Steps before submitting EE profile and Pre-ITA phase


I written my IELTS on Sept 9th and submitted educational documents to WES, it is under final review phase.

I got my unofficial IELTS results on Friday. I’m not sure when can I create and submit EE profile. Also, what would be the pre-ITA phase steps which I must start.

Here is my profile details:
Education: MS in Computer Science from US
IELTS: L:8.5; W:7.5; R:7.5; S:7.5
Work experience( Software Engineer) : 2.5 years in US and 1.5 years in India

Note: Yet to receive official IELTS score report and WES evaluation report


You can start the application process anytime, earlier the better. You can then go back and fill in the missing details around WES etc. Also you will need a reference number from the Welcome to Canada tool.

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Get your ECAs, police certificates, and reference letters done as soon as you can. For FBI clearance they took 2.5 months (Indian embassy was much quicker, within two weeks).

ECA: I tried working with WES but they’re horrible in my opinion (but they may work for you I don’t know). BCIT was quick (within two weeks with rush and within 5 weeks without rush processing). Univ. of Toronto was slower but still they give status updates and all that.

Reference letters: You either have to get these from your manager/supervisor on an official letterhead, or prove that you took sufficient efforts to obtain one but weren’t able to get one (in which case your paystubs, resignation letters etc might be needed as well).

Make sure you have sufficient funds in your account (check cic for details), and that these are maintained over many months.

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DHello , Anshul,
I am on H1B…
I just joined the forum— ECA for me is in process (WES to send report by 15th Jan), and we have just made the WES payment for my spouse.

Next step:- * IELTS Preparation * for both of us…while she tries getting university papers attested, and Wes is processing my own attested documents in parallel.

However, a few things I was thinking/ concerned about:

1: “Proof of Funds”: is it okay, if I can show my savings are in India in some form of investment (and not in USA)?
All they need is “liquidity”, to be able to live off on- if I understand the requirement correctly? Note: I will not be able to show anything at all for next many months inside of the USA.

2: Police Clearance from USA and India:- (we have lived in both for more than 6 months):
Where do we start now? I am in Chicago suburbs— please suggest, and I will initiate both countries right away. (Hope it’s not “too early”)?
Note: My wife is now in India for a while.

  1. “Reference Letters” you mentioned:- I have “Detailed Experience Letters” from both of my previous Employers, signed by respective HR Authorities/Signatories. Is that sufficient? Also, is there anything needed from my Current Employer in USA?

  2. PNP and EE — I am not sure I understand the whole PR process well enough, but I need your support in removing quite a few cobwebs from my brain…

E.g. Do we focus on “normal” Express Entry”, or look for a Provincial Nomination to increase our chances of landing in Canada?
Second, if we “should” look for the right ‘Province’ - how do you recommend we fe our thinking to get to a decision— weather , job market , income , costs — and applicability for our situation— or something very different?

Thanks, and looking forward to hearing from both of you:slight_smile:


1: “Proof of Funds”: is it okay, if I can show my savings are in India in some form of investment (and not in USA)?

CIC have defined how much money they are expecting based on the size of the family. For a family of 2 it’s $15,312 CAD
Additionally it needs to be “Liquid” like fixed deposits, savings, etc. Even mutual funds, etc will not be acceptable.

2: Police Clearance from USA and India:- (we have lived in both for more than 6 months):

Yes, please start early (I cannot stress this enough) FBI will take long. For India goto the embassy for FBI you need to get fingerprints and then submit.

If you’re wife is in India and if she also requires FBI clearance then there are companies in India that handle FBI fingerprinting

3: Reference letters

You will need a proof of work letter from each of your employer for the years of work you are claiming points for. This work experience has to match your NOC number.

4: PNP and EE

Not a problem happy to be of help :smile: Express Entry is a high level process to get a Canadian PR the way it works is that your application goes into a pool and based on your application you are awarded some points under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). A few times a year they draw applications from this pool based on a cutoff score that they decide on. All applications above that score get invited to complete the process and get PR and all below are left in the pool for the next draw you application can only be in the pool for a year after which you have to reapply.

The reason I said Express Entry is a high level process is because it has 3 sub categories under which applications are filed. Your application would be filed under the Federal Skilled Workers (FSW) sub category. Keep in mind FSW has its own point system (Out of 100) where you have to score over 67 for your application to be valid under FSW. Only if you make those 67+ points then your application is accepted under FSW and it goes into the EE pool.

Provincial Nomination is a way to get extra pointer under EE. This requires a province to nominate you a separate process into itself. Additionally if you then do secure PR and move to Canada then you would be required to spend your first two years in that province. People who go this route can find themselves in some remote province with no job prospects so pick wisely. Getting a nomination is popular provinces like Ontario (Toronto) is pretty hard.

If something is not clear feel free to drop the community a question.


Get everything done that you can do immediately, while you are waiting for IELTS date: ECA, experience letters, police clearances etc. Go through the CIC website and the EE document checklist. You can do Medical exam after you get the ITA. Get the IELTS date quickly; not a ton of preparation is required; it’s like TOEFL but longer and slightly harder (check other questions on this forum regarding IELTS).

The best proof of funds are liquid assets like your bank accounts (checking/saving), fixed deposits in India etc (something that can be liquidated immediately). Based on some forums and some heresay, my understanding is that US 401k etc should also be acceptable, although I’m not sure if this is true or not.
Note that all these accounts should be in your name (or you+your wife joint account is acceptable if both are applying). For e.g., my FDs in India would not work coz they were joint under me and my parents so I couldn’t use them. So I just showed my bank statements and summaries.
Another option is to liquidate non-liquid assets and show those funds, although I’m not sure how this would work or if it’s acceptable (since you are suddenly getting an influx of cash; maybe add it to the letter of explanation (?)).

Get started of FBI clearance asap coz they will take time! (they’re probably already stressed :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes: )
Get the Indian embassy clearance done as well. Usually they’re quick but why wait… (note you will need passport the day of IELTS exam and you’ve to send passport to Indian embassy to get the clearance so don’t let them conflict).

Reference letters should be on company letterhead with all details, e.g. how long you worked, what exactly did you do. E.g. if you’re a software engineer it would be good to list the projects you worked on, the technologies you worked on, your general duties and responsibilities etc. Even if your previous manager has now moved to another company, ask them if they can give it on their current letterhead (my former US manager did so). These things take time as it’s highly dependent on when your manager responds to you so get started on that. I don’t think it’s necessary that the HR person should sign it if the manager’s signature is present. If a company refuses to give you one, get an unofficial letter from manager if you can, and your offer/resignation letters etc, with a letter of explanation and upload (it tells CIC that you tried to get one but failed).

As long as you get enough points and clear the cutoff to get the ITA, that’s all you really need; once you get ITA it’s all about if you have all the supporting documents needed and if you submit that before the deadline. If I’m correct, PNP requires that you live and work in that province already. I would try to get the EE ITA.

(The following information is based on my limited experience in Canada, and I welcome additional information from more experienced people)
Job market: Ontario (Toronto), and BC (Vancouver) are the two places for techies. although there are jobs in other provinces as well. In general jobs are limited in number as the population is low, the industry is not as matured as, say, Bay area, although that’s changing rapidly.
The further up you go, the colder it gets (check google maps and weather channel), although Toronto cold is not significantly different that Detroit cold!
Income, costs etc: From what I’ve seen and heard, salaries are not as high as they are in USA, even in absolute $ number. E.g., someone earning US$120k+ in Bay area might only get CAD$94k+ or something in Toronto; although this can vary a lot based on your profile, the cost of living, the company etc etc etc. Cost of living (especially housing) is high in Toronto just like any big cities in USA, and even higher in Vancouver. There are also lots of benefits in Canada that you don’t get in USA; e.g. universal healthcare, 1 yr maternity leave, no visa required to work, good retirement benefits etc. So there are obviously pros and cons to moving there.


Question regarding the experience letters. I already have these on company letter-head as part of my PERM process, but the date of the letters is not current. Does that matter? Meaning, can I use the same experience letters from PERM for Express Entry? Or will I need a new set of experience letters with a newer date? Thanks.

Get fresh letters if you can, and also use the ones you already have. But based on what I read here, the old reference letters should work. It’s always advisable to club your reference letters, resignation acknowledgement letter, original offer letter, paystubs if you have them etc into one pdf and submit that as one document for that one place you worked for.

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@avj, to get selected to an ITA, do I need the documents ( like proof of funds, work experience letter, etc) or is it just plain fill in an online form and click ‘submit’ for ITA selection? thanks

In order to submit Express Entry profile to get into the pool for ITA, you need to have your IELTS scores and educational evaluation (ECA) available. Once you receive an ITA, then you need the rest of the documents. You get 90 days after receiving ITA to submit the documents.

So, 4.5 months on, addressing both and Anshul and the entire forum here.

First - thank you so much for your advice on this post. It did get me “started” :slight_smile:

FBI PCC received exactly 4 months later after a local police station did the printing --> this clearnace happened even though a fingerprint “expert” had said my prints would be rejected due to spaces between my fingerprint ridges - well that’s how God has made me – but I had other backup plans for PCC / criminal clearances from different states of USA).
Spouse should get FBI in a month or more.

India PCC was given in 3 hours by the local embassy here.
Spouse to do it next month or so.

Note: We do have CRS of 424, and since its not enough for the Federal government at this point, I am considering Ontario PNP (sibling presence and job opportunities in my area of work): HCP stream (Human Capital Priorities).
We are “eligible” with 400+ CRS, but they haven’t pulled anything lower than 433 for a while now, as you might have noticed as well.

Note: IELTS of 8.0,9.0,9.0, 8.5 (L,S,R,W) : Only a 0.5 improvement would have gotten 3 more CRS points, per simulator. while I did not put in more than an hour of preparation (esp. with a couple of “listening” Audios from a book, L is where I failed to get the “highest”) … and, while I was angry with myself for the last few weeks (hence did not post here), I think I have to let go of this – traveling to a far off place (centers are very few in my State of Illinois) --for just 3 extra points on CRS might not be worth it… not at this point at least…

AGE: 34 years and six months for me, the principal EE applicant. So, for the sake of this discussion, please assume I will lose 5 points for any action towards improvement in my Profile - six months from now, and I will lose 10 points , say, 18 months from now.
FYI - The 424 includes my sibling points.

My options (as I understand):

a) French via TEF Canada – what exactly is the score required to “make it” for Ontario HCP ? I understand someone said the minimum “eligibility” criteria of “4” in each of the 4 departments of (i) Written comprehension ®, (ii) Oral comprehension (L), (iii) Written expression (W), (iv) Oral expression (S), but isn’t that just for 5 points under CRS. ? heard someone say “CLB 7” for TEF Canada is required for 30 extra points. How is that possible? Can someone elaborate please, for me - from their won research/ experience/ understanding? Even better if you have appeared for, and cleared the test - good to know from experiences . FYI, I am genuinely confused with the translations from Language calculators to CRS and vice-versa.

Second, TEF could open me up to the French speaking stream - assuming they need more Francophones a year from now . (?)

b) Job offers - not sure of how to approach the Global Talent Stream of 2-week processing. ? Pl let me know if you or your acquaintances have done this in the past - or if you have gotten a job offer from outside of Canada using your own networking and connections in Toronto (or Ontario as a province).

c) Masters Degree / Grad Diploma /Certificate (all Online) - can be a long shot, and the minimum of 12 months needed (per Express Entry drop-down, not even 10 month degree will make sense, like the LSUS Shereveport 10-month high-stress online MBA) + the energy, workload, money, and overall pressure to succeed with a min. 3.0 GPA in every single course assignment, along with a job, family and getting a in every course to get the Degree… might just not make it worth the ‘super-human’ effort (?).

And, secondly, even if I do succeed in getting a 12-month or 18-month Degree or Diploma against all odds – well, who knows, even the CRS needed for either the Federal/ CIC ( -or- well, even Ontario Province) might go “up” by then? Too many unknowns here, correct?

Finally, my energy might not be as “alive” for Canada by then – and too many other “what ifs” too :slight_smile:

d) Finally, spouse IELTS (closer to the minimum needed at 7/7/6/6.5) might increase overall scores (spouse language factor is at 14/20 on CRS), but then that might take a few months due to dates and her own prep.

In a nutshell – Any advice is welcome. Fyi, “B” and “A” are on priority list now. To my mind. :slight_smile:

Best wishes,

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Have you looked at Quebec skilled worker (QSW) track? It’s to Quebec what FSW is to rest of Canada. I have read QSW gives out more ITAs than other provices, atleast for PNP (CSQ in the case of Quebec). Check that. I don’t think French is mandatory for them as they accept IELTS as well.

If your spouse gets her IELTS and ECA done, maybe it’ll improve your score. Does her being principal applicant increase or reduce the overall simulated score (assuming good IELTS score for both)? Also, have you tried not including spouse as “accompanying”? Try this for both you and her as principal applicants and see the simulated score.

c) will take a long time and you have to probably move there, unless online degrees will give you extra points but you lose age points in that case. Long shot indeed.

In any case keep an eye out on future draws as cutoffs can go down any time.

Try the GlobalSkills or any other progs that connect you to Canadian employers. You might just get some interview calls.

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Hi anshul

I have not yet looked at any other Province. Ontario is a TOP PRIORITY, since family and opportunities both reside.

Also, I have sent out both people’s (spouses) Duplicate ECA’s to the Ontario MCIT – right after the IELTS – a basic requirement per Ontario HCP Application Guide.

And, No. French is not “mandatory” for Ontario – it was only for the FEDERAL “CIC” CRS points (extra “30” potentially) , and for the Ontario French-skilled stream that opened recently that I was talking about.

As I said in (d) - Spouse has IELTS (and ECA too) – that’s how we got to 424 , including Sibling being a PR in Canada (15 pts more). “Age” is the factor.

Your point of “Accompaniment”: I am Not even considering Spouse as “not accompanying” to be a possibility – I am doing this all for my Spouse – and I have seen first-hand the treacherous nature of getting someone later on (my own sibling in this case) – this could take at least an additional year, after the principal’s landing - or even after being a Canadian Citizen (my sibling’s spouse was a citizen – the agony for the entire family - was far more than treacherous than any language can describe, trust me). Seriously, Not worth our energy - but am open to researching (in case there’s a pleasant surprise in terms of easier immigration for a person later on) - so THANK YOU, and please forgive all my frustration. This is coming Esp. after I have invested so much money, energy, attention and TIME into the process.

No, her being Principal will not help - she has hardly any work exp (not even the 3 years Cap they have on EE), and second we are planning a retake of IELTS for her, if time and energy permits (she is more than willing - because there is more upside on IELTS for her, than for me… unless I really learn Meditation, for my Mind. .and hence can LISTEN: in the interest of full disclosure, I did meditate after a long time… on the day of the test… Lol… rest i am glad i did not prepare… on my spouse’s behest… she’s more confident of me being the best at everything… than me believing in my self :slight_smile: )

( c ) Online Or Off-line Master-level degrees and Grad Certificates and/ or Diplomas – whether USA or Canada-based (or anywhere-based) – The points Payoff is HUGE… even with a Diploma of 12 months - esp. because of the 25 extra points on Transfer-ability, besides the 7 min. extra points on “Education” . So, the loss on Age is compensated for greatly. But the Energy cost / drainage of mind-body is too high, as I mentioned.

You end up feeling, of course, if you have to invest so much energy - go for the BEST schools… instead of the shitty ones – esp. for a “PR” future that you cannot really REALLY place a “bet” on. No one knows what CIC is gonna do tomorrow – or the Ontario MCIIT will decide on for the various PNP streams.

Yes, correct >Global Talent Streams >> I am waiting on people to respond to points B Job Offer) and A (French/ TEF basics).
Priority for me - to get to Ontario is a J-O-B i can be happy with - since that I will want/ need whichever country I take myself to…

FYI – I did go for a trial class at Alliance Francaise… so again, high scores will take something super-human… not that i have not done good things before – but health, peace of mind and relationships are priority :slight_smile:

Again, Diploma / Cert / Degree or French Up-skilling – either way, Age I will lose 5 - 10 points ( over the next 6 to 18 months ). I am OK with that. But Fed / CIC and MCIIT – who is to say their cutoffs are coming down or going up ?


Check out QSW rather than being rigid about Ontario before you get PR.

Nothing you can do about age, but try any other approach that will increase your points. Best bang for the buck is getting a job offer from (anywhere in) Canada.

Thanks Anshul - let me see what I can do.


Good to read, we are on 423 almost same situation and condition which @spurk has, except any sibling in Canada.
And tomorrow going to loose 5 more points as my wife is turning 32 (and is primary applicant).
Appreciate the suggestions but lets see things go.

@spurk and @curious_abt85: I think the scores had dropped last year to 415 during April-May so it might happen again some time this year.

If your spouse can give the IELTS again, that would be great. If you are in IT, @anon25417004 had mentioned about a while ago so do take a look at their site for job opportunities as they mentioned that they sponsor the GTS work visa.

Doing a Master’s might help but only if you are ready for the superhuman effort which you mentioned. It becomes quite difficult with a full time job.

If you are already well-versed in French, you should try attempting the French test and see if it helps. I have no clue about the scores required so I am sorry I can’t help clear your confusion. If you are planning on starting learning French now, it might be difficult to clear the exam with good scores with just a few months of practice.

Last but not the least, as @avj mentioned, try to be open to PNPs from other provinces. It might require you to live in that province for a certain amount of time after which you can move to Ontario.

Honestly speaking, I don’t know what you are going through but all I can say is don’t lose hope.

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2 posts were split to a new topic: Do I add spouse work experience to EE profile if we’re not claiming those points?

so i have submitted my profile today… and we have sufficient scores to get ITA tomorrow…

but it shows “Express Entry profile effective date May 23, 2018”…
today is May 22 so why does it show May 23… any issue?

It shows the next day because the system processes the profile checks validity etc, so it defaults to the next day being active in the pool. Since your effective date is before the draw time you might be fine.