Landing/Moving to Quebec post-landing

Hi all,

I received a letter saying my PR is ready to be approved pending confirmation of my family composition (no changes since application). We did the EE FSW program (outland).

We had originally put Vancouver as our city of destination, but we’re now wanting to settle in Montreal. I understand I’m not supposed to land in Quebec, but can move there after receiving the PR cards. We’re thinking to land in another province, stay a few months to get PR cards, then travel and settle in Montreal. If we do this, does it matter where we get our SIN numbers? And apply for health insurance? Are there other administrative things to make sure we do outside of Quebec? Or wait and do once there?

Just don’t want to make a mistake and get black listed… or not allowed into Quebec…


You cannot land in Quebec, since QC has it own immigration channel. You should not land with an “intention” of moving to Quebec. But once you are a PR, you can settle anywhere in Canada including QC. It also doesn’t matter much where u get the SIN.
Health insurance in QC has a wait time of 3 months so you can get private insurance during that time or use the insurance of previous province.

Thanks for the quick response. So for health insurance, if we landed in BC and stayed there until we had our PR cards, and let’s say we also apply for BC health insurance, then we move to QC a few months after, do we have to apply the for QC health insurance and wait another three months?

Also, could we theoretically do a soft landing from the US, then go back to US until PR cards come (we could put a friends Canadian address for the cards), and then re enter straight into Quebec once the cards come and friend could mail them? Is this considered totally legal and valid or sneaky?

Thanks for your help.

Yes, for QC, you will be covered by health card(insurance) only after 3 months of arrival in QC. During that time, previous province insurance can be used. Although except for emergency or urgent situation, healthcare in QC is not really that accessible. Wait times in Montreal for getting a family doctor is 4 years+.

For 2nd option, it is legal. I mean it could be that you got a job in QC and you have settle there. As a PR, you are within ur legal rights to do that.

Ok, thanks for your help. We might consider doing a soft landing and then returning to the US until our PR cards come, and then straight to Quebec. If we did that, what should we say at the border? I’ve heard some people have been denied at soft landing and it seems like there are some pretty grey rules about it. Would we have to say we intend to land elsewhere? Would we have to already have an address elsewhere? Then when we go to cross back in after receiving PR cards, should we cross NOT in Quebec or is it ok to cross straight to Quebec?

Thanks for all your help. Much appreciated.

You would be wise to follow the plan of landing in BC and registering there for SIN and BC health. Wait six months then move to Quebec and apply for RAMQ (Quebec health care). Qc will coordinate with BC on health care so that QC coverage will kick in coincident with the BC coverage ending. You should also consider getting a BC driver’s license, depending on which license you currently hold. Once you’re in QC it’s easy to exchage a BC license for a QC licemse, but depending on what your existing license is it can be difficult and annoying to transfer to the QC license. If you let me know what your existing license is I can maybe add more clarity.
All of this is perfectly legal by the way, but don’t advertise the fact that you’re, in effect, doing an end run. Keep it under your hat,

Thanks for the tips. Why do you say to stay 6 months in BC? Could we just stay until we receive PR cards and then head to Quebec once we have cards in hand? Also, could we theoretically go to BC (or maybe Ontario we are also considering), wait for our PR cards, and just keep our private health insurance and not apply for provincial, then move to Quebec and apply straight for RAMQ there. Would this be seen as fishy if we don’t apply for another province’s insurance first?
Re - driver’s licenses. I currently have an Oregon US license and my partner has a French license. Would these be a pain to convert directly to QC licenses?

Thanks for all the insight.

Re the licenses - Quebec requires that you observe the entire studying, testing and road testing procedure in order to transfer a “foreign” driver’s petrmit to a Quebec permit. There are a few exceptions where QC waives all the testing and just allows a transfer. Both Oregon and France qualify as exceptions and the process is quite fast/easy provided you bring an officlail (Government) transcript certifying two years of driving experience. In the case of your partner transferring a French license is particularly easy. Quebec has a number of instances where a French citizen is given preferential treatment.

As for the idea of waiting six months in BC, that’s wise, if practical, becasue establishing yourself in BC (IE: SIN registration, Government health registration, residential domicile, etc.) first, makes the Quebec process much easier. A transfer from another Canadian province to Quebec usually goes smoothly. A transfer from elsewhere to Quebec, not necessarily, It can be particularly troublesome where the Permanent Residency, SIN registration is concerned because there’s a risk of getting tangled up with Quebec’s unfathomable “Quebec Immigration” regulations. It’s much safer/easier to simply transfer from BC after having aready established your bone fides in British Columbia.
I would definately not recommend activating your PR initially in Quebec. Register the PR and SIN in another province first.

Hi there, thanks for all this info. We are finally arriving - my partner is already there in Ottawa. I am arriving in a few weeks. He has lodging for 6 weeks in Ottawa but we are looking to move to Montreal as soon as is legal and feasible (considering next month if we can without breaking any rules). We called the Quebec Ministry of Immigration and Francisation and they said we can move anytime, we just need to make a demand for a certificate of non selection to Quebec. That will allow us to apply for medical, etc. I asked them about our PR cards however (wondering if it’s OK to have them sent to Quebec, or if that poses an issue) and he had no response for me.

My questions for you are: given the response from QC ministry of immigration, do you think it’s OK to move straight there and apply for the certificate on non selection to Quebec? Will IRCC have an issue with this? Should we still establish everything in Ontario (medical, drivers license, SIN, etc)? Will it be an issue if we apply for ON health and by the time it is approved we are not there?

Thanks for any insight and tips you may have.

Hi Meme, It’s my experience that once you have the PR certificate and SIN you are qualified to live/work anywhere in Canada. You don’t need approval from any particular province, we have constitutional labour mobility in Canada. I don’t believe you need a “certificate of non-selection” from Quebec, in fact filing for such a document could create other problems. If it were me, I would take up residence in Ontario and subsequently just move to Montreal and change your driver’s license and health registration after you arrive.
Please note, I am not a qualified immigration attorney. If you are truly concerned about this level of detail contact an immigartaion lawyer.
Also, when you make the move feel free to contact me and if I can offer any relocation pointers as you settle in Montreal I will be happy to do so.
Avoid making this more complex than it needs to be. Good luck