The Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC)

The Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC) is a Canadian permanent residence pathway for foreign nationals with experience in a skilled trade. The aspiring applicants looking to immigrate to Canada under the Federal Skilled Trades Program must first go through the federal Express Entry System.  The FSTC allows individuals with a valid job offer or a certificate of qualification to obtain permanent residence in any Canadian province or territory other than Quebec.

Eligibility Criteria for the Federal Skilled Trades Class

In order to qualify for a Canada Immigration (Permanent Resident) Visa, Federal Skilled Trades applicants must:

  • have valid job offers of continuous, paid, full-time employment (at least 30 hours a week) from up to two employers in Canada for at least one year OR a certificate of qualification* from a provincial or territorial body;
  • provide proof of basic language proficiency from a designated language testing organization, demonstrating that the applicant meets the minimum threshold set by the Minister — Canadian Level Benchmark (CLB) 5 for speaking and listening, CLB 4 for reading and writing;
  • have obtained 2 years of full-time work experience (or an equal amount of part-time work) in the skilled trade in the five years before applying; and
  • be able to demonstrate the skills and experience and that they have performed the essential duties of the occupation.

*A certificate of qualification proves that a foreign national is qualified to work in a skilled trade occupation in Canada. With a certificate of qualification, applicants prove they have passed a certification exam or met all the requirements to practice their trade in a specific province or territory.

The Federal Skilled Trades Class candidates must plan to reside outside the province of Quebec. The province of Quebec selects its own skilled workers through a unique immigration system.

The FSTC is one of three federal economic programs managed by the Government of Canada’s Express Entry System. This means that in order to begin the process of immigrating to Canada as a tradesperson, you must first create an online Express Entry profile and obtain a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. The CRS determines your ranking in the Express Entry pool based on factors like skills, work experience, language ability, education and others.

FSTC candidates may have lower CRS scores than other candidates in the Express Entry pool because they are not required to prove their level of education.

Please contact our office to find out if you are eligible for the Federal Skilled Trades Class.

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