The Ultimate FAQ Guide for Nurses Who Want to Immigrate to Canada

FAQ Guide for Filipino Nurses

As a previous contributor to this blog and as a leading Canadian Immigration Attorney that specializes in helping nurses like you obtain Canadian Permanent Residence, I get a lot of questions about what it is really like to immigrate to Canada as a nurse.

I am always happy to answer anyone’s questions about Canada’s Immigration system but what concerns me most is that I see a lot of misleading or false statements about immigrating to Canada on message boards and in social media. I want to set the record straight and make sure you have the correct information so you can decide how best to handle your Canadian Immigration plans.

Has the Quebec Skilled Worker (QSW) quota of 20,000 visas, implemented on August 1st, 2013, been filled yet?

I am happy to inform you that the quota has NOT been filled yet so you are still free to apply. The quota is filling quickly however so I strongly recommend anyone who is considering immigrating to Canada get assessed for the QSW program as soon as possible and if you are indeed qualified, you should submit now before it is too late.

How do I apply?

It starts with finding out if you are eligible to apply and you do this by having your credentials assessed. On my website we offer a free online assessment tool but there are other online resources available as well.

As a nurse, do I need hospital experience?

No. Hospital experience is not required. In fact nursing work experience is not a mandatory requirement as long as your nursing diploma was obtained in the last 5 years. So if you have nursing diploma but don’t have any nursing work experience it is still a very good idea to have your credentials assessed as you may be eligible simply based on your nursing qualifications. It should be mentioned that only PAID work experience can be counted for points.

If it has been over 5 years since you graduated from your nursing program then you will need at least 1 year of nursing experience, in the last 5 years, to be eligible to receive the points awarded to nurses.

Can I be a nurse in Canada?

Yes, but most likely you will need to be certified. One option that I suggest to many nurses is that working as a healthcare assistant in Canada will still pay significantly higher than most nursing occupations in your home country. You can work on your certifications part time while still earning a sizable salary, all the while making valuable industry connections that will help you in your future employment in Canada.

That being said as a permanent resident of Canada (equivalent to a US green card) you are free to work in any occupation you like and in live anywhere you choose in Canada.

Do I need IELTS?

Most likely yes but since your nursing diploma awards you the maximum points for your area of training the scores needed for your IELTS are typically fairly low. If you were to score a 5.0 or higher in all 4 categories then your application should be fine.  It has been my experience that a 5 band score is not a difficult score to obtain. Both Academic and General modules of the IELTS are accepted, provided the results were obtained in the last 24 months.

How long does it take?

As a nurse you will receive priority processing which means your application will be processed faster than other types of applications. All-in-all you can expect to wait approximately 14 months from start to finish.

So when making your New Year’s resolution this year why not consider starting the next exciting chapter of your life in Canada. With priority processing for nurses and the possibility of sponsoring your parents and grandparents to Canada with you once you receive your permanent residence status, it has never been a better time to be a Canadian!

Happy holidays to you and your loved ones from all of us at the Canadim Law Firm.


Renaud Dery,

Canadian Immigration Attorney

[email protected]

With 15 years of experience in the Canadian Immigration field we are now leading experts in this program. Become part of our community, and then let us help you become part of the Canadian community!

© 2013, Filipino Nurses. All rights reserved. DISCLAIMER: The accuracy of all articles contained in this website are the responsibility of their respective authors. All articles are for informational purposes only and are NOT intended to replace the advice of a doctor. The owner of this site disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on these information. If you have any health-related questions, please consult your physician. If you feel ill, please seek medical attention immediately.

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With 15 years of experience in the Canadian Immigration field we are now leading experts in this program. Please visit our website to take our free online assessment and check us out our Facebook page to keep updated and find out about our next immigration seminars abroad as well as to see pictures and the stories of our many successful clients. Become part of our community, and then let us help you become part of the Canadian community!
  • maureen malpal

    I realy want to aply as nurse in canada.nw, my recent job is factory worker in taiwan b-coz i wan to find a way to aply in canada..but i found out that i need to prepare large amount of money to aply. Is it posible that can i aply in canada without paying expensive fee?

  • paula

    How can I apply for a work permit to work in Canada? Do I have to have a job before applying for a work permit? If so, then where can I find a job?

    • Candice Polistico

      hi paula.. To apply for a work permit you just need to fill out the application either online or in person on the Government of Canada’s citizenship and immigration Canada website: www cic You do, however, have to have a job offer in advance unless you fall into one of the very few and narrow exceptions. To find a job you need to find a company with a positive labour market impact assessment. Only L MIA companies can hire international workers. To find jobs look at sites like workopololis com, monster, jobsaloon com, and kijiji com.^_^