They demonstrated exceptional expertise and professionalism throughout, guiding me with precision and clarity. Their commitment to providing personalized and thorough assistance made a significant impact on my overall experience. Thank you, Sobirovs law firm for your exceptional service and for making my journey to permanent residency a smooth and gratifying experience.
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My family (5) have chosen Sobirovs for our ICT visa application, and now we confidently recommend them! Right from the start you will be assigned a special team within their firm who will be busy with your plans, needs and documents. The process is organized very efficiently, what is crucial when you run your own business on your side. Once the documents submitted to IRCC, the pre-submission team entrust your case to post-submission group, who monitor the progress and keep you constantly updated what's going on with the case. As a result, our ICT application was approved in just several weeks from submission, just wooow. Thank you and thumbs up for Monique, Mariam, Owen, Madina, and Ms. Feruza who was our lead lawyer. Sobirovs is your smart choice, they know how to do the rest.
Muzammil Habib
Muzammil Habib
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Rahul C
Exceptional service of the utmost quality and professionalism. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the entire team, with special acknowledgments to Nity, Judy, Feruza, Owen, and Medina, for their invaluable assistance in securing the approval of my application. I am sincerely appreciative of the outstanding service and unwavering support provided. This is by far the best immigration law firms in Canada who work with complete transparency.
Ulugbek Holmatov
Ulugbek Holmatov
Great job 👏👏👏👏 Great leader, Rakhmad Sobirov for his leadership skills and great managers: Feruza, Monique, Mariam, Owen, Madina for their respective professionalism 👌👌👌 Well organized and professional law team for Canadian immigration. I really enjoyed with my Canadian business visa process. I really appreciate Sobirovs Law firm for their great service and experience. P.S.: This law firm was selected by Our company among top 5 law firms for Canadian business immigration process Great successes🎉
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Thomas Bulmer
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Jason Tsarouhas
Jason Tsarouhas
Mariam and her team have helped us migrate our entire workforce from Australia to Canada. We couldn't have been more prepared by the time we made it to the border. The team were accessible, informative and detail orientated which is exactly what you want when you have stresses of moving your company and life to the other side of the world! A HUGE thank you to the team for their efforts so far and future work we'll be doing together! Jason, Learning Online!
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Victor Arakaki
We're incredibly grateful for the fantastic work done by the entire Sobirovs team!. While our work permit application had its share of challenges, Feruza, an outstanding lawyer with extensive expertise in business immigration, played a pivotal role. Her leadership and guidance were so important in getting our Work Permits approval. We must also acknowledge the exceptional contributions of Judy Lee, Nitty, Monique, Rachel and the rest of the team who supported us on this journey. It's clear that we'll continue to entrust Feruza and her team with any of our future legal needs. We have full confidence in Feruza and her team and highly recommend their services.
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