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Recognition of Foreign Credentials for Newcomers to Canada

Posted on 10 Dec'09 in Canada and US Immigration

Finally the Canadian Federal Government has taken meaningful action on the issue of credentials recognition, creating the foreign credential referral office and giving people a head start on the process before they get to Canada.

The Prime Minister, Mr. Stephen Harper exercised leadership this January, leading the Premiers and Territorial leaders in an agreement that has led to the announcement of a pan-Canadian framework for foreign credential recognition that will accelerate the process of recognising the professions and training of immigrants to Canada.

Bob Dechert, Member of Parliament for Mississauga – Erindale commented “Enabling foreign trained Canadians to practise their chosen professions in Canada is critically important to our Country, our economy and the dignity of the skilled workers that we have invited to this great nation.”

Under the new Pan-Canadian Framework of Assessment and Recognition of Foreign Qualification, foreign-trained workers who submit an application to be licensed or registered to work in certain fields will be advised within one year whether their qualifications will be recognized.

Achieving Canada’s economic potential requires that immigrants are able to use to the fullest their skills and experience within the Canadian Labour market.

Foreign qualification recognition is the process of verifying that the knowledge, skills, work experience and education obtained in another country is comparable to the standards established for Canadian professionals and tradespersons.

There are a multitude of players involved in the assessment and recognition of foreign qualification. There are nearly 500 professional regulatory authorities and numerous credential assessment bodies in Canada, as well as hundreds of post-secondary and vocational institutions and countless numbers of employers, immigrant serving agencies, and most importantly, immigrants and other internationally-trained workers.

Qualification recognition for regulated occupations is mainly a provincial and territorial responsibility that has often been delegated in legislation to professional regulatory authorities. Through the Agreement of Internal Trade, Federal, Provincial and Territorial governments agreed to eliminate inter-provincial barriers to the free movement of workers, goods, services and investments,

Building upon these advances, governments recognize that we are collectively faced with both the opportunity and the need for moving forward in a concerted way on issues of foreign qualification recognition. However, recognition of foreign qualifications in one jurisdiction requires that other jurisdictions accept that licensing decision. Once a Province or Territory certifies an internationally trained individual, he or she cannot be treated any differently for certification purposes than a domestically trained worker.

Disclaimer: The above article is not a legal opinion as every case is different and is only for general awareness. Please contact us for specific questions and legal advise.

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Disclaimer: The above article is not a legal opinion as every case is different and is only for general awareness. Please contact us for specific questions and legal advise.