How to Apply

Candidates must ensure that all of the federal eligibility criteria are met to participate in the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP). They must also have a qualifying job offer. Carefully review the information on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website to determine your eligibility.

Update: Candidates Selected as of April 17th, 2022 Draw Date

A total of 22 candidates were recommended whose evaluations scored as low as 46%.

Thunder Bay CEDC has recommended a total of 65 candidates in 2022 thus far.

Process

Step 1: Meet federal eligibility requirements

Candidates can determine their eligibility for the RNIP by reviewing the criteria set by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Step 2: Obtain a qualifying job offer with an approved employer

Candidates must have a full-time (minimum 30 hours per week), permanent job offer. View full details on job offer requirements.

Thunder Bay CEDC does not provide job-matching services or assist employers in hiring. View a list of positions pre-approved for the RNIP or visit gotothunderbay.ca/work for a list of job banks non-specific to the program. Employers not yet approved to participate in the RNIP can be assessed at any time.

Qualifying job offers may fall under three categories:

Type 1: Priority Occupation

Type 2: French Essential Position

  • The occupation is in any skill level and any NOC code
  • The job requires the use of the French language to perform the main duties

Type 3: Any other occupation

  • The occupation has not been deemed priority
  • The candidate has lived in Thunder Bay for at least two (2) years and is currently employed with the employer

Step 3: Gather documentation and submit application

Candidates must prove their eligibility by submitting valid documentation and required forms. Download Thunder Bay CEDC’s RNIP application instructional guide and submit an application.

Step 4:  Review and Evaluation by Thunder Bay CEDC

In addition to the federal eligibility criteria, applicants will be evaluated on additional factors that indicate their intent to live and work in Thunder Bay over the long term after they have received permanent resident status. View community evaluation criteria below.

Candidates are selected using a pool-and-draw system in which the top scorers with all necessary documentation are prioritized. Candidate selection will take place once monthly on the following schedule:

February 15, 2022

March 15, 2022

April 19, 2022

May 17, 2022

June 15, 2022

July 19, 2022

August 16, 2022

September 20, 2022

October 18, 2022

Applications must be received before the draw date to be selected for review on the draw date. The highest-scoring candidate applications are validated by Thunder Bay CEDC and prepared for the Selection Committee’s review. Only candidates who are being considered for a community recommendation will be notified.

Candidates not selected for review remain in the pool and may be selected at a later date if their ranking improves. Applications will not be considered if they are incomplete and/or do not meet federal eligibility criteria.

If you wish to estimate your score without submitting an application, use our estimated points calculator. Note that this is not a candidate application and points estimates are not reviewed by Thunder Bay CEDC.

Step 5: Application Review by Selection Committee

Selected candidate applications will be reviewed by the Community Selection Committee who will either approve or deny the recommendation. Candidates may be requested for a virtual interview.

Candidates who are selected for review will be notified of the decision on their application within eight (8) weeks of the draw date immediately following the date their applications were received.


Step 6: Community Recommendation

Thunder Bay CEDC will provide community recommendation letters to candidates who are approved by the Selection Committee.

 

Step 7:  Apply for Permanent Residence

With the community recommendation letter, recommended candidates can apply directly to IRCC for permanent resident status.

Employers are able to obtain a work permit for the candidate so that they can start in the job while awaiting IRCC’s decision regarding the permanent residence application.

Step 8: IRCC Review of PR Application

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will perform further assessment, including a medical review, financial review, and criminal record checks. IRCC makes the final decision regarding permanent resident applications. Those who are granted permanent residence will be notified by IRCC.

Employment Opportunities

View our list of postings for eligible jobs or visit gotothunderbay.ca/work for a list of job banks non-specific to the RNIP.

Job postings are not required to be published on our website to be eligible for the RNIP and employers not yet approved to participate in the RNIP can be assessed at any time.

Skills & Occupational Caps

Thunder Bay CEDC is limiting the number of community recommendations granted in Year 3 of the Pilot to applicants whose job offers are in the following NOC codes and skill levels.

Skill Level or National Occupational Classification (NOC) Code

Maximum Number of Recommendations

Cooks (NOC 6322)

10

Chefs (NOC 6321)

10

Security Guards (NOC 6541)

10

Retail Sales (NOC 6421)

20

Food Service Supervisors (NOC 6311)

10

Non-Priority Job Offers

60

Recommendations made in capped NOCs as of May 16th, 2022

Cooks (NOC 6322):  8 recommendations (maximum 10)

Chefs (NOC 6321):  1 recommendation (maximum 10)

Security Guards (NOC 6541):  2 recommendations (maximum 10)

Retail Sales (NOC 6421):  2 recommendations (maximum 20)

Food Service Supervisors (NOC 6311):  7 recommendations (maximum 10)

Non-Priority Job Offers:  2 recommendation (maximum 60)

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I eligible for the RNIP?

To be eligible for the RNIP, candidates must have a qualifying job offer and meet Federal eligibility criteria. Visit the Government of Canada’s website to review eligibility criteria.

How do I obtain permanent residency via the RNIP?

For candidates who meet all Federal eligibility criteria, the first step is obtaining a qualifying job offer. View Thunder Bay CEDC’s step-by-step process (above) to learn how the program works.

I would like to speak to someone to determine my eligibility for the RNIP in Thunder Bay. Who can I contact?

All of the eligibility requirements for the RNIP can be found online.  To determine if you meet the Federal eligibility for the program, please visit the Government of Canada’s website and view Thunder Bay CEDC’s step-by-step process (above) to learn how the program works. We kindly ask that you do not call the Thunder Bay CEDC offices with inquiries regarding your eligibility. 

 

I believe I am eligible for the program but I have not received a response to my application for a community recommendation. When will Thunder Bay CEDC tell me if I will be recommended or not?

In addition to the federal eligibility criteria, applicants will be evaluated on additional factors (outlined below) that indicate their intent to live and work in Thunder Bay over the long term after they have received permanent resident status. Thunder Bay CEDC uses a pool-and-draw system in which the applicants that score the highest are prioritized. Only candidates who are being considered for a community recommendation will be notified. Candidates not selected for review remain in the pool and may be selected at a later date if their ranking improves.

 

If you wish to estimate your score without submitting an application, use our estimated points calculator. Note that this is not a candidate application and points estimates are not reviewed by Thunder Bay CEDC.

 

I have emailed and called the Thunder Bay CEDC regarding the RNIP and have not received a response. What can I do?

We sincerely apologize for the lack of response.  Thousands of inquiries have been received from all over the world and we are forced to prioritize based on eligibility.  Eligible candidates may submit an application for a community recommendation. Inquiries from individuals who do not have qualifying job offers and do not meet federal eligibility will not be prioritized.

 

I believe I am eligible for the RNIP but do not have some of the documents (eg: Educational Credential Assessment, language test, etc.). Can I still apply for a community recommendation?

No. Only candidates who have the documentation needed to prove that they meet all eligibility criteria may apply for a community recommendation. Candidates without all necessary valid documentation will not be considered for a community recommendation.

 

IELTS Test Centres are closed. Does this affect my ability to apply to the RNIP?

Yes. Applicants must have valid language results to apply for a community recommendation.  If you have not completed language testing, you will have to wait to apply for RNIP until the testing centres reopen.  Please note that results of IELTS Academic language tests are not acceptable for the purposes of immigration through the RNIP.

 

I am a candidate within Canada and my work permit will expire before I can apply for the RNIP. What can I do?

If you find yourself in a situation where you are concerned about your status in Canada, please seek professional immigration advice. We are unable to advise on immigration matters outside of the RNIP.

 

I am interested in migrating to Thunder Bay through the RNIP. Can Thunder Bay CEDC help me find a job?

Unfortunately, we do not provide job matching services. Candidates must apply for jobs directly with employers. View priority occupations and job postings, or visit gotothunderbay.ca/work for a list of job banks non-specific to the RNIP.

 

Which employers are designated to offer jobs under the RNIP?

We do not provide a list of approved employers. If you have a job offer with an employer who has not yet been approved, refer them to the Employer Application. View current employment opportunities that are approved for the RNIP, or visit gotothunderbay.ca/work for a list of job banks non-specific to the RNIP.

 

How long does the RNIP process take?

For most candidates, the process of receiving permanent resident status can take up to one year or longer.  The timeline can be impacted by many factors such as:

  • how competitive the pool of applicants is (highest-scoring applicants will be considered first)
  • where the candidate is located (Canada or outside of Canada)
  • the candidate’s personal circumstances, and any medical and/or inadmissibility issues
  • capacity of Thunder Bay CEDC and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to process applicants


When will Thunder Bay start accepting applications for community recommendations?

Candidate applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

 

What is the cost to apply for Permanent Resident status under the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP)?

The application fee for permanent residence under the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is CAD $1325.  This fee consists of both a processing fee ($825) and a right of permanent residence fee ($500).  Additional fees apply to those with a spouse and dependents.  You can find the full fee schedule on the Government of Canada’s website.

 

There are no additional application fees associated applying for a community recommendation under the RNIP – Thunder Bay.

 

I am a refugee claimant. Am I eligible to apply for permanent residency through the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot?

No. Applicants must submit proof (to IRCC) that they have valid immigration status in Canada. Per Ministerial Instructions, If a foreign national is in Canada at the time of their permanent resident visa application, they must have temporary resident status.

 

Do I need to hire an immigration consultant or lawyer?

Preferential treatment is not provided to applicants who have hired an immigration representative. However, if you choose to have your paperwork completed by an immigration representative, please refer to the IRCC website for information on making an informed choice.

Community Factors Evaluation

The community recommendation factors have been updated for Year 3 of the Pilot (January through December 2022).  Thunder Bay CEDC will prioritize candidates for recommendation who are most likely to settle and reside in Thunder Bay and contribute to the local economy.

Candidates are selected using a pool-and-draw system in which the top scorers with all necessary documentation are prioritized. Download Thunder Bay CEDC’s RNIP application instructional guide.

Community Recommendation Factor

Maximum Points Achievable

Offer of Employment

20

Language Proficiency

20

Skills Alignment

20

Work Experience

8

Experience Living in a Small or Rural Community

16

Family Connections

8

Non-Family Connections

4

Spouse – Language

2

Spouse – Skills Alignment

2

Estimate your score on the application for a community recommendation using this tool: Points Estimate Calculator.

Offer of Employment

Maximum 20 points

 

Qualifying job offers may fall under three categories:

Type 1: Priority Occupation (20 points)

  • The job offer is full-time and permanent
  • The job offer is for a position that has been deemed a priority occupation

 

Type 2: French Essential Position (20 points)

  • The job offer is full-time and permanent
  • The occupation is in any skill level and any NOC code
  • The job requires the use of the French language to perform the main duties

 

Type 3: Any other occupation (0 points)

  • The job offer is full-time and permanent
  • The occupation has not been deemed priority
  • The candidate has lived in Thunder Bay for at least two (2) years and is currently employed with the employer

Required documentation:

Offer of Employment to a Foreign National – Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (IMM 5984)

Language Proficiency

Maximum 20 points


Candidate exceeds required CLB/NCLC in all 4 abilities (15 points)

Candidate exceeds required CLB/NCLC in at least 2 of the 4 abilities (8 points)

Candidate does not exceed required CLB/NCLC in any of the 4 abilities (0 points)

Candidate is bilingual (Proficiency in both English and French) (+5 points)

 

Required documentation:

  • Designated language test (the results must be dated no more than two (2) years prior to the time of your permanent resident application)
  • Bilingual candidates will require any one of the following in addition to a designated language test:
    • Proof of graduation from an academic program of 2 years or more where the program’s primary language of instruction was in either English or French
    • An official language (score of CLB/NCLC 4 or higher on all language factors)
    • Undergo an interview with a member of the Thunder Bay RNIP team

 

Review IRCC’s website to learn how to find your language level based on your test results.

 

Where the Thunder Bay CEDC is not satisfied that the applicant is proficient in both official languages, an additional interview or language results demonstrating a CLB/NCLC 4 or higher may be requested in order to assess for these points.

Skills Alignment

Maximum 20 points

 

Candidate has qualifying education credential or work experience that aligns with the needs of the job (20 points)

Candidate’s education or work experience does not align with the needs of the job (0 points)

 

A qualifying educational credential must

  • Be equivalent to minimum one year Canadian college certificate
  • Satisfy the employment requirements as described in the Government of Canada National Occupation Classification Profile for any of Thunder Bay’s priority occupations

 

Qualifying work experience

  • Must be at least two years (3,120 hours) of cumulative paid full-time (or the equivalent in part-time) within the past 5 years in a position where the candidate performed some or all of the main duties of the position that is the current job offer
  • Can be with multiple employers in different occupations, however, work experience acquired through self-employment is not acceptable


Required documentation:

  • Copy of Canadian certificate/diploma/degree or educational credential assessment (ECA);

or

  • Letters from previous employers, records of employment, contracts and job descriptions, or pay stubs that prove that the candidate performed some or all of the main duties of the position that is the current job offer

 

Work Experience

Maximum 8 points

 

Candidate has 5+ years of related work experience (8 points)

Candidate has 4-5 years of related work experience (6 points)

Candidate has 3-4 years of related work experience (4 points)

Candidate has 2-3 years of related work experience (3 points)

Candidate has 1-2 years of related work experience (1 points)

Candidate has less than 1 year of related work experience (0 points)

 

Required documentation:

  • Letters from previous employers, records of employment, contracts and job descriptions, or pay stubs that prove that the candidate performed some or all of the main duties of the position that is the current job offer
Residence in Thunder Bay or Small Community

Maximum 16 points

Candidate has resided in Thunder Bay for 5+ years (16 points)

Candidate has resided in Thunder Bay for 4-5 years (13 points)

Candidate has resided in Thunder Bay for 3-4 years (10 points)

Candidate has resided in Thunder Bay for 2-3 years (7 points)

Candidate has resided in Thunder Bay for 1-2 years (5 points)

Candidate has resided in Thunder Bay for 6 months (3 points)

Candidate has resided in a community with a population of less than 250,000 people and more than 100 kilometres from a large and densely populated urban area for a minimum of 6 months (3 points)

Candidate has not resided in a small or rural community for a minimum of 6 months (0 points)

Required documentation:

  • Two (2) pieces of official mail which are dated to show the appropriate span of time

Both documents must show name of candidate, date, and residential address. Other personal details and/or financial information should be blacked out or covered.

*this section was updated on 16/02/2022 to include the correct points for residence including an option for 4-5 year range

Connections and Supports in the Community – Family

Maximum 8 points

 

Candidate has 4 eligible family members (8 points)

Candidate has 3 eligible family members (5 points)

Candidate has 2 eligible family members (3 points)

Candidate has 1 eligible family member (2 points)

Candidate has no eligible family members (0 points)

 

Eligible family members of the candidate and/or spouse must be (Permanent Residents or Citizens) who have been living in the community for a minimum of 2 years. Family includes parents, grandparents, siblings, children, aunts, uncles, and cousins.

 

Required documentation:

  • Letters of support written by family members that describe how they intend to assist the candidate with their settlement in Thunder Bay

 

Letters must include the family member’s name, status (permanent resident or citizen), relationship to candidate, contact information (phone number and email address at a minimum), and length of time residing in Thunder Bay. Family members must be 18 years of age or older. One letter is required per supporting family member.

Connections and Supports in the Community – Non-Family

Maximum 4 points

 

Candidate has 4 eligible connections (4 points)

Candidate has 3 eligible connections (3 points)

Candidate has 2 eligible connections (2 points)

Candidate has 1 eligible connection (1 points)

Candidate has no eligible connections (0 points)

 

Required documentation:

  • Letter(s) of support written by connections that describe how they intend to assist the candidate with their settlement in Thunder Bay, or give a reinforce the candidate’s intent to reside based on personal knowledge of the candidate

 

Letters must include the person’s name, status (permanent resident or citizen), relationship to candidate, contact information (phone number and email address at a minimum), and length of time residing in Thunder Bay. Non-family connections must be 18 years of age or older. One letter is required per supporting connection.

 

 

 

Spouse – Language Proficiency

Maximum 2 points

Candidate’s spouse is proficient in either English or French (2 points)

Candidate’s spouse is not proficient in English or French (0 points)

The spouse’s language skills must be adequate for entering the workforce in Canada.

Required documentation:

  • Copies of official language results;

or

  • Proof that their education was instructed in one of Canada’s official languages;

or

  • Participation in a brief interview with a member of the Selection Committee conducted in English or French
Spouse – Qualifications

Maximum 2 points

Candidate’s spouse has qualifying work experience or education (2 points)

Candidate’s spouse does not have qualifying work experience or education (0 points)

 

Required documentation:

  • Educational credentials;

or

  • Letters from previous employers, records of employment, contracts and job descriptions, or pay stubs that prove that the spouse performed some or all of the main duties of at least one (1) priority occupation
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