Effective Friday, September 17, a province-wide mandatory masking order will be implemented for all indoor public spaces. 

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Immigration FAQs

Overview

Updated as of October 26, 2021.

This page addresses recent inquiries received by the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) from those impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19.

This page will be regularly updated to reflect the most accurate information available as the situation develops.

If your question is not addressed on this page or you require additional information, please contact SINP customer service staff at immigration@gov.sk.ca or 1-833-613-0485.

SINP Temporary Measures for Nominees or Applicants Affected by COVID-19

I'm a SINP nominee or existing applicant and my employment situation has changed. What happens with my SINP immigration application if my employment changes (lay off or termination)? Will I lose my nomination or need to leave the province?

  • SINP applicants working in the province on a temporary work permit must continue to meet the minimum criteria of the SINP category under which they applied, including a full time (30 hours/week) employment with an approved employer that meets the conditions of their existing work permit.
  • All existing nominees will be issued a conditional nomination if the terms of their employment offer associated with their original SINP application have been changed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the nominee no longer meets the minimum criteria of the SINP category through which they received their nomination. Once the criteria is met again, within four months, the conditions will be removed in order for the nominee to obtain permanent residency.
  • As of November 1, 2021, all existing nominees whose terms of employment have changed (termination, lay-off) will have 45 days to find another employment offer that meets the conditions of their existing work permit. If the existing nominee is unable to find another employment offer that meets the conditions of their existing work permit, they may request an extension to the 45 days.
  • The SINP must be notified immediately if the job held by a nominees or existing applicant changes, they are laid off, or their job is terminated. Withholding this information is misrepresentation.

Please contact the SINP by calling 1-833-613-0485 or emailing Immigration Services at immigration@gov.sk.ca if you have questions about your application.

I am living in Saskatchewan and am a SINP nominee, existing applicant or interested in applying to the SINP. What type of jobs are eligible under the SINP during a pandemic?

  • An employment offer is considered valid for SINP applicants and nominees if it is from an employer(s) with a valid Certificate of Registration who has provided the worker with a Job Approval Letter. The worker must meet the conditions of their work permit. If the employment offer(s) meet these requirements, the SINP will allow the following temporary measures:
    • Until October 28, 2021, for nominees and applicants in Saskatchewan, eligible employment can be in NOC 0, A, B, C or D occupations.
    • Nominees will have up to four months to obtain new, eligible employment if the job offer associated with their original SINP application no longer exists. Extensions may be given depending on individual circumstances.
    • Potential applicants that have been living and working in Saskatchewan for at least six months will be eligible to apply to the SINP with 780 hours of work experience (equivalent to six months at 30 hours per week), whether through full-time or part-time work. However, the applicant must be working 30 hours per week in one job or more and meet all of the applicable SINP criteria in order to be nominated to the program.
    • If a worker does not have an open work permit, they will need to obtain a new work permit from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The SINP will issue them a new employer-specific work permit support letter where required. A worker cannot legally work for a new employer until a new work permit is obtained.
  • Nominees and applicants must continue to economically support themselves with the exception of short-term supports. If nominees or applicants access short-term income support during the pandemic, they will not be penalized.

What is the Saskatchewan Graduate Temporary Measure? Am I eligible to apply?

  • The Saskatchewan Graduate Temporary Measure is a temporary measure that has been enacted by the SINP to support international students residing in Saskatchewan impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19. Students living in Saskatchewan prior to September 1, 2020, who have graduated from a post-secondary designated learning institution in Saskatchewan may be eligible to apply through this Temporary Measure.

Who do I contact to get more information about the SINP?

Changes Affecting SINP Applications and Nominations

How do I submit a request for a revision and/or extension?

  • SINP has recently updated the procedures for requesting a revision and/or extension to a Nomination Certificate. These requests will now be made through your application portal.

How long do I have to request an extension to my Nomination Certificate after it has expired?

  • Nominees will now have 90 days after the expiration of their nomination to apply for an extension.

Applications for Permanent Residence

I just applied or am in the process of applying for Permanent Residence. Will there be delays in processing my application?

  • Federal processing times have been impacted due to the pandemic. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) posts their processing times online at Check Processing Times and updates them weekly.

I am a Permanent Resident applicant and have not yet arrived to Canada. Will the travel ban affect me?

  • Travel restrictions and exemptions can change quickly. It is recommended that Permanent Residence applicants check IRCC's website to learn if they are eligible to travel to Canada and what documents they may require.

Temporary Workers and Residents in Saskatchewan

What other federal measures have been put in place or are being considered for temporary workers?

  • Please see the IRCC website to confirm what to do for your biometrics.
  • No application in progress will be closed or refused because of documents that are missing due to COVID-19. Make sure to keep checking online to see when the VACs and other biometrics collection sites start to reopen. Once you are able, complete the steps, including making an appointment to give your biometrics, as soon as possible to avoid delays.

I am a temporary resident in Canada and my status is about to expire. I have applied or am about to apply to extend my status. What happens now?

  • IRCC has confirmed that temporary residents who are currently in Canada are able to apply to extend their status online if they need to extend their status.
  • A temporary resident who has applied to extend their status is allowed to remain in Canada until a decision is made on their new application, even if their initial status expires while they are waiting for that decision. This is called maintained status (previously called implied status).
  • If you need documentation from the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) to apply to the federal government for the extension, please visit Revise or Extend an SINP Nomination.

Can I travel to a port of entry to request service?

I am a temporary resident who is unable to leave Canada. What happens now?

  • If you are a temporary resident in Canada, more information can be found on the Government of Canada, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada's page on temporary residents.

I am planning to travel. What is the current advice?

If my work permit expires and I can't get it extended quickly, how can I get my driver's licence extended?

  • As a result of COVID-19 pandemic, SGI may renew licences if you have proof that you've applied for a work permit extension. Please contact SGI for more information at 1-800-667-9868.

What health insurance is available for Temporary Foreign Workers?

  • If you are a TFW with maintained status (formerly implied status), please contact eHealth to discuss your ability to extend your health coverage. eHealth can then advise you of the documents that are required to be submitted for review.

To start working in Saskatchewan (switch from visitor to temporary worker), or to change my employer on my work permit, I need to apply or reapply for a work permit. Will I get "maintained status" (formerly implied status) from IRCC and be able to start working during the temporary work permit application process?

  • Individuals on temporary permits are considered under maintained status (formerly implied status) if they apply before the expiry of their current status. Maintained status will be in effect until the decision on their application is received.
  • Individuals with maintained status can only continue doing what they were authorized to do on their existing permit while waiting for a decision on their new permit application.
  • This means that they can only work for the employer that is listed on their original work permit if they had a closed work permit.
  • If the person was authorized to be in Canada as a visitor, they may remain in Canada as a visitor on maintained status while they wait for the decision on their work permit. They may not begin working until their work permit application is finalized and approved.

For SINP International Skilled Worker (ISW) applicants in Canada, will they get "maintained status" (formerly implied status) from IRCC during the temporary work permit process if they've never had a work permit before e.g. those on a visitor visa?

  • Someone who has maintained status can only continue doing what they were authorized to do on their existing permit. If the person was authorized to be in Canada as a visitor, they may remain in Canada as a visitor on maintained status while they wait for the decision on their work permit, provided they apply before the expiry of their current status. They may not begin working until their work permit application is finalized and approved.

I don't feel safe in my workplace what can I do?

  • If you're being abused or at risk of being abused in relation to your job in Canada, you may be eligible for a new federal open work permit for vulnerable workers.
  • It's illegal for anyone to request or require payment from a foreign worker for a job or to recoup employer recruitment costs or salary that is paid to workers. Saskatchewan's Foreign Worker Recruitment and Protection Unit will investigate evidence to determine if there are violations of The Foreign Worker Recruitment and Immigration Services Act.
  • To share information or to learn more, contact us by email at: FWRISA@gov.sk.ca

Employment Search

How do I find a job?

  • Employees who have been laid off or have had their employment affected can seek the services of SaskJobs - Career Services for assistance. Career Services can provide information and tools to help workers with a job search.
  • Job openings can be advertised in several places, including websites, newspapers, job fairs, and community bulletin boards. SaskJobs.ca is the largest job site in Saskatchewan. For more information, please visit Finding Work.
  • The SINP has Temporary Measures for nominee or applicants whose employment has been affected by COVID-19. See SINP Temporary Measures for Nominees or Applicants Affected by COVID-19 (above) for more information.

Immigrant Entrepreneurs in Saskatchewan

I have closed my business due to the State of Emergency and economic downturn. Do I still need to fulfill the terms of my Business Performance Agreement (BPA)?

  • Yes, you are still required to fulfill the terms of your BPA.  If you cannot modify your business operations to eliminate public-facing services, you may temporarily suspend your business operations until the State of Emergency is lifted.
  • If you are on a Temporary Work Permit (TWP) that may expire this year, please contact the SINP at saskentrepreneur@gov.sk.ca to request a BPA extension and updated TWP Support Letter to be used to apply for an extension to your work permit. TWP applicants who have applied for an extension before the expiration of their current permit will be considered under "implied status" until the federal government can process your permit extension application.

Contacting Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)

How do I get a hold of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)?

  • You can contact IRCC through a web form.
  • You can also contact IRCC by telephone at 1-888-242-2100 (in Canada only)
    • Automated telephone service (available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week): If you have a touch-tone telephone you can listen to pre-recorded information about our programs, and check the status of your application.
    • Client Support Centre agents - Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., your local time, except for statutory holidays. Services are available in French and English. Agents can help you with general and case specific enquiries. They cannot:
      • make decisions on applications; or
      • help process applications faster, unless you meet the criteria for urgent processing.
  • Further details on how to contact IRCC are available at Client Contact Support Centre.
  • IRCC posts their service standards for responses to web form inquiries and application processing. These standards change regularly. Fore more information about the service standards visit: Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada service standards - Canada.ca

Travel Restrictions

What is the situation in Saskatchewan?

What travel bans have been put in place?

  • Travel restrictions and exemptions can change quickly. It is recommended that Permanent Residence applicants and anyone planning to travel to Canada check IRCC's website to learn if they are eligible to travel to Canada and what documents they may require: https://travel.gc.ca/travel-covid

Who is exempt from the travel ban?

  • The Government of Canada has provided a COVID-19 Travel: Checklist for requirements and exemptions. For more information on the exemption and entry requirements and access to the checklist:

What screening measures are currently in place for travellers?

I intend travel to Saskatchewan or I am a new permanent resident, where am I required to show proof of vaccination?

  • All travellers entering Canada must follow testing and quarantine requirements to keep everyone safe. Under certain conditions, you may be exempt from some of these requirements.
  • Effective October 1, 2021, a provincial requirement for proof of vaccination or negative test will be implemented for public access to a list of establishments, businesses and event venues that bring groups of people together, including:
    • Indoor dining at restaurants;
    • Nightclubs, bars, taverns and other licensed establishments;
    • Event and entertainment venues;
    • Indoor fitness centres and gyms.

International Students in Saskatchewan

Are international students exempt from the travel ban?

Are there provisions being made for international students who may not be able to arrive as they initially planned?

  • Typically, Canadian universities/learning institutions offer international students who have been accepted or gotten admission, the flexibility to delay starting for up to a year from when they were admitted. International students are advised to contact their intended institution of study directly to find out what provisions have been made available for international students affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.

Are international students who are concerned about restrictions on distance learning going to be able to apply for a post-graduation work permit?

  • Courses of study being delivered online on an exceptional basis due to COVID 19 will not affect Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Program eligibility.

As a study permit holder, am I still allowed to work?

  • As per usual, study permit holders who are allowed to work off-campus are permitted to do so for 20 hours/week while classes are in session and full-time during scheduled breaks.

What is the status of study permit applications?

  • The processing of study permits for students will continue in anticipation of the fall study term. IRCC will continue to process applications to the extent possible. Study permit applications require biometrics, and many visa application centres that normally provide this service are closed. As a special measure, due to COVID-19, applicants are now being given 90 days instead of the standard 30 days to give biometrics.
  • International students can apply online to extend their status before it expires, thereby obtaining maintained status while IRCC processes their application. Implied status allows them to continue to study and/or work subject to the conditions of existing study or work permit.

International Skilled Worker EOI System

Who will use the Expression of Interest (EOI) system?

  • The EOI system will be used by persons who want to apply to the SINP through the Occupations in Demand or Express Entry sub-categories. These are two very popular sub-categories that required the use of application thresholds in the past to make sure that the SINP had a manageable application inventory that results in competitive processing times.

What is an EOI system?

  • An EOI is the first step for individuals interested in applying to become permanent residents in Saskatchewan. They use the EOI system to show they are interested in applying to either the Occupations in Demand or Express Entry sub-categories under the SINP.
  • Candidates will register in the SINP's online system and complete an online EOI profile. As part of this profile, candidates will enter basic information about themselves including name, date of birth, home country and email address and then self-assess using the SINP point assessment grid.
  • Once the profile has been completed, the candidate will submit their expression of interest and be entered into a candidate pool.
  • Candidates that meet EOI selection criteria will be selected from the EOI candidate pool by the SINP, through an EOI draw, and they will receive an Invitation to Apply to the SINP. At this point, applicants will be asked to submit additional information and documentation in order to submit a complete online application, as well as pay the non-refundable application processing fee of $350.00 Canadian.

How is an EOI profile created?

  • All that is required to create an EOI profile is an account in the SINP's online application system (OASIS), and basic information about you and your qualifications. This includes contact information and information about your education, work experience, age, official language ability, and connections to Saskatchewan.
  • You can access a guide that explains the steps at International Skilled Worker EOI System.

What happens if I can't apply within 60 days of being invited to apply?

  • Once you are invited to apply, your EOI profile will be removed from the EOI pool. If you don't apply within 60 days, your Invitation to Apply will expire.  You will need to create a new EOI profile if you remain interested in applying to the SINP.

What happens if the EOI point score, which an EOI candidate claims, is not accurate?

  • Upon application to the SINP, if an applicant is found to have completed the EOI profile and self-assessment fraudulently, they will be refused and prohibited from reapplying to the SINP for a period of two years.
  • If applicants are assessed by the SINP as having a lower point score than their self-assessed point score and they made an authentic mistake regarding their self-assessment, their application will not be processed and it will be returned. This will be done to be fair to other candidates in the EOI pool who had accurate or higher point scores and were not selected. However, the applicant will be able to resubmit a new EOI profile and be considered for future Invitations to Apply.

What happens to those Expression of Interest candidates that are not selected from the pool? What does it mean that EOI profiles are only valid for one year? Can individuals reapply?

  • Candidate profiles entered into the candidate pool that are not invited to apply will be removed from the pool after one year, at which time you are able to resubmit a profile if you choose to do so.
  • This allows the SINP to eliminate profiles of people who are no longer interested in applying. The one year timeline begins when the EOI is submitted. After one year, your EOI profile status will show as expired.

How many people will be invited at each draw? How often will draws occur?

  • The size and frequency of EOI Selections are based on labour market need, provincial priorities, and the number of applications processed since the last EOI Selection. Selections will take place every two months, at a minimum. The dates of the draws will not be communicated ahead of schedule.
  • The range of point scores and a description of the attributes of the group of candidates chosen in the draws will be shown on the International Skilled Worker EOI System page.

How to Use OASIS

The SINP's online application system, OASIS, is used to administer program applications and issue correspondence. Please review the OASIS User Guide for additional information about how to use and navigate OASIS.

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