Canada Immigration

FSW Outland – Application, Processing time and Draws

FSW is an acronym for Federal Skilled Worker, FSW outland is a program created for foreign nationals who wish to migrate to Canada to be selected amongst a host of other applicants based on their skills and work experiences.

What is the FSW Outland program?

The FSW Outland program is a means for skilled candidates outside Canada who want to settle down in Canada to apply for permanent residency.

The Federal Skilled Worker program is among the three programs under the Express Entry Program, the other two are the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) and the Canadian Experience Class (CEC). The Federal Skilled Worker program unlike CEC does not require applicants to have Canadian work experience.

These three programs are highly competitive and CRS (Comprehensive Ranking System) is used to rank candidates who qualify for applying for permanent residency.

Who is the FSW Outland Program for?

The Federal Skilled Worker Program is for professionals who wish to reside in Canada Permanently. The system then ranks candidates according to the amount of points scored to determine who qualifies to apply for Permanent Residency.

Who is eligible to apply under the FSW Program?

To qualify for the Federal Skilled Worker program, there are certain requirement you have to meet in terms of work experience, age, language proficiency (French or English), and level of education.

Work Experience

In terms of work experience, an FSW Outland candidate must have completed a minimum of one year of continuous, full time, skilled work experience. This should be within the last 10 years. Work experience should fetch a candidate 15 points max if the candidate fits the above requirement.


The age of a candidate also determines the amount of points you get in the age category. FSW Outland Candidates within the ages of 18-35 years with be awarded 12 points. Candidates above 35 will have one less point while candidates from age 47 years and above will not get any points at all.

Language Proficiency

The maximum point for Language proficiency is 28 points. To attain this, FSW outland candidates have to reach a minimum of CLB level 7 on an approved English or French Language test. CLB stands for Canadian Language Benchmark.

Level of Education

As an FSW outland candidate looking to gain points for your level of education, you must possess a Canadian High School Diploma or the equivalent of the Diploma in foreign education. The maximum amount of points that can be awarded for your level of education is 25 points.

Each level of education comes with different points with the highest being doctoral (PhD) level.

Other eligibility requirement include residence in Canada and financial support. Candidates must be willing to reside outside the province of Quebec and must have enough financial resources to support themselves and any other family member they intend relocating with.

How to apply for the FSW Outland Program

The first step to applying for the FSW Outland program is to create an Express Entry Profile and submit it to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Once your entry has been submitted, you will be assigned a CRS score.

As an FSW Outland candidate, you will be required to provide the following documents

  • Educational Credential Assessment (ECA)
  • Language Proficiency Test Results
  • Identification Documents

Educational Credential Assessment (ECA)

For a candidate to be assigned points for education, such candidate must provide an ECA report that attests to the quality of your foreign education by Canadian Standards. This report shows that your foreign education is equivalent to its Canadian counterpart.

This however, does not apply to candidates whose credentials is from a Canadian institution. If you had your education in Canada and you are applying under the FSW program, you do not need an ECA report.

Language Proficiency Test Result

Candidates applying under the FSW program must provide result from an approved language test which must have been taken within the last two years.

Approved language test for English Language includes IELTS and CELPIP exams. For French Language there is TEF and TCF exams.

 Identification Document

Ideally, all candidates should possess a valid means of identification. Also, spouses or family members of candidates should possess valid identification documents.

Once you provide the necessary documents and have passed the minimum point, the next step is to receive an Invitation To Apply (ITA). This is where you are to apply for Permanent Residency, you have 60 days after receiving this invite to apply and submit your application.

The next step after this is to undergo a medical checkup, every FSW candidate must be screened for health conditions. If after the medical checkup a candidate is diagnosed with a serious medical condition, such candidate may be considered inadmissible depending on the severity of the condition.

After this, you would be required to submit an e-Application which would be reviewed by a Canadian Immigration Officer.

The next step is to receive confirmation on your Permanent Residency status. If your application is approved, you will receive o Confirmation Of permanent Residence Document (COPR). An official at the IRCC will then sign on documents where Permanent Residence is granted with dates attached.

FSW Outland Draws

After creating and submitting your express entry profile, draws would then be announced and applicants would receive their Invitation to Apply (ITA).

FSW Visa Processing Time

All Federal Skilled Workers Visa usually take about 6 months or less to be processed.

Applying under the FSW program, whilst being one of the easiest ways to immigrate to Canada, does not automatically mean you would be granted ITA. The program is highly competitive and you would be required to have a very high score to increase your chances.

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