Are you interested in visiting or moving to Canada?

Known for its high living standards, strong educational institutions as  well as its diversity and excellent health care system, Canada is ranked as one of the best places to live in the world. It also has a long and proud history of welcoming immigrants through its borders in hopes of them becoming new Canadians.

HALLSTONE LAW’s immigration practice is dedicated to assisting those who wish to visit or relocate permanently to Canada. We work with Canadian – and  foreign based clients, and look forward to bringing our skills, dedication, compassion and expertise into serving you.

There are numerous ways to immigrate to Canada; in order to simplify the process, we evaluate each case on its merits to determine the best route to Canadian residency and citizenship. For business clients,  we are skilled in preparing labour market impact assessments (LMIAs) and work permit applications. This eases the process through which non-Canadians can be legally employed to work in Canada.

Express Entry

Which federal Immigration program best suits your skills and qualifications?

Federal Skilled Worker Program? Federal Skilled Trades Program? Canadian Experience?

Express Entry is a screening system that places all eligible candidates in pool.  Those with the highest rankings (based on specific criteria) are invited to apply for permanent residency.

Family Class

Do you wish to reunite with your loved ones?

Under this immigration class, you can bring your relatives to join you in Canada.

A Canadian citizen or permanent resident can sponsor his or her spouse, common-law or conjugal partner, or dependant child to immigrate to Canada as a permanent resident.

Refugee Protection Claims

Do you wish to appeal a decision?

Are you making a refugee claim?

Canada offers refugee protection in certain circumstances to those who fear persecution.  If you feel that you face the risk of serious harm if you go back to your home country or the country where you normally live, you may be able to seek protection in Canada as a refugee.

Live-In Caregiver Program

Will you be working with children or people with high medical needs?

There are two streams to permanent residence under this program.

Live-in caregivers are individuals who are qualified to provide care for children, elderly persons or persons with disabilities in private homes without supervision.  Live-in caregivers must live in the private home where they work in Canada.

Click on the tabs to learn more!

Our Immigration Law practice covers a wide range of services designed to suit the needs of our domestic and foreign-based clients.

Overview of the Express Entry System

The Canadian government processes all economic immigration through the Express Entry portal. If you are applying under the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program or the Canadian Experience Program, your application is automatically processed through the Express Entry system. Express Entry processing is optional for Provincial Nominee applicants. Under the Express Entry system, qualified applicants are required to complete an online profile and are assessed under a points-based system meant to assess the applicant’s ability to succeed in Canada. A maximum of 1200 points will be awarded as follows:

  • 500 points: Core Human Capital Factors, including age, education, language and Canadian experience 
  • 100 points: Skill Transferability, including foreign qualifications, degrees and work experience
  • 600 points: Positive Labour Market Impact Assessment or Provincial Nomination Certificate

Applicants accompanied by a spouse or common-law partner will receive 100 fewer points in Core Human Capital Factors and Skill Transferability with those points instead being assigned to the accompanying spouse or common-law partner in order to make up the comprehensive total.

Applicants who do not already hold job offers supported by a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment will also be required to register with the Job Bank.  The Job Bank will assist applicants in connecting with prospective employers in support of their application.

The Express Entry pool of applicants is reviewed regularly and top ranked candidates, as well as those holding job offers supported by a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment, will receive an Invitation to Apply for Permanent Residency. Once invited, candidates will have 60 days to complete their application.

Canadian Experience Class

The Canadian Experience Class allows foreign nationals who have been working in Canada for a period of one year to apply for permanent residence on the basis of their Canadian experience. In order to be eligible, applicants must have a minimum of one year of full-time skilled work experience in Canada in the three years before applying, meet certain language criteria, and plan to live outside of Quebec.

Federal Skilled Worker Program

The minimum requirements to qualify under the Federal Skilled Workers program include:

  • At least one year (1,560 hours total/30 hours per week) continuous full-time or an equivalent in part time within the last 10 years, and be at NOC skill type 0, A or B
  • Employment must be paid work (volunteer work, unpaid internships do not count)
  • Minimum language level of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) of 7
  • Have a Canadian secondary (high school) or post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree, OR
    • A completed foreign credential, AND
    • An Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report from an agency approved by CIC showing your foreign education is equal to a completed Canadian secondary (high school) or post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree
  • Meet all the conditions set out in the six selection factors (language proficiency in English/French, education, work experience, age, valid job offer, and adaptability)
  • Proof of settlement funds, unless you are currently able to legally work in Canada AND you have a valid job offer from an employer in Canada;
  • You must be admissible to Canada;
  • You must plan to live outside the province of Quebec.

Federal Skilled Trades Program

The minimum requirements to be eligible include:

  • Have at least two years of full-time (or an equal amount of part-time) work experience in a skilled trade within the five years before you apply;
  • Meet the job requirements for that skilled trade as set out in the National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill type B except for needing a certificate of qualification;
  • Meet the required language proficiency levels in English or French for each language ability (speaking, reading, writing, listening);
  • Have an offer of full-time employment for a total period of at least one year, OR
  • A certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial or territorial authority;
  • You must be admissible to Canada;
  • You must plan to live outside the province of Quebec.

The Skilled Trades currently eligible for the Federal Skilled Trades Program are organized under these major and minor groups of the NOC:

  • Major Group 72: industrial, electrical and construction trades;
  • Major Group 73: maintenance and equipment operation trades;
  • Major Group 82: supervisors and technical jobs in natural resources, agriculture and related production;
  • Major Group 92: processing, manufacturing and utilities supervisors and central control operators;
  • Minor Group 632: chefs and cooks, and;
  • Minor Group 633: butchers and bakers.

Provincial Nominee Program

Provincial Nominee Programs seek qualified immigrants to fill labour market shortages, or create employment and business opportunities in the province. The province will consider your application based on its immigration needs and your genuine intention to settle there. Greater consideration will be given to those individuals whose employment will fill a skills shortage.

International students who have graduated from a recognized post-secondary institution within certain provinces may qualify under an international graduate stream.

The following links provide province -specific information:

Quebec and Nunavut do not participate in the provincial nominee program.

BRITISH COLUMBIA: British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program

ALBERTA: Alberta Immigrant Nominee Program

SASKATCHEWAN: Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program

MANITOBA: Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program

ONTARIO: Ontario’s Pilot Provincial Nominee program

NEW BRUNSWICK: New Brunswick Provincial Nominee Program

NOVA SCOTIA: Nova Scotia Nominee Program

PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND: Prince Edward Island Provincial Nominee Program

NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR: Newfoundland and Labrador Provincial Nominee Program

NORTHWEST TERRITORIES: Northwest Territories Nominee Program

YUKON: Yukon Nominee Program

Family reunification is one of Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s highest priorities. This category is for Applicants who have a close relative who is a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident of Canada. Applicants under this category do not have to meet the point system or other selection criteria used in the other application categories. Instead, they are sponsored by a relative who will provide assistance in the Applicant’s ability to establish themselves in Canada.

Who Can Be Sponsored?

Only members of the family class may be sponsored. They are as follows:

  • spouses, common-law or conjugal partners aged 18 years or older;
  • parents and grandparents;
  • dependent children
    • must be under age 19, with no spouse or common-law partner, OR 19 years of age or older and has depended largely on the financial support of a parent since before age 19 because of a physical or mental condition;
  • children under 18 years of age whom you intend to adopt;
  • children under guardianship; or
  • brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces or grandchildren who are orphans; under the age of 18 and not married or in a common-law relationship.

We assist our clients through the eligibility process of their refugee claim.

If the claim is made at the port of entry, the basis of claim and narrative forms must be filed with the Refugee Protection Division (RPD) within 15 days. If the individual makes an inland claim, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA)  requires that an officer shall determine whether the claim is eligible to be referred to the Refugee Protection Division. This must happen within three working days.

A claim is ineligible to be referred to the Refugee Protection Division if:

  • Refugee protection has been conferred on the claimant under the IRPA;
  • A claim for refugee protection by the claimant has been rejected by the Board;
  • A prior claim by the claimant was determined to be ineligible to be referred to the Refugee Protection Division, or has been withdrawn or abandoned;
  • The claimant has been recognized as a Convention refugee by a country other than Canada and can be sent or returned to that country;
  • The claimant came directly or indirectly to Canada from a country designated by the regulations, other than a country of their nationality or their former habitual residence; or
  • The claimant has been determined to be inadmissible on grounds of security, violating human or international rights, serious criminality or organized criminality.

Canada takes its obligation to provide protection and safe haven to those who require it very seriously. Some of these obligations are codified under international laws protecting refugees to which Canada has agreed.

The following are three categories under which a refugee claim might fall:

Convention Claims

According to section 96 of the IRPA, a convention refugee is a person who, by reason of a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion:

  • is outside each of their countries of nationality and is unable or, by reason of that fear, unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of each of those countries; or
  • not having a country of nationality, is outside the country of their former habitual residence and is unable or, by reason of that fear, unwilling to return to that country.

Section 97 Claims

In some cases, individuals may be deemed by the Immigration and Refugee Board as not falling within the meaning of a Convention Refugee as stipulated in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.  In such cases, an assessment will be made to determine whether a claim for protection under section 97 of the IRPA can be made. The IRPA defines a person in need of protection as a person in Canada whose removal to their country of nationality or, if they do not have a country of nationality, their country of former habitual residence, would subject them personally:

  • to a danger, believed on substantial grounds to exist, of torture within the meaning of Article 1 of the Convention Against Torture; or,
  • to a risk to their life or to a risk of cruel and unusual treatment or punishment if,
    • the person is unable or, because of that risk, unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of that country;
    • the risk would be faced by the person in every part of that country and is not faced generally by other individuals in or from that country;
    • the risk is not inherent or incidental to lawful sanctions, unless imposed in disregard of accepted international standards; and,
    • the risk is not caused by the inability of that country to provide adequate health or medical care.

Safe Third Country Claimants

Canada has an agreement with the United States where people who want to make a refugee claim must do so in the first safe country they arrive in. This means that if you enter Canada at a land border from the United States, you cannot make a refugee claim in Canada. In some cases this rule does not apply (for example, if you have family in Canada).

If your claim is denied, there is help available. You can apply for judicial review to have the Federal Court of Canada determine if the right decision was made.

Judicial Review

Review by the Federal Court is a two-stage process. In the first stage, which is known as the “leave” stage, the Court reviews the documents related to your case. You must show the Court that an error was made in the decision, or the decision was not fair or reasonable.

If ‘leave’ is given, this means the Court has agreed to examine the decision in depth. At this second stage, called “application for judicial review,” we will attend an oral hearing before the Court and explain why the original decision was wrong. In the case of decisions made by the Immigrant and Refugee Board, a request for review by the Federal Court automatically puts a removal order on hold, and you can stay in Canada until the Court makes its decision.

At HALLSTONE LAW, we will assist you through the pursuit of any of the above claims or judicial processes.

Contact us today.


There are two immigration streams under this category:

Caring for Children

Under this category, you will require the following:

  • two years of full-time work experience in Canada as a home child care provider within the past four years;
  • a minimum language requirement, and
  • a Canadian post-secondary education credential of at least one year, or an equivalent foreign credential supported by an Educational Credential Assessment.

If you have not previously worked in Canada under the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP), and your employer’s Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application was received by Service Canada after November 30, 2014:

  • You must apply for a regular work permit

Caring for People with High Needs

You will require:

At least 24 months of full time work experience in Canada in the last 48 months in one of these National Occupations:

  • Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (NOC 3012);
  • Licensed practical nurses (NOC 3233);
  • Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates (NOC 3413);
  • Home support workers and related occupations (NOC 4412)

You will need to have:

  • Performed all the essential duties listed in the NOC job description and most of the main duties in the job description;
  • Worked as a registered nurse or a registered psychiatric nurse, or a licensed practical nurse;
  • Received a license to practice in Canada and that he or she is registered with the regulatory body of the province;
  • Completed the education, training, and other qualifications necessary to fit each NOC:
    • For education it is essential to prove either a one year post-secondary education credential in Canada, OR
    • A completed foreign education credential approved as equivalent to a one year Canadian post-secondary credential of at least one year;
  • Taken a language test and establish minimum language levels necessary for the job; and

You must not have:

  • Any admissibility issues and/or inadmissible family members.