Federal Skilled Trades Class (FSTC)
The federal skilled trades class (FSTC) is prescribed as a class of persons who may become permanent residents on the basis of their ability to become economically established in Canada as workers in a skilled trade occupation.
In order to qualify for a Canada Immigration (Permanent Resident) Visa, Federal Skilled Trades applicants must:
- intend to reside in a province other than the province of Quebec;
- meet the minimum language proficiency threshold set by the Minister for proficiency in English or French for each of the four language skill areas;
- have acquired at least two years of full-time work experience (or the equivalent in part-time work experience) in the skilled trade occupation specified in the application for permanent residence during the five years before the date of the application. This work experience must have been acquired after becoming qualified to independently practice that occupation, according to the regulations in place where the work was performed;
- have met the relevant employment requirements of that skilled trade occupation as set out in the National Occupation Classification (NOC), except for the requirement to obtain a certificate of qualification issued by a competent provincial authority; and
- have an offer of employment for continuous full-time work for a total period of at least one year from up to two employers in that skilled trade occupation or hold a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade from a Canadian provincial or territorial authority.
Skilled Work Experience
Skilled Trades currently eligible for the Federal Skilled Trades Program are organized under these major and minor groups of the NOC:
- Major Group 72, industrial, electrical and construction trades,
- Major Group 73, maintenance and equipment operation trades,
- Major Group 82, supervisors and technical jobs in natural resources, agriculture and related production,
- Major Group 92, processing, manufacturing and utilities supervisors and central control operators,
- Minor Group 632, chefs and cooks, and
- Minor Group 633, butchers and bakers.
These major NOC groups are subdivided into different occupations. (All are NOC skill type B.)
You must show that you did the duties set out in the lead statement of the occupational description in the NOC, including all the essential duties and most of the main duties listed.
If you do not show that your experience meets the description in the NOC, CIC will not accept your application.
Federal Skilled Trades Program applications must be made based on the 2011 version of the NOC. However, if the application includes a Labour Market Impact Assessment (previously Labour Market Opinion or LMO) from Employment and Social Development Canada based on the 2006 version of the NOC, it will be accepted by CIC as long as the applicant’s occupation corresponds to a 2011 NOC code that is eligible for the program.
There is no education requirement for the Federal Skilled Trades Program. But, if you want to earn points for your education under Express Entry, you either need:
- a Canadian post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree OR
- a completed foreign credential, and
- an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA) report from an agency approved by CIC. [The report must show your foreign education is equal to a completed Canadian secondary (high school) or post-secondary certificate, diploma or degree.]
- meet the minimum language level of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 for speaking and listening, and Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 4 for reading and writing, and
- take a language test approved by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) that shows you meet the level for speaking, listening, reading and writing.
You must show that you meet the requirements in English or French by including the test results when you complete your Express Entry profile. Your test results must not be more than two years old on the day you apply for permanent residence.
If you are married or live with a common-law foreign national partner in Canada, and that person also meets the above conditions, you can decide which one of you will apply under Express Entry as a principal applicant
A common-law partner is a person who has lived with you in a conjugal relationship for at least one year. Common-law partner refers to both opposite-sex and same-sex couples.
Look at each selection factor and see which one of you is most likely to meet the eligibility requirements and earn the most points. That person should apply as the principal applicant.
- You must be admissible to Canada. Find out more about inadmissibility.
- You must plan to live outside the province of Quebec.
Be assessed by the province or territory
You will likely have to go to the province or territory to be assessed. You may also need an employer in Canada to give you experience and training.
You should go to the website of the body that governs trades for the province/territory where you would like to live and work. The process is different depending on where you want to go.
Each website has more details about whether you need a certificate of qualification to work in that province or territory in a specific skilled trade, and what you have to do to get one.
- British Columbia
- New Brunswick
- Newfoundland and Labrador
- Northwest Territories
- Nova Scotia
- Prince Edward Island
If you work in a skilled trade and want to live in Canada permanently, use our FREE ASSESSMENT tool to see if you are eligible for the Express Entry pool.