February 2019 Newsletter

CKR Law’s Véronique Malka & Sherry Neal appear on Canada’s Global News Radio 640 to discuss Global Mobility

Véronique Malka, Partner at CKR Law and Canada Chair of the Global Mobility Group, and Sherry Neal, Partner at CKR Law, attorney in the US division of the Global Mobility Group, appeared on Global News Radio 640 Canada on February, 28, 2019. They joined host Tasha Kheiriddin to discuss a number of issues including:

  • CKR’s vision: using the term ‘Global Mobility’ instead of ‘immigration;’
  • The option of ‘benching’ or ‘parking’ foreign workers in Canada while they await their new US visas;
  • How NAFTA 2.0 will affect NAFTA visas already issued;
  • And more…

To access the 11 minute show, please visit:


CKR Law’s Global Mobility Group can assist foreign nationals all over the world with their mobility needs, both individual and corporate, with emphasis on US & Canada cross border movement. For more information, please visit us at https://www.ckrlaw.com.


 For those seeking to move to Canada, here is what our Canadian Law Group recommends (of course, we recommend obtaining good legal advice based on the specific facts of your case):


Many foreign nationals have not yet secured a Master’s degree, or a post-graduate diploma. Canada offers attractive student visas and even premium processing for prospective students from four countries (Philippines, India, China, Vietnam) through the Student Direct Stream. CKR Law has had clients successfully submit ‘dual intent’ study permits where the applicant (and their dependent family members, if applicable) also acknowledge their intent to apply for Permanent Residency following the completion of their study period. The Student Direct Stream (SDS) promises processing times of 45 days, which is under the 60 days needed for regular study permits.


When a foreign national considers a move to Canada, they automatically think “Vancouver,” “Montreal” or “Toronto.” However, there are a number of attractive Provincial Nominee Programs, and even Regional programs, aimed at attracting talented candidates. For example, the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program targets foreign skilled workers (high skilled & intermediate skilled streams) and international graduates to Atlantic Canada, namely to New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Permanent Residence through the Foreign Skilled Worker Program, also commonly known as “Express Entry”, is notoriously competitive. Ontario and British Columbia are popular provinces for candidates to select. Some of our clients who were unable to meet the high CRS threshold for Express Entry found, success with various Provincial Nominee Programs that may target a vocation based on current shortages a province is experiencing. Our Province of the Month series outlines provincial requirements for business and investor candidates to immigrate to Canada.


If the Company you are currently working for is global, with offices in Canada, then the intra-company transfer (ICT) may be for you. A number of formalities must be met, such as working in a qualifying position and having worked continuously for that company for at least one year in the three preceding. Unlike in the U.S.A., you must also still be working for that Company. The ICT model is also favourable for multi-nationals operating across North America as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) covers ICTs and facilitates the movement of qualified employees. We see large Corporations, such as Microsoft, moving employees to Canada through ICTs while the employee’s new US status is being approved. Talk to a CKR Law mobility lawyer to see if you qualify!


Unsure about whether you’re ready to commit to moving to the Canada yet? Are you hesitant about the cold, despite Canada being named the #1 Country for Quality of Life for the 4th year in a row? Then visit! The West coast boasts beautiful temperate rainforests and beaches, particularly on Vancouver Island, while the Canadian Rockies are world renowned for both hiking and leisure. Toronto, and Montreal, famous metropolitan hubs on the East Coast, are a mere 330 miles apart, while Canada’s capital region, Ottawa, is a short detour on route. The further East Maritime Provinces are famous for their natural beauty, including Gros Morne National Park and the Bay of Fundy, while also catering to urbanites through mid-sized cities such as Halifax. Once you actually visit Canada, it may help show an IRCC Officer that you are actually “serious” about moving there.


Canada has an attractive Start-Up visa program which helps key employees immigrate all while securing funding, incubation and growth through government endorsed incubators, angel investors and accelerators. The Waterloo-Toronto Tech corridor is attractive for tech related startups, given the comparatively low prices for setting up shop, especially when compared to Silicon Valley, California. Blockchain is also big business, given start-up Ethereum’s dominance in the Blockchain market.

Canada currently presents attractive investment and business opportunities for the cannabis industry since cannabis was officially legalized on October 17, 2018. The cannabis industry in Canada is projected to reach $5 billion USD by 2022 while amendments to the Cannabis Act expected to be rolled out in the next 1-2 years are allowing for collaborations between cannabis, and the drinks sector.

Whether you own a start-up or already have an existing business and are looking to expand North, CKR Law’s Global Mobility team can assist you in the cross-border movement of key employees, and their families. We work with cross border corporate lawyers, IP lawyers, and tax specialists. We also work with key players in the financial field to offer advice and introductions to investment opportunities in Canada, as well as to help you fine tune your business plan for Canadian immigration purposes. We are ready to assist in all your needs.


Nova Scotia is only 1.5 hours by plane from New York, the same distance from NY to Toronto.  When we tell our clients this, they are often surprised.  Since we believe that Nova Scotia presents valuable employment opportunities for foreign workers, we often recommend choosing that province over others in Canada when setting up your Express Entry profile online.  What can also happen, by selecting Nova Scotia, is that the Province will view your profile and have the option of selecting you from the pool if you meet its needs.  You are sent what is called an “Interest letter” and this means you have received a “Provincial Nomination” by the NSOI.

In late January 2019, Nova Scotia randomly selected eligible financial auditors and accountants to apply for a nomination for permanent residence through its Labour Market Priorities Stream.  These selected applicants needed to have at least five years of work experience in NOC 1111 — Financial auditors and accountants. Candidates drawn by Nova Scotia had to meet these additional criteria:

  • They had submitted an Express Entry profile on or after July 1, 2018;
  • Had a CRS score between 400 and 450;
  • Had a bachelor’s degree OR completed a program of three or more years at a university, college, trade or technical school, or another institute;
  • Language (CLB) skill level of 7 or higher in English or French for speaking, listening, reading and writing; and
  • Five years or more of work experience in NOC 0, A or B, with letters of reference from employers to demonstrate proof of a minimum of 5 years of work experience in NOC 1111.

Candidates with a provincial nomination obtain an additional 600 Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points in the Express Entry program.  This essentially means that they move right to the top of the line for an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for Canadian permanent residence in the next draw and are almost guaranteed to receive an ITA.

In order to be nominated by the Province, the work experience outlined in the Express Entry profile must match the job description for the targeted occupation listed in the federal government’s NOC 2016.  The letters of reference from the employers to confirm this work experience have strict requirements.

Once a Letter of Interest is received from the NSOI, an applicant has only 30 calendar days to submit a complete application for a Nova Scotia provincial nomination. We cannot overemphasize how little time this gives any applicant, even with the help of a lawyer, to file a proper case.  Having said that, we are accustomed to moving quickly to equip our clients with the best chances of success.

What is interesting about this last draw by Nova Scotia is that it grabbed candidates with only 400 points, whereas the federal pool of Express Entry draw was over 440.  Lesson learned: It may definitely be worthwhile for candidates with less than 440 points to enter the pool, especially if they are willing to consider more remote (but incredible) provinces in Canada like Nova Scotia. We cautiously expect the CRS points on the Federal Express Entry Stream to keep rising so it is time to consider other options.

For more information, please contact Partner Véronique Malka at vmalka@ckrlaw.com.