Happy New Year 2019

Working hours during the Holidays

Santa Claus is coming to town.
Santa Claus begins his journey in Canada’s north. Children through the decades have addressed their letters to: Santa Claus; North Pole; Canada H0H 0H0. Santa normally replies to all letters. Seriously!

Merry Christmas, and a Happy and Healthy 2019 to all our clients, past, present and future, and to your families.

Upper Canada Immigration Consultants had a strong year in 2018, serving more clients, in more places, than we have ever done before. We look forward to helping our current and upcoming clients with their visa and permit applications; permanent residency; citizenship applications; entrepreneurship and business opportunities;and with return to Canada issues.

In 2019, we look forward to our annual trip to the Caribbean, possibly adding a stop in Trinidad to our regular trip to Guyana.

Holiday work hours

Our office closed at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on Monday December 31st. We were closed to be with our families until the start of business hours on Wednesday January 2nd.

After business hours, during weekends, and on Canadian statutory holidays, we check e-mail, but may not respond, meet with clients (in person, by phone or on WhatsApp) until the next working day,

Google e-mail issue

Gmail accounts issue resolved

For our friends and clients who use personal Gmail accounts to send and receive e-mail, please know that in late November, it appeared some overzealous programmer at Google concluded that businesses like ours, that correspond with international clients (like you) beyond their home country’s borders, must therefore be spammers. Google has since rectified the issue, whatever it was.

The problem was that we could receive your Gmail messages, but Gmail wrongly bounced our replies. This had to be affecting countless other businesses like ours too. It lasted a few days before Google made changes, and the issue went away.

To ensure the reliability of your communications with us (or anybody you value for that matter), please be sure to tell your e-mail program (especially if you use Gmail) that the e-mail messages you receive from andrea@uppercanadaimmigration.ca are from a ‘safe sender.’

During this short period, we used our own Gmail account to correspond. You did not experience this issue corresponding with us from e-mail accounts from Yahoo, Hotmail or other providers. Just thought some of you might want to know.

Family Class

Updated: Important changes in Family Class

Rules changes
The rules and procedures regarding family class, sponsoring parents and grandparents, and who qualifies as a dependant have changed. Read this article, and call us for additional information, as these changes may apply to you.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has raised its annual quota to bring their parents and grandparents to Canada as permanent residents. The Government of Canada has significantly reduced its sponsorship backlog. Canada will admit a total of 20,000 sponsored parents and grandparents this year, an increase from the 17,000 quota for 2017. Nearly one million permanent residents will be accepted through various  immigration streams and programs between 2018 and 2021.

The Express Entry management system remains the main source of  newcomers to Canada, responding to the immigration dreams of skilled professionals, skilled trades and individuals who would have acquired Canadian work experience through such opportunities as a Post Graduate Work Permit and permits obtained through the Foreign Worker program.

The Caregiver program has been made more robust, with three streams through which individuals may apply for permanent residency. However, some important rules and procedures have changed as they apply to Family Class immigration, how you can sponsor your parent and grandparents to Canada, and who does and does not qualify as a dependant. Processing times for applications have been reduced, and the government has been demonstrating a dynamic approach to labour market needs as seen in recent Express Entry draws.

Family Class

In the next three years, Canada will welcome more than a quarter of a million new immigrants through family class sponsorships. These individuals will be sponsored by their Canadian citizen or permanent resident relatives as spouses, common law partners, dependant children, parents and grandparents.  Sponsorship of spouses and common-law partners along with dependant children is currently processed within a 12 month period as promised by the current government.

This processing time reflects a 50 percent reduction (from last year) in the time it now takes to receive a permanent resident visa under spousal sponsorship. As well, spouses and partners being sponsored from within Canada are permitted to apply for a work permit during processing time, and are therefore able to get a head start on their careers.  All spousal applications from outside Canada are now processed at CPC-Sydney, Nova Scotia. Before making a decision as to whether or not you should submit an application inside or outside Canada, please contact us for informed and expert advice and guidance.

Parents and Grandparents

Qualified citizens and permanent residents are able to sponsor their parents and grandparents through a streamlined process that was first introduced in January of 2017, requiring applicants to first express an interest in sponsoring their loved ones and then waiting for an invitation to apply. Random selections were made from the pool of interested potential sponsors and invitations were issued.

In January 2018, interested individuals  once again were able to first  express an interest in sponsoring their parents and grandparents by filling out an on-line application form within a strict timeline that spanned approximately four weeks. The requirement for 2019 is still the same for this first step. However, there  will no longer be random draws from the pool of interested applicants to submit a full-blown application.

Invitations will now be issued on a first-come-first-served process. This makes it especially important for sponsors to submit their expression of interest as soon as the portal is open, so that they can be among the first-come applicants who will receive an Invitation to Apply.

Successfully sponsoring your parents or grandparents requires submitting a complete and accurate application, with supporting documentation. If your family’s objectives are to bring parents or grandparents to Canada, you should consider working with us.

The number of permanent resident visas in 2018 for parents and grandparents has increased to 20,000. In 2019 the admission level  is set at  20,500, while 2020 will see the level rise to 21,000. If you are not successful in receiving an invitation to submit an application, you should consider submitting an application for a Super Visa (10-year multiple entry) for your parents or grandparents. Contact us to help you submit a successful application.

New definition of Dependant

As of October 24, 2017, a dependant for immigration purposes is defined as someone under the age of 22.

Previously, this definition referred to individuals under the age of 19 years.  As such, there is now an opportunity for individuals who were not able to come to Canada under the old definition,  to now be sponsored by their family in Canada, provided they still qualify under the new definition.

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Contact Info

Keep up to date with us

At Upper Canada Immigration, we use a mail list manager called Mailchimp. It is a powerful tool. It helps us keep in touch with you, and helps us get you specific information quickly.

If you don’t receive our e-mail newsletters, you may want to subscribe. If you do receive our e-mail newsletters, you should check to be sure the information we have on you is complete. A few notes for people unsure of what to share with us:

  • We assume we are dealing with serious and honest people whose interest in their future is genuine;
  • To help you, we have a genuine need to know where in the world you live, and how to contact you. Let us know who you are, and where you live. Or, if you receive our newsletter, please spend a few moments checking the information you may have given us earlier;
  • We respect your privacy, and don’t share your information in any way with anyone. Should you no longer wish to hear from us, the contact information you supplied is deleted when you unsubscribe to our e-mail newsletter.

Click here to see our latest e-mail bulletin, and link to your own information, or join the list.

Remember, other than you and us, the rest of the world will never see your info. We hope you enjoy our occasional (never too frequent) e-mail newsletters.


Express Entry Pool

It is time to get into the ‘Pool’

Express Entry Invitation to Apply
Here’s how you’ll feel if you are issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Permanent Residency in Canada. The key to getting that ITA is to work with us to maximize your score.

Chart a path to Canada through Express Entry. By creating a profile, individuals are ‘visible’ to the Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for program-specific draws and regular draws. From this pool of applicants, regular draws invite applicants with the best scores to apply for Permanent Residency in Canada.

We’ve updated our information on the Express Entry program. Be sure to either read it for the first time, or re-read it once more.

Canada’s strong economy, particularly in its heartland of Ontario, makes this path especially attractive  to applicants from the trades and professions; to those with language skills in Canada’s official languages; and to those with family ties to Canada.

This is an especially good time for young, qualified, and motivated individuals who are progressive thinkers to consider coming to Canada. Upper Canada Immigration can assist you in getting into the Express Entry system; help you to maximize your chances; and steer you toward an Invitation to Apply for Permanent Residency if your score has reached the threshold to be drawn.


Visa Lottery Scam

No such thing as a Canadian Visa Lottery

Immigration lottery scam
The Government of Canada has no ‘Visa Lottery.’ There is no such program that enables an applicant to ‘win’ a chance at immigration to Canada.

I have been receiving inquiries over the past few weeks from individuals all over the globe, and particularly from Africa, about something called a new Canadian Visa Lottery Application that purportedly allows applicants a chance to come to Canada on a permanent resident visa.

I have reviewed the posts and links that people have sent me with Canadian Visa Lottery Application Form 2017/2018 and Canadian Visa Lottery Application Form 2018/2019. This is a scam.

This Canadian Visa Lottery scam is a deliberate attempt to mislead you. It is a fraudulent attempt by certain websites to mislead you, and obtain your personal data, obviously with questionable intent.

Please beware of any posts and websites that tell you there is a chance to ‘win’ permanent residency in Canada through a lottery-type system. The Government of Canada has no such program or initiative.

There are more than 60 programs of the Government of Canadian to facilitate access to Canada, whether for temporary residency, or permanent residency. Additionally, there are special programs, initiatives and pilots that are administered by Canada’s 13 provincial and territorial governments that will allow you, based on their own set of criteria, to legitimately come to Canada.

These, along with a solid and reputable consulting firm like Upper Canada Immigration Consultants, are the only authorities that can provide you a chance to come to Canada. Do not be misled by something that sounds too good to be true, because it likely is just that.

For more information on how you can come legitimately to Canada as a skilled professional, a skilled trade, a visitor, a student, a sponsored family member, or to overcome an immigration hurdle, contact us at: andrea@uppercanadaimmigration.ca

The real deal

ICCRC consultants are the genuine article

As an Immigration Consultant, I handle issues that change people’s lives. This is a service that is complex, difficult, takes continuous ongoing training on my part, and takes time. That makes it, by definition, expensive. My clients may do this process once in their lives. For most of them, our fees represent an amount of money they don’t hand out daily. We do this work all the time, do it well, and do it correctly.

Sometimes, people ask if dealing with a licensed Canadian Immigration Consultant brings with it any form of success ‘guarantee.’ I answer that occasional question on this web site. Click or touch here. There are only about 4,600 licensed Canadian Immigration Consultants. At Upper Canada Immigration Consultants, we stick to the law, treat our clients fairly, and deliver value for money to serious people.

Atlantic Immigration Pilot

You need a job offer

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot Project is aimed at experienced, skilled and qualified immigrants to the four Atlantic Canada provinces: Newfoundland & Labrador; Prince Edward Island; Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. The initial challenge to apply for permanent residency to Canada through this pilot, is to obtain a job offer from a designated employer.

The threshold for language proficiency and proof of settlement funds is much more attractive than for Express Entry. And more importantly, it is not points based, as in the case of Express Entry.

Read the most commonly-asked Questions and Answers about the program.

Christmas 2017

Christmas greetings & Holiday hours

Christmas Card 2017

Merry Christmas to all our clients and friends, wherever in the world you are!

Holiday hours

Our Upper Canada Immigration people enjoyed their Christmas break. We are back at work for you, and accepting new and familiar callers.


Ontario youth drug coverage

Ontario’s 2017-18 signature Budget proposal means all eligible Ontario residents 24 years of age and less are fully covered for the cost of all 4,400 drugs in the Ontario formulary.

The Province of Ontario’s 2017-18 budget, passed in 2017, implements universal drug coverage for Ontario residents age 24 and less, and who are eligible for its Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP).

Ontario is the first Canadian province or territory to extend pharmacare coverage to its residents. Coverage for eligible Ontario residents is effective January 1, 2018. The entire Ontario drug formulary of more than 4,400 drugs is included, from routine prescriptions to expensive treatments.

Ontario Links

Newcomers to Ontario can qualify for the Ontario Health Insurance Plan if they are:

  • A Canadian citizen;
  • An Indigenous person (registered under the federal Indian Act);
  • A permanent resident (formerly called a “landed immigrant”);
  • Have applied for permanent residence, and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has confirmed that they meet the eligibility requirements to apply (i.e. have not yet been denied); are in Ontario on a valid work permit and are working full-time in Ontario, for an Ontario employer, for at least six months.

Your spouse and any dependents also qualify if you do. You are eligible to apply to OHIP if you are in Ontario on a valid work permit under the federal Live-in Caregiver Program, or are a convention refugee or other protected person (as defined by Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada).

OHIP annual health care premiums are among the lowest in the world.