Nova Scotia provides skilled individuals the chance to acquire a job and reside permanently in the province via the Nova Scotia Nominee Program (NSNP).

The program is an expedited method of gaining entry into Canada, and is for applicants who have the right qualifications as skilled workers or seasoned businessmen planning to settle in Nova Scotia and live there for good.


Applying for Canadian immigrant status to Canada through the NSNP goes by two steps, beginning with an application for an NSNP nomination provincial Office of Immigration, followed by an application for Permanent Resident visa with the Citizenship and Immigration Canada or CIC.

Applying for Nova Scotia Provincial Government Nomination

As soon as an individual ensures he is qualified under a specific stream, he must begin accomplishing all necessary application forms and preparing documents to support information entered on the forms.

The application package may then be forwarded to the provincial Office of Immigration for evaluation where, if successful, the applicant receives a Letter of Nomination from NSNP.

Applying for Permanent Resident Status with the CIC

Upon receipt of a Certificate of Nomination, the applicant proceeds to lodging his Permanent Resident visa application with the CIC within three months of receiving such certificate.

As part of the process, the Federal immigration office will be conducting health, security and criminal checks on the applicant, and may request for additional documentation or an interview.

While the NSNP issues the nomination, the decision on whether or not the applicant will be given a Permanent Resident status rests in whole on the CIC.


Applications for a Nova Scotia nomination are divided into four streams, namely, Skilled Worker, Family Business Worker, Community-Identified, Economy and International Student.

Skilled Workers

The Skilled Workers stream of the Nova Scotia PNP is designed to help companies and organizations in Nova Scotia find employees who can work in positions where there are not enough qualified candidates onshore.

The nominee program is actually very helpful to these Nova Scotia employers who have tried but failed at filling certain positions due to a provincial labor shortage.


To qualify for the Skilled Worker stream of the NSNP, an applicant should:

• Have an offer for a full-time and permanent job from an Nova Scotia employer who is established enough to retain the foreign worker;

• Have a minimum of two years working in a position related to the offered Nova Scotia job;

• Receive a salary and benefits that meet provincial labor standards, where applicants offered a yearly minimum wage of CAD $20,000 are given priority;

• Not negatively influence existing bargaining unit agreements or the settlement of labor disputes;

• Be of the right age and of legal status in his or her country of residence;

• Be educated and experienced in a field that is in line with the offered position;

• Have good language skills and the ability to integrate successfully into the Nova Scotia community;

• Have sufficient financial resources to cover immigration fees and day-to-day expenses upon arriving in Canada; and

• Commit to living in Nova Scotia permanently.

Family Business Workers

The Nova Scotia PNP Family Business Worker stream assists Nova Scotia companies and organizations in the recruitment of their own relatives for positions they may have difficulty filling with Canadian citizens or permanent residents.


Eligible for a Nova Scotia PNP nomination under the Family Business stream is an applicant who:

• Has received a formal offer of full-time, permanent employment by a financially stable Nova Scotia company that is owned by a relative, where:

• The foreign worker will be given a salary and benefits package that meet provincial employment standards (applicants offered an annual wage exceeding CDN $20,000 will be prioritized;) and

• The hiring of the foreign worker will not result in contravening existing bargaining unit agreements or the settlement of labor disputes;

• Is qualified for the offered job based on educational and training background and skills, as well as employment experience and compliance with licensing, accreditation or regulatory standards that apply to certain occupations;

• Is of legal status in the country where applicant is currently residing;

• Plans to reside for good in Nova Scotia;

• Has a good support system to help him or her settle in Nova Scotia;

Community Identified

This Nova Scotia stream is for people who maintain strong ties with a provincial community, and can prove they they are fit for jobs where there is a shortage of qualified Canadian citizen or permanent resident candidates.

Under this stream, applicants must also establish that they have the capacity to become an economically productive addition to the Nova Society community they identify with.


Eligibility under this NSNP stream requires that the applicant:

• Has a Letter of Identification written by a mandated Nova Scotian community organization recognized by the provincial immigration office;

• Is ineligible under any other stream of the Nova Scotia PNP;

• Is of legal status in the country where he or she presently resides;

• Plans to live permanently in the Nova Scotia community that issued the Letter of Identification;

• Has the right education, training and experience to render him or her capable of securing a job in the future in a field determined by that community; and

• Is of the right age and level of language proficiency.

Economic Stream

The Economic Stream is to be replaced by the Entrepreneur Entrepreneur Stream that is equivalent to the Business stream of many other PNP’s.

Nova Scotia is presently not processing applications for the Economic stream until the transition has been completed.

The NSNP Economic stream provides business-inclined professionals and entrepreneurs to set up an enterprise or work with a company based in Nova Scotia for six months.

This is a way to orient them into how people do business in Nova Scotia, and also to allow them to discover opportunities in the province where their skills and expertise might be of use beyond their six-month contract.


There are various requirements for applying under the Economic stream of NSNP, where the applicant must:

• Be between 25 and 60 years old;

• Have reasonable French or English skills for employability;

• Have finished at least grade 12 or equivalent;

• Have managed and/or owned a business for a minimum of two years over the last five years;

• Has a minimum personal net worth of CAD $300,000;

• Intend to live permanently and demonstrate ability to achieve economic stability in Nova Scotia;

• Pay a total of CAD $130,000 in NSNP Economic category fees (effective since May 9, 2006), where:

• • • CAD $130,000 covers filing and administration costs;

• • • CAD $100,000 goes into the middle management employment and business-mentoring contract provided by NSNP to all Economic stream applicants; and

• • • CAD $1,200 makes for the non-refundable application fee.

As soon as the Nominee has obtained a visa and arrived in Nova Scotia, he will be given the chance to choose from among NSNP-approved companies, a middle management work experience contract which runs for a minimum of half a year for a combined pay of $20,000 at minimum.

It is important for the Nominee to secure such a contract within a year’s time from arrival in Nova Scotia, or the right to a business mentorship provided by the program through an approved company is automatically waived.

International Graduate

The Nova Scotia PNP has reserved this stream for international graduates who have strong associations with Nova Scotia, and plan to reside, work and build their careers in this Canadian province.

The stream provides Nova Scotia employers a way to recruit and provide long-term employment opportunities to these international students, who may be fit for positions where there is a shortage of qualified candidates among Canadian citizens and permanent residents.


To be eligible, the International Graduate stream of the NSNP requires that the applicant:

• Has received a formal offer of full-time, permanent employment from an employer in Nova Scotia (with priority given to applications where employers show a willingness to help international students settle in the province) offering a position that:

• • • Is related to the applicant’s field of study;

• • • Has been occupied by the person for a minimum of three months at the time of NSNP application;

• • • Meets the Program’s standards in terms of the nature of the offered job and whether it requires relatively high levels of education and skills;

• • • Will not negatively influence existing bargaining unit agreements or labor disputes; and

• • • Is paid through a salary and benefits package that match provincial labor standards and wages, and is adequate for retaining the employee in Nova Scotia;

(NSNP gives priority to applicants who are offered an annual wage above CND $20,000)

• Possesses the required education, training, skills, accreditation or license for the offered position;

• Be of the right age and meet language ability requirements under this stream;

• Files the NSNP application within two years from finishing a program (that runs for a minimum of one academic year) where the applicant received a certificate, diploma or degree from a recognized Nova Scotia college or university; and

• Obtains a temporary work permit from CIC.

Nova Scotia Immigration Website: