HOW MUCH MONEY DO YOU NEED FOR EXPRESS ENTRY?
Many economic immigrants apply to come to Canada in hope of a better future. A higher paying job, better quality of life or better prospects for your children can all motivate you to pick up and leave your home. One of the biggest barriers to immigration for many applicants is cost. But exactly how much does it cost to immigrate to Canada? Express Entry is the most popular economic immigration pathway, but how much money do you need for it?
The exact amount of money that you’ll need to come to Canada through Express Entry will depend on your profile. But, in general, there are three major costs associated with an Express Entry application:
- Government Processing Fees
- Proof of Settlement Funds
- Representative Fees
In addition to these major fees, there may also be fees associated with the various documents that you’ll require for your Express Entry application. For example, you may need to pay for an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) for any post-secondary education received outside of Canada. You may also need to pay to take the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) for immigration. There can also be costs associated with renewing your passport, or obtaining police clearance certificates or medical reports.
Government processing fees have to be paid to IRCC in order to process your file. There are two types of government processing fees: the processing fee and the right of permanent residence fee.
The processing fees are:
- $550 CAD for you
- $550 CAD if you have an accompanying spouse or common-law partner
- $150 CAD for each dependent child.
The right of permanent residence fees are:
- $490 CAD for you,
- $490 CAD if you have an accompanying spouse or common-law partner.
There is no right of permanent residence fees for dependent children.
Keep in mind that these fees are subject to change by IRCC. The fees listed here are accurate as of December 15, 2017. Check out the IRCC website for the most up-to-date fees.
PROOF OF FUNDS
You may be required to show proof of funds if you are applying for Canadian permanent residence through Express Entry. The proof of funds requirement, or proof of means of financial support, is required under certain immigration streams to ensure that the applicant has enough money available to support themselves and their family as they settle into a new life in Canada.
You don’t need to spend this money. But you do need to prove to the visa officer that you could spend it.
If the applicant is unable to provide proof of funds documentation, their application will likely be refused or rejected.
WHO COUNTS AS FAMILY?
If required, you must submit proof of funds to support yourself and your family members. In this case, family members refer to yourself, your spouse or common-law partner, and all dependent children.
Please note: the proof of funds is required for all family members regardless of whether or not they plan to accompany you to Canada. This means that even if your spouse plans to stay in your home country, they still count towards your total family members.
In this instance, family members do not include relatives outside of your partner and children, like parents, siblings, and cousins.
IS THIS REQUIRED FOR ALL PROGRAMS?
Not for all programs. The proof of funds requirement applies to all applicants using the Express Entry system except for those:
- Applying under the Canadian Experience Class program, or
- Applying with a valid job offer supported by a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment
Note that provinces may have their own specific proof of funds requirements for Provincial Nominee Programs. As well, as Quebec does not participate in the Express Entry system their proof of funds are separate from those listed in this article.
MINIMUM SETTLEMENT FUNDS REQUIREMENT
The Settlement Fund requirement changes every year because it is calculated as 50% of the Low Income Cut-Off, which is determined by the Federal Government.
|No. Of Family Members||2017 Low Income Cut-off||Minimum Funds Required|
|For each additional Member||$6,628||$3,314|
These funds must be available at the time an applicant submits their electronic Application for Permanent Residence (eAPR). They should be maintained while the application is in processing, as a visa officer always maintains the right to request updated documentation.
You can choose to hire a representative, either a lawyer or a certified immigration consultant, to help you prepare and submit your Express Entry file. The fees associated with hiring a representative will depend on the representative you choose.
If you choose to hire a representative, make sure they are authorized to represent you. An immigration consultant must be a member of the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC). A lawyer must be a member of a Canadian provincial or territorial law society.