Guide 0139 – Regional Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (Regional EMPP) 

Table of contents


This application kit describes the process for skilled refugees and other displaced people who are seeking to apply for permanent residence and are eligible for facilitation measures established under the Regional Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (Regional EMPP).

It includes:

The instruction guide:

Read the instruction guide completely and then fill out each of the applicable forms.

The forms are designed with questions that will help the processing of your application.

Use this guide if you are a skilled refugee or a displaced person currently residing abroad and are applying for permanent residence to Canada under one of the eligible economic programs.

This is not a legal document. The explanations and definitions are not legal definitions. In case of a discrepancy between the language in this document and the relevant legislation or regulations, the legal text in the legislation and regulations prevails.

For legal information, consult the following documents:

Symbols used in this guide

This guide uses these symbols to draw your attention to important information:

Required step

What you must do to have your application processed.

Important information

Important information that you need to know to avoid delays or other problems.

Get more information

Where to get more information.

How to apply under the Regional EMPP

Step 1: Make sure you are eligible to come to Canada under an eligible economic program and apply

The Regional EMPP offers a series of facilitation measures to help remove obstacles faced by some skilled refugees and displaced people, to apply to economic programs in Canada.

To apply for permanent residence, you must first assess whether you meet the requirements under one of the eligible economic programs.

The eligible economic programs include:

Once you have determined that you qualify under one of these programs, you must read instructions in Step 2 to ensure you are eligible for Regional EMPP facilitation measures before completing the required PNP, AIP or RNIP application and gather the required documents.

Waiving certain requirements under the Regional EMPP

Required step

In order to help skilled refugees and other displaced people qualify for permanent residence, Regional EMPP applicants applying under the Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP), and the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) do not need to prove that they have obtained the required work experience within a specific timeframe. Instead, applicants are only required to demonstrate that they have accumulated the required length of work experience prior to submitting their applications. The work experience requirement for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) cannot be waived as it is set by each province. The accumulation of experience does not have to be from a single employer or job, but where there is overlap of time worked only one job can be counted at a time.

For example, applicants applying through the AIP would normally have to provide proof of having 12 months of paid, full time work experience in an approved job obtained within the last 3 years prior to the signature and submission of their permanent residence application. Instead, applicants will only have to demonstrate that they have 1 year of work experience in total (equivalent to 1,560 hours), which can be accumulated through a combination of full or part-time experience acquired over any number of years. Gaps in employment are permitted.

Proof of settlement funds are used to ensure that economic applicants can self-sustain themselves in their first year in Canada. Given that this can be a barrier for refugees and other displaced people, applicants can use loans to meet this requirement. The Department encourages applicants to use loans from an EMPP partner NGO, such as Windmill Microlending.

Also, the requirement for an educational credential assessment (ECA) is waived for Regional EMPP applicants applying under RNIP and AIP.

Instead of an ECA, the principal applicant must prove that they have acquired training, education, or experience that aligns with the TEER category of the job offer.

The following examples may be used to assess EMPP applicants educational requirements:

Supplemented by originals or copies of at least one of the following documents issued by an institution:

Step 2: Make sure you are eligible for facilitations under the Regional Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot

To be eligible for the Regional EMPP, you, the Principal Applicant (PA), must meet the following requirements:

  1. Have submitted an application for permanent residence under the PNP, AIP or RNIP and be nominated, endorsed or recommended by a province, territory or community.

Regional EMPP candidates are only eligible to apply to the following programs:

  1. Submit a copy of one of the following documents:
    • a positive Refugee Status Determination (RSD) from either the UNHCR, or a refugee-hosting state; or
    • a proof of being registered or recorded as a person of concern by the UNHCR, if a positive RSD has not been obtained yet or is not available in the state where the foreign national is residing at the time of their application; or
    • a refugee certificate with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA); or
    • a proof of being registered or recorded as a person of concern by the UNRWA, if a refugee certificate has not been obtained yet; or
    • a Temporary Protection Status (TPS) document proof of having Temporary Protected Status issued by the hosting state where you are residing at the time of your application; and a Durable Solution Information (IMM 0195) form; or
    • if you do not have one of the documents listed above, you will need to work with a trusted partner and will need to include their referral letter (IMM 0183) with your application. The letter must be valid at the time of the application, issued by an organization with a Trusted Partner Arrangement with IRCC.
  2. Reside outside of Canada at the time the application for permanent residence is submitted referred to in (1).
  3. You must successfully pass all medical, security, financial and criminality checks.

    You and your family members, included in your application, must do a medical exam by a Panel Physician approved by IRCC. IRCC will also perform background and security checks for all applicants who wish to immigrate to Canada. This includes checks into any past criminal behaviour, violations, infractions, etc. We will not contact organizations or individuals if it puts you or your family in danger.

  4. Intend to reside in a province or territory other than Quebec.

If you intend to live in Quebec

Do not use this application if you intend to live in Quebec; Quebec immigration programs are not eligible under the EMPP. Instead you should contact the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Integration (MIFI) for more information on Quebec immigration programs.

Common questions about eligible family members

Who is the principal applicant (PA)?

If there is only one person applying for permanent residence, that person is by default the principal applicant. When a family applies for permanent residence together, one family member must be the principal applicant. Under the Regional EMPP, the principal applicant is the person that meets the eligibility of the Regional EMPP as a refugee or displaced person and is the skilled worker that meets the requirements of the economic program.

Who can be included as family members?

Under the Canadian immigration system, a family includes:

See subsection 1(3) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) for the legal definition of the word “family member”.

All family members must be declared in the application, even if they are not accompanying the PA to Canada.

What is the difference between an accompanying family member and a non-accompanying member?

Accompanying family member: A family member who plans to come to Canada at the same time or after the PA.

Non-accompanying family member: A family member who has been separated from the family and is not able to, or chose not to, accompany the PA to Canada. Non-accompanying family members will not be granted permanent resident status as part of the application.

Why do I need to list non-accompanying family members?

You must list all family members in your application for permanent residence, whether they are accompanying you to Canada or not. You must also provide details on family members whose location is unknown (including those missing or presumed dead). If these family members are not listed on your application, you will not be able to sponsor them at a later date.

Family member definitions

Your family members include your spouse or common-law partner, your dependent children and any children that are their dependent children.


Refers to either of the two persons (any gender) in a marriage legally recognized in the country in which it took place, as well as in Canada.

Important information

Proxy, telephone, fax, internet and similar forms of marriage where one or both parties were not physically present are not considered as valid spousal relationships under the Regulations nor are polygamous marriages. For more information, consult our policy on the legality of a marriage.

Common-law partner

Refers to a person who is living in a conjugal relationship with another person (any gender), and has done so continuously for a period of at least one year. A conjugal relationship exists when there is a significant degree of commitment between two people.

This can be shown with evidence that the couple share the same home, support each other financially and emotionally, have children together, or present themselves in public as a couple.

Common-law partners who have been in a conjugal relationship for at least one year, but are unable to live together or appear in public together because of legal restrictions in their home country or who have been separated for reasons beyond their control (for example, civil war or armed conflict) may still qualify and should be included on the application.

Dependent children

We assess your child’s eligibility as a dependant based on how old they were at a specific point in time, called the "lock-in date". This is usually the date we received your application. To see if your child qualifies as a dependant, we consider the age of your child on the lock-in date, even though your child’s age may change during processing.

Your child or the child of your spouse or common-law partner can be considered a dependent child if that child meets the requirements below on the lock-in date:

  • They’re under 22 years old, and
  • They don’t have a spouse or common-law partner

Children 22 years old or older qualify as dependants if they meet both of these requirements:

  • They have depended on their parents for financial support since before the age of 22, and
  • They are unable to financially support themselves because of a mental or physical condition

With the exception of age, dependants must continue to meet these requirements until we finish processing your application.

Not sure if your child is a dependant? Check if your child qualifies by answering a few questions.

If your child’s age was locked in on or before October 23, 2017, a previous definition of dependent children may apply.

Dependent child of a dependent child

Refers to children of dependent children of the applicant and those of the spouse or common-law partner, if applicable.

What does other family members mean?

You cannot include other relatives in your application other than those who meet the definition of family member.

If you want to come to Canada with other family members (over age children, siblings, parents, cousins, etc.), these persons require a separate application.

Step 3: Use the document checklists and gather your documents

Read and follow the instructions below to complete the forms and use the document checklists to make sure that you have all the required forms and documents.

Please make sure that you are providing all documents and forms identified in the document checklist for the economic program and the document checklist for the Regional EMPP.

1. Economic program checklist

First, complete the application kit for the economic program (AIP, RNIP or PNP) you will be applying under.

You can obtain the application for the different economic programs here:

Because you are applying under the Regional EMPP, some document requirements under these programs will not apply to you given your situation of displacement. You do not need to submit:

Instead add the following note to that section of the document checklist: “Not required for the Regional EMPP”

With the exception of the items listed above, you must submit all the forms and documents listed in the document checklist of your chosen pathway’s application kit.

2. Regional EMPP checklist

Next, gather all the documents and forms listed on the Regional EMPP Document Checklist [IMM 0137] (PDF, 375 KB).

Translation of documents

You must include the following along with any document that is not in English or French:

Translations may be done by:

  • a person who is fluent in both languages (English or French, and the unofficial language); or
  • a Canadian certified translator (a member in good standing of a provincial or territorial organization of translators and interpreters in Canada).

If the translation isn’t done by a Canadian certified translator, the person who completed the translation must provide an affidavit swearing to their language proficiency and the accuracy of the translation.

The affidavit must be sworn in the presence of:

In Canada:

Authority to certify varies by province and territory. Consult your local provincial or territorial authorities.

Outside of Canada:

  • a notary public

Authority to administer oaths varies by country. Consult your local authorities.

small exclamation warning signImportant information: Translations must not be done by the applicants themselves nor by members of the applicant’s family. This includes a parent, guardian, sibling, spouse, common-law partner, conjugal partner, grandparent, child, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew and first cousin.

Note: An affidavit is a document on which the translator has sworn, in the presence of a person authorized to administer oaths in the country where the translator is living, that the contents of their translation are a true translation and representation of the contents of the original document. Translators who are certified in Canada don’t need to supply an affidavit.

Step 4: Fill in your forms

It is a serious offence to give false or misleading information.

When filling out all the forms, be complete and accurate.

If you do not provide all the requested information and the documents from the checklists, your application will be returned to you.

Pre-Arrival Facilitations (IMM 0184)

Who must fill out this form?

This form must be completed by:

Please follow the instructions below to ensure the form is properly completed.

You must answer all questions on this form unless otherwise indicated or your application may be returned to you.

Principal Applicant Information

Pre-Arrival Facilitations

Access to IOM support

Immigration Loans Program (ILP):

The objective of the transportation loan is to provide financial assistance to eligible applicants to cover the costs of transportation for themselves and their beneficiaries from overseas to their place of final destination in Canada. This includes approved service fees from the International Organization for Migration (IOM) as well as other related expenses. Any applicants who chose to book their own travel will not be issued a transportation loan.

Before issuing a loan, an officer will assess your situation according to your need, ability to repay and if applicable settlement funds already available.

Privacy Notice and Signature

Read the privacy notice, sign and date. If you do not sign, the application will be returned to you.

Use of a Representative (IMM 5476) - required when using a representative

A representative is someone who provides advice, consultation, or guidance to you at any stage of the application process. If you appoint them as your representative by filling out this form, it means that you give your representative permission to do business on your behalf with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). A representative may be paid or not paid and must be declared. Learn how to appoint a representative.

Step 5: Submit the Application

Submitting your application to IRCC

Submit your application online via the application portal. IRCC launched an online permanent residence application portal enabling applicants who apply for select economic permanent resident programs to submit their applications online. If you cannot submit your application via the portal, you may submit your application via email.

Online Portal

Sign in or create a Permanent residence online application portal account using this link.

Before you submit your application, make sure you:
  • answer all questions
  • electronically sign your application (type your full name exactly as shown on your passport)
  • upload all the supporting documents
If your application is incomplete, we’ll reject it. You’ll have to fix any errors and then re-submit it.

By e-mail

If you are unable to submit your application via the application portal, you are able to apply via e-mail. Applications must be sent from the email of principal applicant or immigration representative (if applicable). This means that any emails or documents sent from an email not listed on the undertaking (a third party) may be returned.

Emailing your application


Prepare the email by following these steps:

  1. Check scanner settings:
    • the principal applicant or the representative should use a high resolution scanner of at least 400 DPI
    • scanned documents can be in color or black and white
    • all forms and supporting documents must be saved and submitted in PDF format
    • applicants’ photos can exceptionally be saved in JPEG format
    • ensure the photos meet IRCC’s photo specifications
  2. Prepare your email to the dedicated email address
    • you need to submit at least 6 separate email attachments and each attachment cannot be bigger than 5MB
    • IRCC does not accept compressed files (such as ZIP or RAR) as they cannot be opened
  3. Use these naming conventions for your attachments:

    Note: in the naming conventions below, “PA” stands for “Principal Applicant”.

    • Document Checklist for the Regional Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot (IMM 0137)
      Name this file: "PA Family Name, First Name – IMM 0137 - Document Checklist Regional EMPP"
    • Refugee Status Determination (RSD) Document or proof of being a registered or recorded person of concern by the UNHCR or refugee certificate issued from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) or proof of being a registered or recorded person of concern by the UNRWA or Temporary Protected Status (TPS) document
      Name this file: "PA FAMILY NAME, First Name – Protection Status"
    • Trusted Partner Referral Letter (IMM 0183) - only for applicants supported by a Trusted Partner
      Name this file: "PA Family Name, First Name – IMM 0183 – Trusted Partner Referral Letter"
    • Pre-Arrival Facilitations Form (IMM 0184)
      Name this file: "PA Family Name, First Name – IMM 0184 - Pre-Arrival Facilitations"
    • Durable Solution Information (IMM 0195), only for applicants with temporary protection status
      Name this file: "PA Family Name, First Name – Durable Solution"
  4. Email the application to with the subject line as: "Regional EMPP application for PA Family Name, First name".

    The email size cannot be bigger than 10MB. If it is, send the attachment in two or more emails and number your email subjects like this:

    • Part 1 of 2 - Regional EMPP application for PA Family Name, First name
    • Part 2 of 2 - Regional EMPP application for PA Family Name, First name

    If your email is larger than 10MB, it will bounce back and you may not receive an email auto-reply

    After you send your email to IRCC, ensure your application was received:

    • you should receive an auto-reply from IRCC for each email sent; save this or these auto-reply/replies
    • if you do not receive an auto-reply within 48 hours, write to and ask whether your application was received
    • do not re-send your application unless IRCC asks you to resend it

Incomplete applications will be returned to you without being processed.

What Happens Next?

Acknowledgment of Receipt (AOR): If your application is complete, it will be placed into processing. You will be sent a letter or e-mail that:

Once you receive your Acknowledgement of Receipt, you can create an online account and link your application to it. You’ll be able to get email updates and a more detailed case status by having an account. Find out how to do this.

Emailed applications will receive an auto-reply upon submission.

When you send your application via email, an immediate auto-reply is sent to the email address from which the application was submitted. This email confirms that the EMPP application package has been received. It does not confirm that your application is complete nor does it include the name of the PA.

How we review your application

Phase 1 – Completeness check

Applications forms review

After receiving your application, IRCC reviews the application forms to ensure that all required forms for review were signed and submitted. At this stage, there is no verification as to whether applicants submitted all supporting documents necessary to assess the application.

If the application is not missing forms:

If the application is missing forms or if they are not signed:

Phase 2: Eligibility assessment for Regional EMPP

If the application is complete, IRCC will begin processing your application and determine if you meet the Regional Regional EMPP’s requirements in order to be able to access EMPP facilitations.

Your application may be forwarded to the IRCC office overseas responsible for your country of residence. At this stage, a Migration Officer may determine that enough information is available to make a decision or, they may ask for you and all accompanying family members to come for an interview. If you are selected for an interview, we will contact you with the date, time and location and will tell you which documents to bring. You and your accompanying family members must provide biometrics (fingerprint and a live photograph) at the interview.

If an officer finds that you meet the Regional EMPP requirements, they will proceed with further assessments.

Phase 3: Permanent residence eligibility assessment

You are found to be eligible for permanent residence when it is determined that you meet the requirements of the permanent residence immigration pathway you are applying under.

Applications are assessed on a case by case basis. Once your application is ready to be assessed, a Migration Officer will review your application to determine if you are eligible.

Phase 4: Admissibility Assessment

You are admissible to immigrate to Canada when you pass:

Once you are found eligible, you, your spouse, and each of your dependent children must complete an immigration medical exam by a physician from the IRCC list of Panel Physicians. Only Panel Physicians approved by IRCC can do this exam. The Panel Physician will tell you which tests are required. We will provide you with the instructions when the time comes. You must not complete a medical exam until we tell you to.

You should not pay for your medical exam. The cost of the medical exam is paid for by the Government of Canada. Present the IFHP Certificate of Eligibility to the Panel Physician who is registered with the IFHP during your appointment for the medical examination. You can search panel physicians who accept IFHP Certificate of Eligibility online at If the Panel Physician asks for you to pay money, please report this to the IRCC office overseas. Reporting such an incident will not affect processing of your application and will help ensure the integrity of the resettlement program.

Before we issue a visa, we do background and security checks for all applicants who wish to immigrate to Canada. This includes checks into any past criminal behaviour, violations, infractions, etc. We will not contact organizations or individuals if it puts you or your family in danger. All applicants are required to disclose any criminal past, including charges, on their forms. If you do not disclose this information, regardless of how serious the charge, infraction or conviction is, your application may be refused.

Phase 5: Final stage

Once you have satisfied the Migration Officer that you are eligible and are not inadmissible, your application can be finalized.

If you have indicated that you would like to have IOM arrange for your transportation, then IRCC will advise IOM to coordinate directly with you. You will be contacted directly by IOM.

If you do not have a valid passport for travel, IRCC will issue a travel document to facilitate your travel to Canada. Please note that some countries require that exit permits be obtained prior to departure in order to leave the country. In those instances, an IRCC office overseas will provide you with more information at this stage. Please note the costs, processing times and procedures for exit permits vary greatly. It is your responsibility to understand the process to obtain the exit permit.

Things that delay processing

The following may delay processing:

Phase 6: Arrival in Canada

If you are approved to become a permanent resident in Canada, help is available to make your adjustment to life in Canada easier as a newcomer. It should be noted that this help is limited to the help generally provided to all economic class permanent residents.

Before you arrive, we will provide you with information to give you access to The Canadian Orientation Abroad (COA) program. This is a general orientation to life in Canada that will help you prepare for your move, and connect you to free settlement services after you arrive in Canada – such as language training.

Other Important Information

1. Fees and documents


The only eligible fee for a permanent resident application submitted under the EMPP is the Right of Permanent Residence fee. You are exempted from paying the Permanent Residence application fee and the biometrics fee.

Travel documents

You must submit a copy of your and your family’s valid passports with your application.

You can use your valid passport to travel to Canada. If you do not have one or to facilitate your travel to Canada, IRCC will provide you with a travel document.

Permanent Residence card

Once approved as a permanent resident, you do not need to apply for a permanent residence card as it is processed automatically when you provide a photo and residential address in Canada.

2. Updating your contact information

3. Checking application status

Once your application has been received and reviewed by IRCC, you can check its status on-line.

4. Protecting your information

Your personal information is:

For more information about the protection of your data, visit the Help Centre.

5. For additional information on:

6. Need help?

If you need help, you can find answers to your questions by visiting the Help Centre.

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