What is the change? Canada has conducted its 19th Express Entry draw of 2016, issuing 1,000 invitations to apply – significantly more than in recent draws. The lowest qualifying score was 491.

What does the change mean? The number of invitations was up significantly after hovering between 747 and 799 for the last four months. The minimum score dropped back down after hitting a high of 538 in the Aug. 24 draw.

  • Implementation time frame: Ongoing.
  • Visas/permits affected: Permanent residency through Express Entry.
  • Who is affected: Canadian companies sponsoring foreign nationals through one of four skilled migration programs: Federal Skilled Worker, Federal Skilled Trades, Canadian Experience Class and a portion of the Provincial Nominee Program.
  • Business impact: The minimum qualifying score has remained under 600 in all draws this year, indicating that some candidates continue to be issued invitations to apply without having an LMIA-supported job offer or provincial nomination.

Background: Last year, Canada issued 31,063 invitations to apply through Express Entry. Officials had projected a greater number for 2016, but have issued just 19,292 so far this year.

Express Entry Draws in 2016:

Date Invitations Score Date Invitations Score
Jan. 6 1,463 461 May 18 763 484
Jan. 13 1,518 453 June 1 762 483
Jan. 27 1,468 457 June 15 752 488
Feb. 10 1,505 459 June 29 773 482
Feb. 24 1,484 453 July 13 747 482
March 9 1,013 473 July 27 755 488
March 23 1,014 470 Aug. 10 754 490
April 6 954 470 Aug. 24 750 538
April 20 1,018 468 Sept. 7 1,000 491
May 6 799 534


BAL Analysis: The number of invitations to apply in Wednesday’s draw hit its highest point since April 20, while the minimum score returned to the 490 range after spiking to 538 on Aug. 24. BAL will continue to follow Canada’s Express Entry program to gauge whether the increase in invitations marks the start of a new trend or is an isolated occurrence after Canada issued far fewer invitations in other draws over the past four months.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Canada. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

About Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP
Founded in 1980, Berry Appleman & Leiden (BAL) provides comprehensive global immigration services from six offices across the U.S. and from offices in Geneva, London, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Shanghai, Singapore and Sydney. BAL manages global visa matters and customized application approaches for work permits, business visas, and residence permits in more than 100 countries. With a single cost center for worldwide operations, BAL offers centralized management with regional and local support for the complete spectrum of global immigration matters.


Source: Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP