The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program

Always forward thinking, the province of Ontario takes a practical approach to immigration. The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program  (OINP) offers various streams aimed at connecting skilled workers and professionals, as well as international students with careers in their fields in the Greater Toronto Area. This symbiotic program helps boost the local and national economy while providing prospective newcomers with the opportunity to live, work, and play in the province!

If you are a professional who is thinking about relocating to Ontario, getting permanent resident status though the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program may be a great option for you!  Here’s some helpful information.


The nomination process:

First off, it’s important to understand that, usually, individuals who are accepted into the Ontario Immigrant Nominee program get pre-approval from their employers. That means is you want to be part of the Foreign Worker stream and International Students with a Job Offer stream you’ll need to already have a full-time job offer from a professional, skilled trade or managerial occupation.  

In step one an employer kicks things off by submitting the pre-screen application to the Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade. Once the employer receives an approval for the positions, he/she can begin to recruit workers (like you!) to take the jobs. Once you get the job, the employer will give you the approval letter, Joint Verification form, and Pre-screen Position form that he/she received from Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program office. Next, it’s your turn, as the nominee to fill out the nominee application form and submit it.

If you’re an international Masters of PhD graduate, you’re in luck! You don’t need to be nominated through an employer, and can apply directly with OINP!

If you are approved, congratulations! Successful nominees receive a Confirmation of Nomination document. The next step is applying to get permanent residence status with Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). You’ll need to meet all the requirements for a Work Permit as well.


There are some processing fees involved with applying to the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program:

In the employer/job offer category it costs: 

  • $0.00 for the Employer Pre-Screen application
  • $2,000 for Foreign Worker inside the Greater Toronto Area and $1500 for the Foreign Worker outside the Greater Toronto Area.
  • $1,500 for International Students with a job offer.

In the human capital category it costs: 

  • $1,500 for Masters Graduates
  • $1,500 for PhD Graduates
  • $1,500 for Human Capital Priorities, and
  • $1,500 for French-Speaking Skilled Workers


Other important information and tips:

  • Make sure your application is complete and accurate! Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program Application will not be considered if it is incomplete or unreadable, if you do not present all the required supporting papers and documents, if it is not translated into French or English by a certified, notarized translator, and/or is it is missing the application fee.
  • If you receive a provincial nomination, you still may be denied entry by the federal government. Nomination is not a guarantee, but it’s a great place to start.
  • If you are accepted into the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program, and approved by the Canadian government, your family (spouse, and in most cases children) will be able to join you in the wonderful country of Canada, provided they pass medical and security checks.
  • The program is open to those who have (or are seeking) a job in the Greater Toronto Area, which includes the City of Toronto, Durham, Halton, York and Peel.

This is just the beginning of the important information you should familiarize yourself with, if you’re thinking of relocating to Canada through the Ontario Immigrant Nomination Program. For a full list of questions and answers, click here.


Want to learn more? Sign up for! Read The Guide’s “Visas & Immigration” chapter for more on this topic.

Read more great posts about Ontario:


(Photos: Steve Wilson via Flickr, reynermedia via Flickr)


About Peter

As the child of a diplomat, I’ve had the opportunity to really see the world. Living in Algeria, Italy, Venezuela, South Korea, Ukraine and the Bahamas has taught me that diversity is a gift, not something to fear. When it comes to diversity, Canada is a special place. Its big cities attract high percentages of immigrants from every corner of the globe, and natives are welcoming and kind to them. Racial, gender and other forms of diversity are also largely accepted and even celebrated. Relocating is never easy. The stress of moving, and starting over when it comes to finding friend, can be discouraging. But I can tell you from experience that once you get through the tough parts, Canada is a fabulous place to live. // En tant qu’enfant de diplomate, j’ai eu l’occasion de vraiment voir le monde. Vivre en Algérie, en Italie, au Vénézuela, en Corée du Sud, en Ukraine et aux Bahamas m’a appris que la diversité était un cadeau et non quelque chose à craindre. Et quand il s’agit de diversité, le Canada est un endroit spécial. Les grandes villes attirent un pourcentage élevé d’immigrants provenant des quatre coins du monde. Les natifs sont accueillants et gentils envers eux, la race, le sexe et d’autres formes de diversité sont acceptés et même célébrés. La relocalisation n’est jamais facile. Le stress du déménagement et la nécessité de repartir de zéro quand il s’agit de se faire des amis peuvent être décourageants. Mais je peux vous dire par expérience qu’une fois les moments difficiles traversés, le Canada est un pays fabuleux pour y vivre.