Learning Moments - Work Experience under Different Occupations and CEC
This article by Andrew Carvajal is part of the Immigration Education Alliance (IMEDA) weekly column titled "Learning Moments" and published online.
Hello fellow practitioners. Today’s column deals with the eligibility of work experience under different occupations for the purpose of meeting the minimum eligibility requirements under the Canadian Experience Class.
To qualify for the Canadian Experience Class, one needs 12 months of full-time (or equivalent part-time) Canadian work experience in a NOC 0, A or B job. Is it fine if our client has 4 months of full-time Canadian work experience in one NOC code and 8 months of full-time Canadian work experience in a different NOC code, as long as both positions meet the required skilled type/level? The colleagues I have asked have given me different answers so I am curious.
Unlike the requirements for the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program, which provide that the minimum qualifying experience must be continuous and in the same National Occupational Classification (NOC), experience under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) does not need to meet either of those requirements. As a result, a client can use non-continuous eligible work experience to meet the minimum CEC requirements and this experience can be in more than one NOC.
It is perhaps the different requirements between the FSW and CEC programs that lead to some confusion amongst colleagues.
The sections from the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations that apply to both programs have been reproduced below.
In the case of the CEC program, the Regulations provide that (emphasis added):
87.1 (1) For the purposes of subsection 12(2) of the Act, the Canadian experience class is prescribed as a class of persons who may become permanent residents on the basis of their ability to become economically established in Canada, their experience in Canada, and their intention to reside in a province other than the Province of Quebec.
Member of the class
(2) A foreign national is a member of the Canadian experience class if
(a) they have acquired in Canada, within the three years before the date on which their application for permanent residence is made, at least one year of full-time work experience, or the equivalent in part-time work experience, in one or more occupations that are listed in Skill Type 0 Management Occupations or Skill Level A or B of the National Occupational Classification matrix, exclusive of restricted occupations; and
Compare this to the text of the FSW program (emphasis added):
75 (1) For the purposes of subsection 12(2) of the Act, the federal skilled worker class is hereby prescribed as a class of persons who are skilled workers and who may become permanent residents on the basis of their ability to become economically established in Canada and who intend to reside in a province other than the Province of Quebec.
(2) A foreign national is a skilled worker if
(a) within the 10 years before the date on which their application for a permanent resident visa is made, they have accumulated, over a continuous period, at least one year of full-time work experience, or the equivalent in part-time work, in the occupation identified by the foreign national in their application as their primary occupation, other than a restricted occupation, that is listed in Skill Type 0 Management Occupations or Skill Level A or B of the National Occupational Classification matrix;
Andrew Carvajal is a Toronto lawyer and partner at Desloges Law Group specializing in immigration law, administrative law and Small Claims Court litigation.