Federal Skilled Worker

Historically, modern Canada was formed as a country of immigrants and continues to actively welcome newcomers through various government programs. Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) is one of three main federal immigration streams available within the Express Entry system. The Canadian government designed Express Entry to assess candidates for Canadian Permanent Residency based on their skills and other factors. This points-based system checks the eligibility of candidates by assessing their age, level of education, skilled work experience, knowledge of official Canadian languages, and other adaptability factors.


To be eligible for Federal Skilled Workers (FSW) program, a candidate must score 67 points or higher out of a maximum of 100 points. The evaluation is based on six factors:

Education (25 points maximum).

The higher is the candidate’s education, the more points one can receive. A high-school completion diploma gives just 5 points. However, a university degree at the Ph.D. level is worth 25 points;

Language Skills (28 points maximum).

24 points are given for the knowledge of the first language. Candidates can score a maximum of 6 points for each of four language skills (one’s listening, speaking, writing, and reading). An additional 4 points are given for the second official language;

Work Experience (15 points maximum).

Candidates can get points for the number of years they’ve spent working in a full-time paid position;

Age (12 points maximum).

Candidates between 18 and 35 get maximum points, and from 36 to 47, the number of points awarded progressively decreases. Candidates aged 47 and over score 0 points;

Arranged Employment (10 points maximum).

A candidate is given 10 points if he or she has a job offer that is at least 1 year-long from a Canadian employer.;

Adaptability (10 points maximum)

These points are given based on an applicant’s ability to establish themselves in Canada. Maximum points can be awarded for full-time work in Canada, spouse or common-law partner’s merits, or a combination of six other possible adaptability factors.

However, even if a candidate meets all the minimum eligibility criteria, only the highest-ranking candidates in the Express Entry pool are issued invitations to apply for Canadian permanent residence.

Application process

Applying through the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) stream involves:

  • creating an online Express Entry profile and uploading all the necessary documentation;
  • if invited to apply, a candidate will need to prove their ability to become economically established in Canada by showing available settlement funds (this requirement can be waived for those who are currently authorized to work in Canada and/or have arranged employment in Canada);
  • candidates and their dependents must complete their medical examinations;
  • obtaining security clearances to prove that they are admissible to Canada.
  • paying application fees (principal applicant, as well as Spouse or common-law partner, pay $1,040 CAD ($550 processing fee + $490 right of permanent residence fee);
  • waiting for the decision (IRCC aims to process complete Federal Skilled Worker applications in six (6) months or less, but this time frame is not guaranteed).

Performance Immigration will help you to immigrate through the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) stream. Contact us for details!