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In Dilemma of Moving and Starting all over again

Hello all

I am in a dilemma wether I should start my process for Canada PR.

I am currently in US on H1b , did master’s in US
Working in a Fortune 500 company full time
My and My Wife( NO EAD ) Indian passport holder, Son US passport holder

I still have 6 years on my H1b
No GC process started yet.

One day a thought crossed my mind when me and my wife were discussion options for her to start working.

We thought of trying to get Canadian PR since both of us can work and piece of mind.

I dont want to leave my current job and move to canada to start everyting from scratch. I was thinking if we get the pR than my wife can move there first and get a job and I move in after I get a job there or get remote work from my current job( if my stars are in the right place :slight_smile: )

Is this something that you guys have thought of or have done/

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You aren’t alone in this my friend. Most of us have had the same dilemma and everyone’s situation is different, you need to objectively look over your situation and your future plans.
I won’t go over the benefits of a Canadian PR over a non-immigrant H1B status, there is enough content on this forum as well as the web to help understand.

Here is a quick summary of my case and hope it helps you to decide:
I have almost 15 years of experience, 5 in India, 3 years in UK, 7 in USA. Apart from the benefits of working in different geographies, it has given a good understanding of global businesses.
Being pretty settled in the US (I140/PD from 2013), I was living in a life full of comfort, probably too comfortable, good money, good social circle, etc etc.

However, every time I had to travel outside the country, the thought of standing in a different line at immigration counter ( never had a visa rejection, never asked for I797 at the counter , still … ) angered me, and the potential question that my kid may have asked when she grows up " Dad, why are we called aliens ? "

I decided to explore Canadian PR in Aug 2018, and moved to Canada in June 2019. There were no second thoughts in my mind.

Your situation may be entirely different, you are still in the early phases of your career, and you are the best judge of your personal situation.

We can only provide the perspective, you need to take the call. All those options (wife moving here, or getting a remote job) are potential paths you can take to explore .
< rant > I just hate being called an alien. < / rant >

11 Likes

Thanks for sharing your thoughts @usa2can.

Only reason for 2nd thought is the uncertainty here. But at the same time, i really dont want to resign and move to canada and start it all over again. Its just going to eat up my savings if I take that move.

How was your experience? did you move after getting a job? or took the plunge and than dealt with it.

Please do not quit your job and land here. Especially if you have a family to provide for. Work on your application for the time-being. While its being processed, make plans to move here - which will include deciding on a suitable city for you to live and work in, school choices for your kid, networking & expanding social/professional circles, etc. With a bit of planning you can have a smooth transition and enjoy the benefits of life in Canada. This will happen over a few months so you’ll need to think in advance.

Bottomline - Do do plan to come here one fine day and start from scratch. You don’t have to.

For me personally I was tired of the uncertainty and felt my career had stalled. I made the jump after exhausting my options in the US (had PR application processed and the COPR ready) so it really wasn’t much of a choice for me. I did work things out with my employer and they were happy with me working from Canada.

Life here is not much different than the US, depending on where you live. Some things cost more, some things cost less. If you look at tech jobs you’ll find plenty in big cities (although there’s no comparison with the US).

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I’d definitely suggest not to quit and move, but keep applying for jobs in Canada while continuing to stay here. Moving without jobs will totally drain resources, since no one can say how long it’ll take.

I am also in similar situation. Both me and my wife have H1Bs working full time. GC priority date in 2016, and have COPR for Canada. Tough to make a decision about moving. We had made up our minds to move while the wait time for EB2 was crazy. HR1044 has added to the confusion of what to do next (assuming there is a good chance that’ll happen).

Also, like usa2can, I also hate being an alien/outsider, especially thinking about waiting outside chennai consulate every time for the next decade or 2.

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Thanks for your response.
How is your job search going?

As others have recommended, it is suggested to not move here without securing a good job.
It also depends on what field you work on, some employers want you to be here , some are ok with applying from USA. Most people I know have been able to secure jobs while in the US. Movnorth also provides a platform so try exploring it. Best way out would be to try talking to your current employer to relocate once PR is confirmed.
I got a job before my PR was approved, but moved here only after getting CoPR and securing a house to live and school for kids.

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We might have a movsouth forum pretty soon if that happens in sep’19. Lots of people might need to know how to handle Canadian PR and Current Priority date simultaneously.

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Just started applying this month, applying through LinkedIn and Movnorth. Since we haven’t decided on whether we would move for sure, not taking it as seriously as I should.
Spent the last 6 months researching pros and cons of moving. Listing it out if anyone is interested.

Pros:

  1. Everything you get from being on PR and not on H1B (peace of mind, no renewals/stamping, no dependency on employer, can look into secondary sources of income, getting laid off won’t be as stressful etc)
  2. Lifestyle is very similar to US (Infrastructure, utilities, getting stuff done in general) - I am assuming this, haven’t ever visited Canada.
  3. Parents can stay longer than 6 months ( 2 yrs on supervisa, path to PR)
  4. Healthcare, cheaper education, lower crime rate etc.
  5. Can always move back to US if needed (TN visa once you get citizenship)

Cons:

  1. Lower salaries and lesser opportunities compared to US - My biggest concern so far
  2. Cold - This should be okay depending on location.
  3. Higher housing cost to salary ratio. Almost impossible to buy homes in Vancouver/Toronto

In your case I guess it makes more sense to move since the other option is to apply for H4-EAD, which is also in a bit of uncertainty.

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You have some very good responses. The only thing I’ll add is that you can always make the decision to move or not later. The PR application process is taking a long time these days due to lots of applications.

I made the mistake of not applying because I wasn’t sure if I wanted to move to Canada. After I applied and started looking into Canada, it has now become my first choice even if I get my US green card. So, now I’m regretting not applying sooner. I wish I had applied last year so I could have already moved to Canada. Now, i’m sitting here in limbo waiting for approval.

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This is a great point. Keep telling this to my friend who is still on the fence. Hope things work out for you soon.

What’s the timeline looking like these days?

Hey ipcwit

Congratulations on taking the first step :slight_smile:

My GC process didn’t start before 6 years of H1b was over and I wasted about 2 years being in a similar dilemma

I had similar thoughts too (I’ll get a remote job in US, then apply for PR, move to canada, then wife will apply for PR and then she’ll move, stay out of US for a year, apply for h1 lottery again etc etc).

Fortunately after some time, we didn’t see any point in continuing to stay in the US and started the Canada PR process.

Though initially our plan was to go to Canada temporarily and move back to the US, now we have decided that it’s going to be for good. Having lived more than 10 years in the northeast US, cold wasn’t/isn’t an issue for us.

Though the reasons have shifted or changed a bit since the time we decided to start the PR process, here’s what we find are the pros and cons of moving to Canada with PR:

PROS

  1. Freedom to work anywhere / anytime / with any employer (thanks to the PR, I have my own corp in Canada and I’m contracting with a US company already).
  2. Freedom to not work and stay at home (I have seen quite a few of my friends or their wives wishing this was an option)
  3. No worries about healthcare of one or both members of the household are jobless. Funnily, I’m coming across healthcare debt horror stories in the US, after getting Canada PR, which already makes me glad about that aspect.
  4. Lower salaries was certainly a concern, but having met a few of the MovNorth members in Toronto, it was reassuring to see that US experience has more weightage (but you still cannot convert your current USD salary in CAD).
  5. Just having other sources of income (heck, drive for an Uber just for fun, AirBnB, or a small business you want to try) is possible. So any itch to be an entrepreneur can be scratched without having any restrictions of a temp work visa
  6. Taxes: IIRC, this is the quite a misunderstood part of the comparisons. In Canada, you are taxed individually, i.e., in the US Married Filing Jointly couple, earning $100K per head, will pay taxes based on tax brackets for $200K. In canada, there’s no MFJ concept. So both will be in the $100K bracket.
    • The payroll taxes we pay (Social Security and Medicare) are technically money down the drain if we don’t stay in US (this cost is almost never added in the comparison of taxes)
    • If you factor in HSA contributions, monthly premiums, include yearly out of pocket maximums, deductibles and copays, (which can be like 2%-5% depending on combined annual take home)
  7. As @usa2can mentioned, I cannot stand the word alien though we were so used to it since landing in the US. Feels good to be a permanent resident human :slight_smile:

CONS

  1. Appears to have a lower salary (net savings may be lower compared to the US, if assuming both are having good full time jobs), but it’s hard to genuinely evaluate pay between two countries with different currencies, taxation, healthcare and cost of living.
  2. Everything (flight tickets, cell phone plans, car insurance, fuel, homes etc) is more expensive due to higher sales taxes and/or due to growing demand.
  3. Losing my professional and personal network of friends and colleagues. This I think I overthought before starting the PR process. In our case, we already know more people in Ontario than in NJ. and may not be that much of an issue after moving there.
  4. More months of cold weather

Most of the Cons I have listed are not truly deal braking for us. It probably may be for many others.

What’s ideal to do now:
If you want to take some time to decide whether to go fo it or not, remember that clock is ticking in terms of age (and related points) for the primary applicant and spouse. To keep the total time required to get PR, if you decide to go for it:

  • Get the academic credentials evaluated for you and your wife (this easily takes 2-3 months of time, and if you don’t have the necessary docs, then much longer) because the evaluation is valid for 5 years.
  • Get IELTS/CELPIP for both of you, this is valid for 2 years. (this will save a month or two or more in the PR processing timeline based on how many attempts are needed for a good enough score).

The reason to get these two done is, once you have these, you can apply for Express Entry at any moment.

We decided to start the Express Entry process in November 2017, got CoPR in September 2018, and landed in Canada in November 2018. If we had our IELTS and WES docs ready earlier, that’d have cut the total duration by 3 months.

Hope all this info helps in making a decision. :+1:

10 Likes

I strongly recommend @usa2can suggestions

You mentioned that you have 6 years left on your H1B, so I am assuming you have been in the US for about 3 years or so. If that is right, you won’t be resetting your life too much in terms of starting from scratch in Canada. It’s 3 years only, compared to the move you made from India where you lived for decades and starting from scratch in the US.

Apart from that, if you would like to work for your current employer for a little longer, you can still pursue that and do the PR process at the same time. You will still have a few years to work in the US before you move to Canada.

If you would find it difficult to live without something you have in the US like warm/hot weather or friends or anything else, then you probably should think deeply about it before commiting to the move.

2 Likes

UPDATE:

Took the plunge-

Education document Sent to WES - 2 Weeks Ago

Wife Took IELTS - got 7.5
I took my IELTS - Last Week
Got Experience letter from current employer - Its E-Signed by the HR, do I need my manager’s physical signature?

QUESTION
What else can i get done simultaneously?
I assume i cant create the Profile yet as i dont have my score?

FBI Background check if you are in the US.
That took a long time for me to come through.

@panditji do i need to get the FBI BG check for my wife too?

If your wife has stayed in the USA for more than six months, then yes you have to get that done.

1 Like

Here’s what you can do

Check your score:
you can always check your score without applying.
Check the CRS score here
Check theFSW score here (not sure if there’s a CIC url for this)

If your scores look good, then do the following
Create your profile:
You can create your express entry profile, so go ahead with it. You have up to 1 year to complete it. It takes time to fill it out. So better to have that ready, and wait for your IELTS (which you get after 2 weeks of giving IELTS I think) and WES reference numbers.

Experience letter: As long as the letter fits the requirements (mentions the responsibilities of the NOC, salary, hours per week etc) it should be fine. (To be on the safer side, you can include the email conversation in additional supporting docs). Just make sure you have are selecting the appropriate NOC and responsibilities. They can always contact your employer to verify.

PCC:

  • US PCC
  • Other Countries’ PCC (if you stayed that country for more than 6 months in last 10 years)
    • Indian Embassy/Consulate in the nearest city can give you the PCC in the same day
    • I’m not sure of process for other PCCs

If your CRS score is higher than the last few rounds, then you can get the PCCs immediately. If not, then get your scores in place, and you can do the rest once you get an invite to apply.

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UPDATE

Got my IELTS SCORE ,- Overall 8.0

CRS Score Calculator is showing me 428 score for Express Entry

Thought? Is it good enough to get an Invite?