Opportunities Ontario Updates: What’s New?

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Visit this page to stay current with news, announcements and new developments in the Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program.

October 31, 2014

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program has met its 2014 target of 2,500 nominations. Applicants can still submit their applications under all streams. However, because the nomination target has been reached, Opportunities Ontario is unable to issue nominations for the remainder of 2014.

Nominee applications that have been received but have not been finalized in 2014 will automatically be placed in priority for finalization in 2015. Any application received after October 31, 2014 will be assessed as part of the 2015 nomination target. 

Annual provincial nomination targets are determined by the Federal Government, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).

Please continue to check this website for updates.

Effective August 1, 2014

Effective August 1, 2014, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is changing the definition of a dependent child for immigration programs (including the Provincial Nominee Program class). Children will be considered a dependent if they are under the age of 19. No exceptions will be made for children who are full-time students.

In all cases, a child with a mental or physical condition will continue to be considered a dependant, regardless of age, if they depend on their parents for financial support.

All permanent resident applications received by CIC and all PNP applications received by the province before August 1, 2014 will continue to benefit from the pre-amendment definition of dependent child. Please note that a complete application has to be received before August 1, 2014. Applications postmarked on July 31, 2014 or earlier, but not received until August 1, 2014 or later will be subject to the new definition.

In addition, as of August 1, 2014, a child’s age will be recorded as when the application is first submitted to the province. If they are eligible at this time, they will remain eligible throughout the application process.

For example:

Step 1: An applicant with a child aged 18 applies to The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).

Step 2: The applicant is assessed and nominated by the province for permanent residence (PR).

Step 3: The applicant consequently gathers required documents and submits his/her PR application to CIC, but their child is now over 19 years old. CIC would accept the age of the child on the date of the PNP application (locked in date).

More information on the impact of the change to the definition of dependent child is available on CIC's website as of August 1, 2014.

March 12, 2014

Opportunities Ontario’s nomination target for 2014 is 2,500. The program has also updated its Service Standard and information on Reconsideration Requests.

Nomination Target

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program has successfully met its 2013 target of 1,300 nominations.

The nomination target for 2014 is 2,500 for all streams of the program. Please visit our website for any updates.

Annual provincial nomination targets are determined by the federal government, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).

Service Standards

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program is committed to timely processing of applications, greater transparency to clients and courteous, helpful customer service.

We process applications on first-come-first-served basis and aim to finalize:

  • Complete* employer application packages within 64 business days or 90 calendar days
  • Complete* nominee application packages within 64 business days or 90 calendar days
  • Complete* reconsideration requests within 85 business days or 120 calendar days

*An application is not deemed complete until all missing or required supplementary information is received by Opportunities Ontario. This date can be the date of application receipt, or the day when the last piece of information required from the client arrives to Opportunities Ontario. The processing clock will begin at this point. The processing clock stops when the final decision is made by the program.

Please note that Opportunities Ontario does not process applications during the months of January and December and that time accumulated during this period is not included in the processing time calculation for applications.

Opportunities Ontario aims to meet our service standards in at least 80% of all applications.

Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

Reconsideration

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program gives applicants an opportunity to seek a review of the denial decision of their application. This process is called Reconsideration.

Opportunities Ontario’s reconsideration process is in place to provide applicants recourse to the denial of their case should they feel an error was made by the program. Written request for reconsideration must be made within 15 business days of receiving the denial letter if applicants are in Canada. For applicants outside of Canada, the written request must be received within 30 business days of receiving the denial letter. Full details on filing a reconsideration request will be provided in the notification of denial.

Reconsideration requests are reviewed by an official who was not involved in the original decision and who occupies a higher position than the original decision-maker. The reconsideration decision is final.

Please note that a reconsideration request will consider eligibility at the time of application. A decision will not be reconsidered on the basis of a change in circumstances from the time of application submission. In these instances nominee applicants should submit a new application to the program. Nominee applicants submitting a new application are required to pay the application fee for the new application.

September 20, 2013

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program (Opportunities Ontario) has reached its 2013 allocation of 1,300 nominations. Applicants can still submit their applications under all streams. However, because the nominations target has been reached, Opportunities Ontario will no longer be able to issue any additional nominations for the remainder of 2013.

Should Opportunities Ontario’s nomination allocation be increased this year a new communication with the details will be posted on this website.

Nominee applications that cannot be finalized in 2013 will automatically be placed in priority for finalization in 2014. Complete nominee applications will be finalized on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Please continue to check this website for updates.

Please note:

  • Applications from employers and investors remain unaffected and will continue to be accepted and finalized for the remainder of 2013.
  • Opportunities Ontario will not be returning applications or refunding fees.
  • After this year’s nomination target is met, the 90 day processing time will not apply to applications thus delayed.

Applicants can contact us our office with any questions or for more information about the status of their application.

For questions about Ontario’s cap of nominations, applicants can contact Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What does this mean for current Opportunities Ontario nominee clients?

    Once Opportunities Ontario has reached its nomination target, it will no longer be able to issue additional nominations in 2013. Current nominee applicants who have submitted their application in 2013 and are deemed eligible for nomination will be placed in a priority queue for nomination on a first-come first-serve basis in early 2014.

  2. What does this mean for prospective Opportunities Ontario nominee clients?

    Nominee applications submitted for the remainder of 2013 will be delayed. Prospective nominees can still apply to the program but their complete applications will not be processed within the program’s service standards of 90 calendar days. Application received for the remainder of this year will have to be finalized in early 2014 when the program will receive a new allocation of nomination spots.

  3. What does this mean for new employer and investment clients?

    Employers and investors who wish to apply to Opportunities Ontario can continue to do so. The processing of employer and investor applications is not affected by the nomination target. Employers and investors must first apply to Opportunities Ontario and get approval before nominee applications can be complete and processed.

July 23, 2013

Opportunities Ontario recently updated some of its applications forms. Opportunities Ontario is moving towards having all of its application forms in a PDF format. This move will eliminate confusion by having one single format for all program forms and ease client experience, as the PDF forms are now in a saveable format. Opportunities Ontario will no longer accept application forms in a Microsoft Word format.

Opportunities Ontario is taking a phased approach to updating its forms. As part of first phase, the following forms have been updated to a saveable PDF format:

  1. Employer Pre-Screen Application
  2. Pre-Screen Application for Previously Approved Employers
  3. Nominee Application for International Graduates (PhD and Masters)
  4. Nominee Application with Job Offer

Please note that there are no changes to program criteria or documentation. However, Opportunities Ontario updated employer forms to:

  1. Clarify requirements around local recruitment efforts, and
  2. Ask employers to identify their sector of activity using the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).

To view and download the updated forms, please visit the forms and guides page of Opportunities Ontario.

Opportunities Ontario will continue to accept old forms until the end of August 2013. Beginning September 1, 2013 applicants are required to submit the new forms, otherwise forms may be returned to the sender.

Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

June 20, 2013

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program has successfully met its 2012 target of 1,100 nominations.

The nominations target for 2013 is 1,300 for all streams of the program. Please visit our website for any updates.

Annual provincial nomination targets are determined by the federal government, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).

December 18, 2012

In late 2012 Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) allocated an additional 100 nomination spots to Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program (Opportunities Ontario) for 2012.

Opportunities Ontario reached its 2012 target of 1,100 nominations at the end of November. Applicants can still submit their applications under all streams. However, since the nominations target is reached, Opportunities Ontario will no longer be able to issue any additional nominations in December 2012.

Nominee applications that cannot be finalized in 2012 will automatically be placed in priority for finalization in 2013. Complete nominee applications will be finalized on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Annual provincial nomination targets are determined by the federal government, CIC. In 2013, Opportunities Ontario will receive a new allocation of nomination spots as of January 1st 2013.

Please continue to check this website for updates.

Please note:

  • Applications from employers and investors remain unaffected and will continue to be accepted and finalized for the remainder of 2012.
  • This does not affect the Federal Skilled Worker Backlog Reduction Pilot, which has a separate nomination target of 600 for 2012, beyond the 1,100 allocated to Opportunities Ontario.
  • Opportunities Ontario will not be returning applications or refunding fees.
  • Applicants can contact our office with any questions or for more information about the status of their application.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What does this mean for current Opportunities Ontario nominee clients?

    Since Opportunities Ontario reached its nomination target, it will no longer be able to issue additional nominations in 2012. Current nominee applicants who have submitted their application in 2012 and are deemed eligible for nomination will be placed in a priority queue for nomination on a first-come first-serve basis in early 2013.

    The 90 day processing time will not apply to applications thus delayed.

  2. What does this mean for prospective Opportunities Ontario nominee clients?

    Nominee applications submitted for the reminder of 2012 will not be affected. Prospective nominees can still apply to the program as their complete applications will be processed within 90 calendar days and finalized in early 2013 when the program will receive a new allocation of nomination spots.

  3. What does this mean for new employer and investment clients?

    Employers and investors who wish to apply to Opportunities Ontario can continue to do so. The processing of employer and investor applications is not affected by the nomination target. Employers and investors must first apply to Opportunities Ontario and get approval before nominee applications can be complete and processed.

November 23, 2012

As of November 5, 2012, Opportunities Ontario is able to issue support letters for open work permits for skilled workers nominated by the program under the Federal Skilled Workers Backlog Reduction Pilot (FSW Pilot).

The support letters for open work permits will be issued to all nominees nominated under the FSW Pilot. The letters will allow FSW Pilot nominees to apply for an Ontario specific open work permit with a validity of up to two years. The open work permit will allow FSW Pilot nominees to come to Ontario faster and start working in the province before they receive their Permanent Resident status.

Opportunities Ontario will make this letter of support available to all FSW Pilot nominees and will be mailing packages in the next two months.

For more information about the open work permit, please visit the Nominees – What’s Next section.

To view Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Operational Bulletin, please visit http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/manuals/bulletins/2012/ob470.asp.

July 23, 2012

Opportunities Ontario is now able to issue support letters for open work permits for international students nominated by the program under the PhD or Masters graduates without job offer streams.

The support letters for open work permits will be issued to provide assistance to certain graduates who require a means of maintaining or establishing status in Canada while they transition to Permanent Residence (PR) in Ontario. An open work permit issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) would provide a bridge from student to worker for those nominees whose temporary authorization to remain in Canada following graduation would expire between the province’s nomination and the anticipated finalization of the student’s PR application. Opportunities Ontario will use its R204(c) authority under the Canada-Ontario Immigration Agreement and its Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Annex to facilitate the issuance of open work permits.

International students are expected to apply for a Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) to obtain temporary authorization to remain in Ontario. Only when PGWP avenue does not provide sufficient authorization to bridge an international student nominee to PR will Opportunities Ontario issue an open work permit.

For more information about the eligibility for the open work permit, please visit the Nominees – What’s Next section.

To view Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Operational Bulletin on Ontario’s new authority please visit http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/manuals/bulletins/2012/ob406.asp.

May 3, 2012

Please note that Ontario extended the deadline to apply to the Federal Skilled Worker Backlog Reduction Pilot (FSW Pilot) from May 4, 2012 to May 31, 2012.

For more information about the application criteria and process, please visit the FSW Pilot application page.

March 29, 2012

To get more skilled workers into Ontario faster, the province is working with the federal government to help reduce the backlog under the Federal Skilled Workers Program through the FSW Backlog Reduction Pilot (FSW Pilot).

Ontario is assisting with this backlog by nominating up to 600 additional foreign workers this year (2012). This is a separate component to the existing Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program (Opportunities Ontario). Opportunities Ontario’s nominations cap of 1,000 for 2012 will remain for the other parts of the program.

CIC has issued letters to all potential applicants, inviting them to apply to Ontario’s FSW Pilot. Please note that only individuals who received this letter may apply to Ontario’s FSW Pilot. Applicants will have until May 4, 2012, to submit an application to Opportunities Ontario.

For more information about the application criteria and process, please visit the FSW Pilot application page.

December 1, 2011

Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has changed how it processes permanent residence applications submitted by provincial nominees.

Effective December 1, 2011, all provincial nominees must submit their permanent residence applications to CIC's Centralized Intake Office (CIO) in Sydney, Nova Scotia.

To allow for a transition period, CIC will continue to accept applications at visa offices until March 31, 2012. After March 31, 2012 Ontario nominees must submit their permanent residence applications to CIO in Sydney, Nova Scotia.

Opportunities Ontario has updated the approval package we send to provincial nominees, as of December 1st, to reflect the changes to CIC's processes.

For more details on this new federal government process Ontario’s provincial nominees can visit CIC’s website or contact our office. Provincial Nominees should always consult the federal government’s website for the latest updates with regards to permanent residence application process.

June 30, 2011

As a result of changes made by the federal government, as of June 30, 2011, the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) is the regulator of immigration consultants. Immigration consultants in good standing with the Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants (CSIC) on June 30, 2011, can begin to register with the ICCRC. As a transitional measure, CSIC members have a 120 days’ grace period ending on October 28, 2011 within which to register with the new governing body. (Source: Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council)

To reflect the federal government’s transitional measures, between June 30, 2011 and October 28, 2011 Opportunities Ontario will be accepting applications from persons represented by CSIC members in good standing or, transitional or full members of ICCRC. (Please note that Opportunities Ontario will accept CSIC members in transition, who are not in good standing with CSIC due to non-payment of fees.)

After October 28, 2011, Opportunities Ontario will only accept applications from persons represented by members in good standing of the ICCRC.

May 27, 2011

Opportunities Ontario has updated application forms, which gather additional information that is most commonly requested during processing of the application and will therefore improve processing.

  • Form 149 - Employer Pre-Screen Application Form
  • Form 152 - Joint Verification Form
  • Form 178 - Pre-Screen Application Form for Previously Approved Employers
  • Form 179 - Nominee Application Form Foreign Workers and International Students with a Job Offer
  • Form 196 - Nominee Application for International Graduates (PhD and Masters)

Please read the guide or information sheet carefully as it contains important information on how to complete the new forms.

Effective June 2, 2011, only the new version of the application forms will be accepted by Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program. Submissions received after this date, using the old forms, will be returned with a request to re-submit with the new forms. To ensure you have the most recent application forms, visit the Forms & Guides page.

September 14, 2010

Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program is expanding to allow international students graduating from Masters programs in Ontario to apply for permanent residence without a job offer.

As part of the Open Ontario Plan to create new opportunities for jobs and growth, the province is increasing the number of international students by 50 per cent while maintaining spaces for Ontario students.


Transcript | Mobile

August 4, 2010

Opportunities Ontario has provided additional information on what is acceptable Canadian work experience.

June 14, 2010

International students who have graduated from a publicly funded Ontario university with a Masters degree can now apply to the program without a job offer as part of Opportunities Ontario’s new pilot.

International students who have graduated from a publicly funded Ontario university with a Masters degree may now qualify without a job offer from an Ontario employer under the Pilot International Masters Graduate Stream. Interested graduates need to submit a Nominee Application Form for International Graduates (PhD and Masters) directly to the program. For more information, please visit the International Students section of the website.

April 21, 2010

International PhD graduates who have graduated from a publicly funded Ontario university can now apply to the program without a job offer.

International PhD graduates who have graduated from a publicly funded Ontario university may now qualify without a job offer from an Ontario employer under the International PhD Graduates Stream. Interested PhD graduates need to submit a Nominee Application Form for International PhD Graduates directly to the program. For more information, please visit the International Students section of the website.

April 15, 2010  Facebook

Are you an international student? Interested in updates on the program? Want to connect with others interested in Opportunities Ontario? You can now learn more about the program on our Facebook page.

Opportunities Ontario has launched its own Facebook page designed specifically for international students who are interested in learning more about how to qualify for the program. Students can visit often to learn about the latest updates and also post questions they may have.

July 20, 2009

The Nominee Application Form is now available on this website.

Opportunities Ontario has made it easier for prospective nominees to apply to the program. Prospective nominees can now complete the Nominee Application Form electronically before printing and submitting the completed form to Opportunities Ontario. Please consult the Nominee Application Guide for detailed instructions on how to complete the Nominee Application Form.

Only individuals who have been issued a valid pre-screen file number are eligible to use this form. Nominee Application Forms from individuals without pre-approved Ontario employers will be returned. No record will be kept of the submission. Individuals found using this form fraudulently may be disqualified from future participation in any immigration program with the Government of Ontario.

For prospective nominees without Internet access or experiencing technical problems, please contact us for assistance or to request a Nominee Application Form to be sent by mail. Prospective nominees can contact Opportunities Ontario at 1-866-214-6820 (toll free in North America) or by e-mail at Opportunities.Ontario@ontario.ca.

July 8, 2009

Opportunities Ontario brochures are now available.

Opportunities Ontario brochures for employers, foreign workers, international students and investors as well as a general brochure explaining the program are now available on this website.

June 17, 2009

The Investment Referral Form is now available on this website.

The Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration (MCI) is the first point of contact and referral for investors interested in using the Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program. By completing this Investment Referral Form, prospective investors will assist MCI to determine the most appropriate ministry to assess the investment proposal. After completing this Referral Form, prospective investors may send it to Opportunities Ontario electronically at Opportunities.Ontario@ontario.ca.

February 20, 2009

The Ontario Pilot Provincial Nominee Program became Opportunities Ontario: Provincial Nominee Program (Opportunities Ontario) on February 20, 2009.

Opportunities Ontario can nominate up to a maximum of 1,000 newcomers in 2009, many of whom are expected to be accompanied by their immediate family members. All prospective nominees must have full-time permanent job offers from pre-approved employers in a NOC 0, A or B occupation in order to be eligible.

Applications are processed on a first-come-first-served basis subject to the program criteria. Employers should apply early, as the number of potential nominations is limited.

Read the news release and backgrounder on this website.
 

 
 
 
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