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Corporate Immigration

CBSA proposes amendments to NEXUS and other trusted traveler programs

The Canada Border Services Agency recently announced that it was proposing changes to its Trusted Traveller Programs, which include CANPASS, Free and Secure Trade, and NEXUS. In furtherance of this proposal, CBSA intends to amend the Presentation of Persons (2003) Regulations, which were implemented under the Canadian Customs Act.

 

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Canada to lift visa requirements for Mexican citizens

On June 28, 2016, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau formally announced that the Temporary Resident Visa (“TRV”) requirement for citizens of Mexico travelling to Canada will be eliminated as of December 1, 2016. However, the existing TRV requirement will continue until November 30, 2016. Mexican citizens who wish to travel to Canada before December 1, 2016, will still need to obtain a TRV from a Canadian consular post.

 

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Top 4 mistakes US employers make when expanding into Canada

With the hot Toronto tech skills market and the favourable dollar exchange, US employers are increasingly looking north of the border to expand for new business and for new talent.  Here are four common mistakes US employers will want to avoid:

 

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Update on Express Entry

Since Express Entry began on January 1, 2015, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) has issued several rounds of Invitations to Apply (“ITAs”). As of the date of this article, CIC has issued a total of 35 rounds of ITAs.

 

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Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program announces temporary pause on high volume streams

On May 9, 2016, the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (“OINP”) announced that the Province of Ontario had received a sufficient number of OINP applications to meet its 2016 federal allocation. As a result, it has placed a temporary pause on the intake of applications under what it refers to as “select, high-volume” OINP streams.

 

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CIC establishes LMIA exemptions for television and film production workers and performing artists

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) has announced two new categories of work permits exempt from the Labour Market Impact Assessment requirement, pursuant to Section 205 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations. These work permits apply to: (1) foreign nationals whose work is essential to a television or film production and would create and maintain significant economic benefits and opportunities for Canadians and permanent residents; and (2) foreign nationals working in dance (i.e. ballet, contemporary), opera, orchestra, and live theatre, whose work contributes to competitive advantages and reciprocal benefits for all Canadians. CIC has also clarified its business visitor guidance to confirm that foreign nationals who are employed as film producers, essential personnel for commercial (i.e. advertising) shoots, and film and recording studio users may now seek admission under the business visitor category.

 

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Zika virus – To panic

There has been a lot of stories coming out in the news about the Zika virus. To be clear, as of right now the chances of contracting this virus in Canada is extremely low and there has only been 9 confirmed cases in Canada (and rising); all cases have involved travel to countries that are known to have mosquitoes that carry the Zika virus. At this time, stay calm, Canada is at minimal risk levels.

 

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Canada implements leniency period for Electronic Travel Authorization until Fall 2016

On April 1, 2015, Citizenship and Immigration Canada published regulations implementing its Electronic Travel Authorization (“eTA”) program. The regulations initially required eTAs to be mandatory as of March 15, 2016. Fortunately, the new Liberal Government has decided to delay the enforcement of the eTA requirement until Fall 2016 (no exact end date has been announced) by implementing a “leniency period.” During the leniency period, visa-exempt foreign nationals who do not have an eTA will still be permitted to enter Canada as long as they have appropriate travel documents, such as a valid passport. Nevertheless, visa-exempt foreign nationals are encouraged to obtain an eTA as soon as possible.

 

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Update on Express Entry

Since Express Entry began on January 1, 2015, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) has issued several rounds of Invitations to Apply (“ITAs”). As of the date of this article, CIC has issued a total of 26 rounds of ITAs. The last two rounds (rounds 25 and 26) have required minimum CRS scores (453 points and 457 points) that have approached the levels used in rounds 17 and 18 (450 points).

 

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Legislative changes in Ontario to protect foreign workers

As of November 20, 2015, changes to Ontario’s employment laws came into effect with the aim of better protecting precarious and foreign workers.

 

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Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program announces details of its Entrepreneur and Corporate Streams

When the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (“OINP”) announced the termination of its Investor Stream on October 29, 2015, it promised that it would create new Entrepreneur and Corporate Streams to replace it. On December 18, 2015, the OINP published complete eligibility criteria and application guidelines for these two new business streams.

 

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Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program announces temporary pause on OINP “base” stream applications

On November 16, 2015, the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (“OINP”), formerly known as the Ontario Provincial Nominee Program, announced that it has exhausted its base stream allocation for 2015. Between November 16th, 2015 and January 3, 2016, the program will not accept any new employer pre-screen applications or applications under the Master’s Stream or PhD Stream. Any applications received during this time period will be returned to the applicant. The OINP will begin accepting new applications under all these streams on January 4, 2016.

 

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Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program announces closure of its Investor Stream

On October 29, 2015, the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (“OINP”), formerly the Ontario Provincial Nominee Program, announced that the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade is redesigning its OINP business streams. As a result, it has terminated its existing Investor Stream. However, applications for its redesigned Corporate Stream and Entrepreneur Stream will be accepted in the Fall of 2015.

 

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Update on Express Entry

Since Express Entry began on January 1, 2015, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (“CIC”) has issued several rounds of Invitations to Apply (“ITAs”). As of the date of this article, CIC has issued a total of 20 rounds of ITAs. Although the lowest Comprehensive Ranking System (“CRS”) score eligible to receive an ITA has been 450 points (which occurred in rounds 17 and 18, the minimum CRS score has risen to over 480 in the last two rounds (rounds 19 and 20).

 

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TFW program administrative monetary penalties for employer non-compliance

Background As was previously mentioned, Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development, and Chris Alexander, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, announced changes to Canada’s Temporary Foreign Worker (“TFW”) program on June 20, 2014.  Among these changes was a proposal to impose fines of up to $100,000 on employers who violated the TFW program.  The […]

 

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