Permanent residence pathways for Hong Kong residents: Assessing the application against the public policy eligibility requirements
This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.
Applicants should be assessed against the eligibility criteria below, based on the information and documents provided in the application. Applicants must meet all of the following criteria to be approved.
Processing offices must follow procedural fairness guidelines if they are not satisfied that an applicant meets the criteria of the public policy. In such cases, the office must inform the applicant of their concerns, and the applicant must have the opportunity to respond and provide additional information in support of their application.
On this page
- Travel document
- Status in Canada
- Physical presence in Canada
- Intent to reside in a province or territory other than the province of Quebec
- Official language proficiency
- Eligibility requirements under Stream A and B
The principal applicant must hold a passport issued by one of the following:
- the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China, as defined by paragraph 190(2)(d) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR)
- the United Kingdom to a British National Overseas, as a person born, naturalized or registered in Hong Kong, as defined by paragraph R190(2)(e)
Status in Canada
The principal applicant must have valid temporary resident status in Canada.
Physical presence in Canada
The principal applicant must be physically present in Canada when they apply and when permanent residence is granted.
The principal applicant must provide proof of being physically present in Canada at the time of their application. This can include
- a copy of a lease or rental agreement
- a letter from a landlord or property owner attesting to residence and specifying dates
- utility bills or any other bills that contain the applicant’s residential address
Intent to reside in a province or territory other than the province of Quebec
To be eligible, an applicant must intend to reside as a permanent resident in a province other than Quebec.
The officer can check the applicant’s IMM 0008 question 5 (intent to reside) and Schedule A (address history).
Evidence that applicants intend to reside outside Quebec can include, but is not limited to,
- an employment reference
- job offers or jobs applied to or interviewed for
- family ties
- a lease agreement or property ownership
- a statutory declaration
Note: The fact that an applicant currently resides in Quebec at the time of application does not, conclusively, suggest that the applicant does not intend to reside in another province or territory as a permanent resident. However, the onus is on the applicant to provide sufficient proof to satisfy the officer that they intend to relocate outside Quebec.
Official language proficiency
The applicant must provide the results of a language test approved by IRCC that shows they meet the minimum language level of 5 for each of the 4 language skill areas (listening, speaking, reading and writing) for either the
- Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) in English
- Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens (NCLC) in French
Note: The test results must be less than 2 years old on the date of application.
Eligibility requirements under Stream A and Stream B
Applicants must apply under 1 of the 2 streams and meet all eligibility requirements in either stream.
Stream A: In-Canada graduates
This stream is targeted at applicants with recent post-secondary education in Canada.
Applicants must have graduated from a designated learning institution in Canada in the 3 years before they apply with one of the following:
- a post-secondary degree (for example, associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral)
- a post-secondary diploma (not graduate or post-graduate) for a program that is at least 2 years in length
- a graduate or post-graduate credential for a program that is at least 1 year in length and
- the program required them to have a post-secondary degree or diploma (from Canada or from abroad) as a prerequisite and
- they graduated from the post-secondary degree or diploma no more than 5 years before the start of the graduate or post-graduate program
The program of study can be completed in any field of study, with at least 50% of the program of study completed while physically present in Canada, either in class or online.
Stream B: Canadian work experience
This stream is targeted at applicants with recent work experience in Canada.
Canadian work experience
Applicants in Stream B must have accumulated 1 year (12 months) of full-time (at least 30 hours per week, or the equivalent in part-time, for a total of at least 1,560 hours) authorized Canadian work experience at any skill level within the 3 years before they apply.
Any work experience acquired during full-time studies or self-employment does not count under this public policy.
Canadian work experience does not need to be continuous to qualify, but the period of 12 months of required employment does not include
- any extended absence from Canada (including any time worked for an employer outside Canada)
- periods of unemployment
- prolonged sickness
- parental leave
A reasonable period of vacation time will be counted towards meeting the work experience requirement. For example, a 2-week period of paid vacation leave within a given 52-week period in which the applicant was engaged in qualifying work would qualify, whether that period of vacation was taken in Canada or outside Canada.
Principal applicants are requested to provide documentary evidence of their work experience in Canada. Documents that can be used as evidence include
- employer letters of reference for all periods of qualifying work experience claimed in the application
- their T4 tax information slip
- a copy of their notice of assessment issued by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)
- any other documents that may help substantiate the applicant’s work experience in Canada, such as a record of employment, work contract or pay stubs
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