New Immigrants’ Guide

Author: Parminder Singh LL.B/J.D. (Canada)

You have received a single entry permanent immigrant visa and you must enter Canada within 9 months or before the expiry date mentioned on the immigrant visa document.  This quick guide is a must read piece of information on important next steps.

Funds: You must take required funds with you in the form of draft or travel cheques or cash, otherwise, your Canada PR visa will be rejected for financial inadmissibility at the port of entry. You must declare any amount over $10,000 at the airport.

PR card: Upon landing in Canada, you will apply for PR cards which will be valid for 5 years with multiple entries. The PR card process takes 1 to 3 months. Do not come back to India without collecting PR card.

Canada PR status: You must stay in Canada for 2 years out of 5 years to maintain your PR status.

Canadian Citizenship: You are eligible to apply for Canadian citizenship after living in Canada 4 years out of the 6 year time frame. You can remain in Canada all life on PR card and may apply for citizenship whenever you meet 4 year residence time in the last 6 year time which starts on the day of applying.

A citizen can live anywhere in the world without losing status, but a PR must stay in Canada for 2 year out of 5 year to maintain status. However, if a PR is living with his citizen spouse outside of Canada, his days are counted as in Canada. Moreover, if a PR is working outside Canada for a Canadian company, his days are counted as in Canada, provided his overseas assignment is of temporary nature.

As a PR, you will be eligible for all benefits that a citizen is eligible for EXCEPT that you cannot vote or be elected in the parliament or work in certain security related jobs. Your children are eligible for free education up to Grade 12 and government loans thereafter and you all are eligible for free universal healthcare, child benefits during low income, UI (unemployment insurance) and social assistance allowance if unemployed and government pension after the age of 65 and much more.

SIN card: Contact “Service Canada office” to apply for SIN card (Social Insurance number), which will allow you to work.

Health insurance: Until you get your PR card or health card, it is strongly recommended that you should purchase private health insurance at a cost of 2-3 per day or less. Contact relevant govt. agency to find out more details on when you will be eligible for free health care card. In Ontario, such agency is OHIP, find out the relevant agency in BC or the province where you reside.

Banking: you should open an account right away which will assist you in providing residence address for healthcare application. I strongly recommend RBC Royal Bank.

Driving license: Take your Indian driving licenses with you which will allow you to get your Canadian driving license much faster. You should clear the written test right away after landing in Canada and then take an appointment for road test as soon as possible. Check if you can get an temporary international license from India, but I will NOT recommend driving until getting Canadian license and training.

Schooling: Start inquiring about children’s admission in the Canadian schools. Make efforts to upgrade your educational skills to meet regulatory requirements for licensing. Contact relevant agencies and bodies.

These are basic services that you must be aware of. However Canada has much to offer such as career counselling, language and child care benefits to mention a few.



Explaining raw facts for a successful visa application

Author: Parminder Singh, J.D (Canada)

How a rejected visitor visa application was accepted within 24-48 hours of its filing

Recently, a client filed two vasa applications, one on his own and another through us, but 1st application got rejected and the 2nd one got accepted. In this article we will explain the reasons for acceptance of the 2nd visa application.

The first application contained only raw facts. For instance it contained information with respect to the applicant’s sound financial condition, family ties in home country and unemployment in home country.

Explain the financial condition, not merely state the financial condition

In the 2nd application, these raw facts were given meaning. For instance, it was explained how the applicant’s sound financial condition stands better in comparison to Canadian average household income.

Explain the family ties to your advantage, not merely state the family ties

Whereas the first application only contained the fact that the applicant is leaving behind her husband to meet her student children in Canada, the 2nd application explained how the applicant’s family ties in her home country compel her to return from Canada after short stay there. For instance, the applicant explained that being a housewife, the applicant must return home to look after the household and her husband in order to let him work outside while the applicant takes care of the household duties.

Explain the unemployment to your advantage, not merely state the unemployment

While the 1st application was refused because of the applicant’s unemployment in her home country, the 2nd application was accepted for the same reason because the 2nd application explained how the applicant’s unemployment outside her home has allowed her husband to make a living for the whole family.

Explain the purpose of visit to your advantage, not merely state the purpose

In the first application, the purpose of visit was merely mentioned as visit to the children on a student visa whereas in the 2nd application it was explained that the visit is required to supervise the children and to give them unconditional care, both of which are required to produce a better citizen to the world. However this did not mean that she could ignore her duties as a housewife in her home country where her services were required in order to let her husband work outside. This was a compelling reason for her return to her home country after fulfilment of her equally essential duties in Canada. The dual role of the applicant as a mother and as a wife was explained to show the purpose of visit and purpose of return to home country.

Visa granted within 24 hours

Surprisingly, the visa for the 2nd application was granted within 24 hours of receipt of application by the visa office since the inferences from the raw information and facts about the applicant’s financial condition, family ties and purpose of visit were so persuasive that the officer granted the visa right away.




Important changes to Quebec Immigration on Aug 5, 2015

Author: Parminder Singh LL.B, J.D (Canada)

Quebec Immigration has  announced very important changes to selection of skilled workers on August 5, 2015. The changes will be applicable to all applications received after Aug 5, 2015 as well all applications received prior to this date for which no decision has been rendered yet.

Modifications to the selection grid for skilled workers: the “adaptability” factor is no longer considered in the evaluation

As per the above announcement, the qualifying points for a for a single applicant would be 49 and the qualifying points for a married applicant would be 57. Six  points for adaptability interview are removed from Quebec point selection criteria for all applicants who apply after August 05, 2015 or who have applied before this date but have not received a decision on their application yet.

In our view, even the applicants who have been given an interview date will not be awarded points for interview since interview call does not mean that a decision has been made. However, if a decision was rendered immediately after conducting an interview, the appoints will be awarded points for adaptability interview. Regardless of the changes in the rules, if you have received an interview call and the interview is not revoked yet, you should keep preparing for the interview as the government can still reject your case if they determine that you do not intend to reside in Quebec based on your lack of knowledge of Quebec and French language.

Previously, the qualifying points for a single applicant were 49, but with adaptability interview the qualifying points for a single applicant were 55. Similarly, the qualifying points for married applicant were 57 but with adaptability interview, the qualifying points for married applicant were 63.

Since the factor of adaptability is removed, the qualifying points are 49 and 57 for single and married applicants respectively.

This does not mean the government cannot conduct interview. This only means the government cannot award points for interview. If the government feels the application is fraudulent or needs some clarifications, they can call for an interview and reject the case if they are not satisfied with the applicant’s explanations or evidence in support of his application.

In the former rules, the government could merely reject an applicant’s application, if the government felt that the applicant would not be able to adapt to Quebec life because of lack of French language ability or  knowledge of Quebec culture. Not all candidates were called for interview but those who were called they required 55 and 63 points to qualify respectively for single and married candidates. Generally, if a single candidate scored 55 points without an interview, he would not be called for an adaptability interview. These rules are now deleted from the legislation.

If you score 49 points as a single candidate, you qualify provided you intend to stay in Quebec.

If you score 57 points as a married candidate, you qualify provided you intend to stay in Quebec.

In order to prove your intention to stay in Quebec, you should undertake several measures, such as learning about Quebec and its language, culture, rental and job market.

How to score 9 bands in IELTS

Author: Parminder Singh, BA Hons (Toronto), J.D (Windsor)

9 Tips for 9 bands in IELTS

With so much emphasize on language ability in Canada Immigration programs, IELTS schools are thriving. However, mushrooming of IELTS schools is not regulated and as such, there is no way to find out which IELTS school or its teachers are authentic and well qualified.

In order to assist people with their Canada immigration projects and plans, we provide free tips for IELTS training.

Writing: Organization

Each essay is made of introduction, thesis, paragraphs and conclusion.

  1. Introduction should be easy, interesting and catchy to attract the reader. Read newspaper editorials to see the catchy intros.
  2. Thesis should be positioned right after the intro and declare in a brief sentence your view point on the topic.
  3. Paragraphs should provide a series of arguments, evidence, examples, analogies, similarities, contrasts to prove your thesis statement. Each paragraph should deal with one topic or issue. Each paragraph starts with the topic sentence and finishes with the conclusion. The conclusion of each paragraph should lead to the next paragraph, which means all the paragraphs should be jointed together or welded in unity, not disjointed.
  4. Each paragraph is made up of sentences. Not only your sentences should have no grammatically errors, sentences should have variety of length and structure. Use variety of grammatical structures such as simple sentences, complex sentences, compound sentences, short sentences, long sentences, exclamatory sentences, Interrogatory sentences, active and passive sentences, metaphorical sentences and so on.
  5. Each sentence is made up of words. Not only your words should have no spelling errors, words should have a variety, which means words should be formal or casual as per the topic. E.g. A technical or a serious topic should use technical or formal vocabulary and a casual or humorous topic may use slang or casual vocabulary. E.g. When a dog dies the word “dead” may be used, but when a human dies the word “Passed Away” is used. Use variety of words such as nice, fabulous, gorgeous, beautiful, and exciting to describe a thing or person, instead of repeating “nice” every time.
  6. Variety is the key to killing monotony and boredom in a piece of writing. Your paragraphs, sentences and words should have variety. Use literary devices to improve form, meaning and emotion in your writing. E.g. use alliteration and rhyme to improve form; metaphor and imagery to elaborate meaning; and hyperbole and personification to intensify feelings in your writing. Check examples of useful literary devices here:
  7. Consider pros and cons of a topic. Accept opponent views or defend them.
  8. Summarize your topic. Make each paragraph, sentence and word count to the topic at hand, do not waste a single word, be focused and glued to the topic and
  9. Make a strong conclusion and landing (just like a gymnast). End with the strongest and remarkable single point or series of points quickly and with greatest speed to leave an everlasting impression on the reader.

After reading all of the above factors, you can now assess your own score. If you have been applying 5 or 6 factors from the above, your IELTS band would be 5 or 6. Apply all the 9 factors in your  writing and you will see an IELTS score of 9. You will also understand why your IELTS score was not improving despite your best efforts.

Sample News Editorial for practice

The following two editorial articles from Indian Express explain how to:

  •  Introduce a main topic in an interesting way.
  • Develop paragraphs on sub topics.
  • Conclude with a strong point.

However, in these articles, you will find some defects as well, such as, two or three topics are discussed in one paragraph. Re-write these paragraphs by removing these defects and use 9-point criteria for 9 bands above to enhance the following articles:

Road Safety:

Witness Protection:

Learning the use of literary devices in writing

Read Chaucer’s translated Knight’s tale for learning use of various literary devices used in writing such as metaphors, alliteration, hyperbole, similes, exclamations etc etc:

Henry Fielding’s Tom Jones is another one of the top 10 novels of all times to learn the use of literary devices:


Obviously, a paragraph is written in sentences, words and alphabets. Everyone knows this. What everyone does not know is as follows:

Understanding structure of paragraph

A paragraph contains an argument or a main point. The main point is supported by evidence, examples, comparisons, contrasts and quotes.

In other words, any argument has two parts: premise and conclusion. The premise is the evidence which supports the conclusion in an argument.

How to read

When reading a paragraph, analyse the paragraph to separate the main point from the supporting items.

If you know what the main point is and what is the supporting evidence, you can quickly answer the questions in a reading comprehension LSAT test.

Read analytically

If you read the paragraph with the goal of separating main point from supporting evidence, you can save a lot of time while answering the questions because you need not read the whole paragraph again or go back to paragraph for each question.

Locate parts

Note that sometimes the main point is at the end while sometimes it is in the beginning of a paragraph. It may be somewhere in the middle as well. Your job is to pin point the main point and supporting evidence in the paragraph.

Mark parts

Make sure you not only read the paragraph but you also memorize the main points and the supporting evidence or at least their locations in the paragraph by making them while reading the paragraph.


Speaking and listening skills only come through practice. Listen to what you have written and speak out what you have written and you are good to go.

You may listen to English news and speak about those news with your friends or family and you have practiced the skills of speaking and listening.

Listening to authentic BBC or CNN English news, sports, entertainment or national geographic channels will accustom you to understand British and American accent and boost your IELTS listening score.

Make it a habit of speaking and listening in English.

Citizenship of Canadian born children at risk of revocation

Author: Parminder Singh, LL.B, J.D (Windsor, Canada)

Canadian citizens at risk of being banished from Canada under new law:

Bill C-24

Bill C-24 was introduced in 2014 and it has been passed as law effective June 2015. This law has serious consequences for Canadian citizens, whether they are born in Canada or outside. Canadian citizens with dual nationality or even with right to have dual nationality are at risk of losing their citizenship if they are convicted of treason or terrorism in Canada or outside.


If a Canadian citizen has dual citizenship or even has right to citizenship of another country, the government of Canada can strip him of Canadian citizenship if he is convicted of treason or terrorism in Canada or outside. The government could use this law to banish someone who is convicted of a crime outside Canada even on false grounds.


The Canadian citizen will have no automatic right to appeal; rather he will have to seek leave of the federal court to appeal. Under current laws, the citizenship cannot be revoked without right to appeal. This law will deprive Canadian citizens’ right to fair trial and due process under the Charter.


Banishment of some family members from Canada will result in disintegration of families and separation of parents from their children. Even after serving their sentence in Canada for treason or terrorism, their banishment will put Canadian citizens at risk of life at the hands of barbarian governments. As such it will deprive them of right to life, liberty and security granted under s 7 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (The Charter).


Moreover, if the Canadian citizen is born outside Canada, he can lose the Canadian citizenship, if an officer finds out that he had no intension to live in Canada when he applied for Canadian citizenship. However, Canadian citizens born in Canada are immune from this provision of law. This will violate Canadian citizen’s right to liberty under s. 7 of the Charter because anytime a citizen moves outside Canada for business, study or otherwise to join his spouse after marrying outside Canada, the officer can strip him of citizenship on the allegations of misrepresenting intention to live in Canada in his citizenship application.


The whole scheme will result in creating two classes of citizenship. One of this class would be 2nd class citizens who could lose their citizenship and the other class would be 1st class citizens who would not lose citizenship even if they are convicted of crimes in Canada or outside Canada. This will result in further violation of right to equality under the Charter.


Except UK, no western country has allowed such a legislation to operate on their soil. USA abolished this practice 50 years ago and it guarantees permanent citizenship.


Canadian criminal justice system serves the purpose of deterrence, denunciation, retribution and rehabilitation; therefore, there is no need to protect Canada from terrorism with such legislation. Taking away citizenship in addition to punishment in prison for treason or terrorism will amount to violation of doctrine of double jeopardy enshrined in the Charter.


Bill C-24 proposes to give the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration the authority to strip dual nationals of Canadian citizenship in certain circumstances.  Stripping a person of citizenship serves no valid or justifiable purpose, and is inconsistent with basic notions of justice as outlined in Canadian and American law.

The words of United States Chief Justice Earl Warren remain as true today as they were in 1958:

“Citizenship is not a license that expires upon misbehavior . . . And the deprivation of citizenship is not a weapon that the government may use to express its displeasure at a citizen’s conduct, however reprehensible that conduct may be.”

The Canadian courts have recognized that taking away citizenship is a violation of a person’s constitutional rights. As explained by Justice Martineau in his recent judgment in the Taylor case,

“A person’s right to security (such as obtaining state protection) and liberty of movement is inextricably linked with his national, or as the case may be, his citizenship status.  Nationality and citizenship are so intimately attached to an individual that I am ready to accept that any deprivation or loss of nationality or citizenship by an act of the state – whether or not it renders someone ‘stateless’ – engages an individual’s rights to ‘liberty’ and ‘security of the person.”

(Taylor v Canada (Minister of Citizenship and Immigration), 2006 FC 1053 at para 232.).


The Canadian civil liberties and Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers have decided to launch a constitutional challenge to this law. These organizations have also mobilized political campaigns and protests against this law: CONTACT:

Predicting chances of Canada PR under express entry system

Author: Parminder Singh LL.B, J.D (Canada)

How to improve your ranking in express entry system  

Express entry system says that all skilled occupations are eligible under express entry system. However, all skilled applicants are not eligible to apply for Canada PR since candidate selection is rank-based and not first-come-first based as was done under pre Jan 2015 system. This article will explain how to improve your ranking.

Check the following tool to know your possible score and to know where you need improvement:

Eligible score rank for Canadian PR from Jan to July 2015

  • Jan 31:      866 (779 invitations to apply for Canadian PR sent)
  • Feb  7:       818
  • Feb 20:      808
  • Feb 27:      735
  • Mar 20:      481
  • Mar 27:      453
  • Apr 10:      469
  • Apr 17:      453
  • May 23:     755
  • June 12:    482
  • June 26:    469 (1575 invitations to apply for Canadian PR sent)
  • July 10:      463

How to improve your score

There are things that you can do to improve your score and increase your chances of being invited to apply for Canadian PR. For example, you may want to:

  • secure a valid job offer using:
    • Job Bank, or
    • by promoting yourself to employers in Canada using private sector job boards or personal contacts,
  • consider Provincial Nomination
  • improve your IELTS score
  • improve your education, or
  • gain work experience.

Skilled  workers under Federal skilled worker class FSW, Federal skilled trade class FST, Canadian experience class CEC and Provincial nominees program PNP are eligible for Canadian PR under Express entry system. Job offer is mandatory under FST class but it is not mandatory under other classes.

If you are eligible to be in the express entry system, your online express entry profile is valid for one year. Here follows the historical express entry ranking scores that were eligible for Canadian PR in the last 6 months. Based on these figures, you will know whether you are likely to be a candidate for Canadian PR. If you are not likely to be a candidate for Canadian PR,  you may try to improve your score with the advice given at the end.

Even if your score is low at this time, you should create express entry online profile because if your profile is online, there is a chance that it may be picked up by an employer which will improve your score by 600 point up. But if it not visible to the potential employers, it cannot be picked up.

The score may go down or it may come up in the next 6 months, its unpredictable, but one thing is clear from the historical ranking scores eligible for Canadian PR: candidates without job offer are ALSO being selected for Canadian PR:

Understanding Express entry point system in Brief:

Total points: 1200

Age, education, experience, IELTS: 600 points

Job offer or nomination from a Province: 600 points

Distribution of 1200 points

  • 600 points for age education experience and English
  • 600 points for Canadian job offer or provincial nomination

Points break down

  • Age: 100 or 110 (100 if you are married and 110 if you are single)
  • Education: 140 or  150
  • Canadian Experience: 70 or 80
  • IELTS: 130 or 136
  • French: 20 or 24
  • Spouse (education, IELTS, experience): 40
  • Combination of IELTS and work experience in Canada and abroad: 50
  • Combination of IELTS and work experience abroad: 50
  • Approved Job offer from Canada or Provincial Nomination: 600

Overcoming Criminal inadmissibility

Author: Parminder Singh LL.B, Juris Doctor (Canada)

Can I enter Canada if I am criminally inadmissible?

There are ways of overcoming criminal inadmissibility.

You may be offered a temporary resident permit if:

  • your purpose of travel to Canada is justified; and
  • you do not pose a risk

Family emergencies or business conferences are justified but tourism is normally not justified.

If you are inadmissible for temporary or permanent residence, you may be admissible again if you:

What is Deemed rehabilitated and Eligibility to file a rehabilitation application?

This section gives a summary of the type of offences and length of rehabilitation periods.

Less than 10 year imprisonment:

If you were convicted of an offence outside Canada that, if committed in Canada, would be an indictable offence punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of less than ten years:

  • You are deemed rehabilitated: at least ten years after completion of the sentence imposed.
  • You are eligible to file a rehabilitation application: five years after completion of the sentence imposed.

Maximum 10 or more imprisonment:

If you were convicted of an offence or you committed an offence outside Canada that, if committed in Canada, would be punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of ten years or more:

  • You are deemed rehabilitated: you are not deemed rehabilitated and you must file a rehabilitation application
  • You are eligible to file a rehabilitation application: five years after completion of the sentence (if you were convicted) or five years after commission of the offence (if you were charged but not sentenced).

2 or more Summary convictions:

If you were convicted for two or more offences outside Canada that, if committed in Canada, would constitute summary conviction offences:

  • You are deemed rehabilitated: five years after the sentences imposed were      served or to be served.
  • You are eligible to apply for rehabilitation: you need not file a rehabilitation      application after 5 years because you are deemed rehabilitated after 5 years.

What can I do if I want to come to Canada but I am not eligible for rehabilitation?

You may be able to receive a temporary resident permit, if you can show that:

  • your  purpose of travel to Canada is justified; and
  • you do not pose a risk.

This permit would allow you to enter or stay temporarily in Canada.


Police & Medical Clearance for Canadian Visa: Procedure and resources

 Author: Parminder Singh, LL.B, Juris Doctor (Canada)
Police & Medical Clearance for Canada Visas
  • You need a police and medical clearance if you intend to enter Canada for more than 6 months.
  • You need a police clearance certificate from all countries where you have lived 6 months or more.
  • You do not need a Police clearance if you are less than 18 years of age
  • Your police clearance certificate must have been issued no more than three months before you submit your application.
  • Your medical is valid for 12 months.
1) Police clearance certificate
a) Process for residents of the Punjab: 
Only the Senior Superintendent of Police
b) For districts other than the Punjab:
Applicants should contact the local Senior Superintendent of Police/  Superintendent of Police/ Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of Police, the Additional Commissioner of Police, or the Station House Officer.
(Police clearance certificates issued by the Regional Passport Office are also acceptable but the process is longer)

d) For all other countries Check here:

2) Medical clearance certificate
This certificate is valid for 12 months
Go to any of the following doctors and request them for an UPFRONT MEDICAL. Take your offer of admission or your immigration document or letter with you. Call them to make an appointment and to ask them what documents you should bring to the doctor.
 A list of recognized doctors is provided hereunder:
For Greece, see the list of doctors here:

For all other countries:

Funds requirements for Immigration

Parminder Singh, J.D. Juris Doctor (Windsor, Canada)

Year 2015 Proof of funds for Federal Skilled Workers Immigration (Express Entry)

Financial inadmissibility can be a ground for refusal of Canadian PR visa. Be careful when you apply to immigrate to Canada on permanent basis and make sure you fulfil the current years funds requirement.

Exception: If you are authorized to work in Canada and have a valid job offer from a Canadian employer, you need not show these funds. This means if you are working in Canada on a work permit or you have a  work permit AND a valid job offer (which is approved by LMIA, you do not need to show funds)

You cannot borrow this money from another person. You will take these funds with you to Canada in the form of:

  1. Cash
  2. documents that show property or capital payable to you (such as stocks, bonds, debentures, treasury bills, etc.) or
  3. documents that guarantee payment of a set amount of money, which are payable to you (such as bankers’ drafts, cheques, travellers’ cheques or money orders).

Federal Immigration funds requirements according to size of family

Number of   Family Members Funds Required   (in Canadian dollars)
1 $11,931
2 $14,853
3 $18,260
4 $22,170
5 $25,145
6 $28,359
7 or more $31,574

Quebec immigration funds requirement according to size of family

The Province of Quebec governs its own immigration rules. As such, the following settlement funds are only for those who have been accepted by Quebec immigration

1 adult:                     $2924

1 adult 1 child:            $3930

1 adult 2 children:       $4436

1 adult 3 children:       $4942

2 adults:                      $4288

2 adults 1 child:          $4804

2 adult 2 children:       $5185

2 adult 3 children:       $5566

Child means a child under 18 years of age.


Express entry frequently asked questions

Author: Parminder Singh LL.B, J.D (Canada)

Express entry FAQs

Where can I get brief information on express entry point system?

Click here for a brief article on complicated express entry point criteria.

Which occupations are eligible for Express Entry?

Express Entry will not include an eligible occupation list or occupation caps at the time of launch.

To be eligible an applicant must have work experience in National Occupational Code (NOC) 0, A or B occupation. Job offers must meet the LMIA requirements.

Language requirements (for NOC 0 and A occupations: IELTS 6 bands in each component; for NOC B occupations: IELTS 5 bands).

Do I need a job offer to get into the Express Entry pool?

A job offer supported by a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a significant asset, but not a requirement.

Is Quebec participating in this program?

No. they have their own skilled worker program