New rules concerning the applications filed under the Quebec “Skilled Workers” class.

New rules concerning the applications filed under the Quebec “Skilled Workers” class.

Since August 1, 2013, new rules have been adopted regarding procedures for the intake and processing of certain applications for a “Certificat de sélection du Québec” (CSQ) submitted by permanent workers, investors, businesspeople and self-employed workers. These new rules are in effect from August 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014.  What follows only concerns the skilled workers; for information regarding business applicants, click here.

Maximum number of applications

The MICC (Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles) will receive a maximum of 20,000 new applications for a Certificat de séléction du Québec under the Program for skilled workers, beyond which the applications received will be returned.

This maximum number of applications does not apply to you if:

WARNING: The 20K cap will be counted taking into account not only the applications filed on or after August the 1st 2013, but also those filed prior to this date, for which the MICC has not yet started the actual processing (i.e. they haven’t reached the stage of “preliminary examination”).  This retroactive application of immigration rules is a “first” when it comes to the Quebec procedures, and will affect perhaps hundreds if not thousands of applications filed over the last few months.

Order of priority for processing applications

Effective August 1, 2013, applications will be processed in the following order:

  • applications from candidates submitted under the Programme de l’expérience québécoise (Québec experience program);
  • applications from candidates who submit a valid employment offer;
  • applications from candidates who obtain points under the factor Area of training;
  • any other application submitted by permanent workers.

Language knowledge

If you submit an application under the Program for skilled workers, be informed that:

  • the weighting in the selection grid for knowledge of French has changed. The level required to obtain points for the factor Language knowledge has been increased;
  • the advanced intermediate level has become the minimum threshold from which points are attributed for knowledge of oral and written French;
  • two points can be attributed to the principal applicant for knowledge of written French.

If you submit an application under the Programme de l’expérience québécoise (Québec experience program), be informed that:

  • the level of knowledge required for oral French has been increased:
    • If you choose de demonstrate your level of knowledge of French by means of a standardized test, the level required is now advanced intermediate.
    • If you choose to demonstrate your level of knowledge of French by means of your schooling, you must have completed a minimum of three years of secondary or post-secondary studies in French.

Note that henceforth, for foreign students who have graduated in Québec, the application for a Certificat de sélection du Québec must be submitted in the 36 months after obtaining the diploma.

All applications will be processed according to the new rules in effect as of August 1, 2013, with the exception of those for which processing began prior to that date.

Areas of training

The 2013 List of areas of training is aimed at addressing the Québec job market outlook for immigrants.   It deserves to be noted that, for the first time, graduates from educational institutions outside of Quebec (very few of them indeed) will be able to collect 16 points for the “area of training” factor.

All applications will be processed according to the new rules in effect as of August 1, 2013, with the exception of those for which processing began prior to that date.

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