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Foreign law school graduates and lawyers: How to become a lawyer in Canada

Why the IELTS may be required to become a lawyer in Canada.


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All immigrants face mandatory language test

July 20, 2010
Nicholas Keung


Dodi Robbins, a Harvard-educated corporate lawyer whose first language is English, says she is insulted at having to take Immigration Canada’s language test in order to prove she speaks English well enough to settle here. She has been working as a lawyer in Toronto on a work permit since 2006.


Born and raised in New York, Dodi Robbins graduated from Harvard University and has been practising law for 13 years. Continue reading

Feds propose immigrants provide upfront evidence of English, French fluency

OTTAWA— The Canadian Press


The federal government wants immigrants to provide upfront evidence that they’re fluent in one of Canada’s two official languages when they submit citizenship applications.

Ottawa is requesting comments on its proposal to require prospective immigrants to prove they have a Canadian Language Benchmark Level 4, in either English or French.

A notice says the proposed change would not increase the language level required for citizenship but would provide officials and judges with “objective evidence of an applicant’s language ability.” Continue reading

Canada Allows CELPIP Results For Skilled Worker and Professional CategorP

Canada Allows Results  From New CELPIP  Test As  Proof English Language  Skills for the skilled worker  and professional  category. Note that the CELPIP is  not acceptable for all catefories!

You may remember  an old television ad for  Tetly Tea:  “Only in Canada You Say!”

Canada requires  proof of English Language  proficiency to immigrate to Canada. For many years the IELTS has been the only game in town when it comes to establishing proof of English language proficiency for purposes of Canada immigration. That has changed.

The IELTS must now compete with the newly released CELPIP Test. The acronym stands for:

“Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program”

Like  the IELTS there  is both an Academic (used to  study in Canada) and a General Version (used for immigration to Canada). The CELPIP originates  from the University of British Columbia, uses Canadian English (whatever that is), is computer based, and is administered by a an organization called  “Paragon Testing”.

There is presently an opportunity to take a free sample test. Preparation materials  are low cost.

I am intrigued by the fact that the CELPIP tests “Canadian English”. Sounds interesting. This may NOT turn out to be a sound marketing strategy. IELTS and TOEFL are used internationally. Therefore, those who are undergoing English Language testing for academic purposes may be better off taking the IELTS or TOEFL.

The CELPIP is an interesting innovation. It will be interesting to see how it develops.

To learn about the CELPIP visit:



Applying to Canada as an Investor, Entrepreneur or Self-Employed Person

It is possible to apply to Canada as an investor, entrepreneur or self-employed person. In other words, having money increases your chances of coming to Canada.

Immigration Canada describes this category as follows:

“The Immigrant Investor Program seeks experienced business people to invest C$800,000 into Canada’s economy and become permanent residents. Investors must:

  • show that they have business experience
  • have a minimum net worth of C$1,600,000 that was obtained legally and
  • make a C$800,000 investment.

Your investment is managed by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and is guaranteed by the Canadian provinces that use it to create jobs and help their economies grow.

CIC will return your C$800,000 investment, without interest, about five years and two months after payment.”

It is essential that potential immigrants undertake very careful “due diligence” before investing in Canadian businesses in general and certain kinds of franchises  in particular. The franchise terms are often very onerous and franchisees sometimes find themselves working for less than minimum wage.

There have many complaints about franchises in general. As a result, most Canadian provinces have enacted legislation to protect potential franchisees. General information for Canada may be found at:


Information about the Ontario Wishart Act may be found at:


The Wishart Act in Ontario mandates a duty of fair dealing. S. 3 reads as follows:

“Fair dealing

3. (1)  Every franchise agreement imposes on each party a duty of fair dealing in its performance and enforcement.”

A Toronto law firm has compiled a database of legal cases dealing with the Ontario Wishart Act. You might find information about a franchise that you are considering here.

Once again, be very careful before investing in a Franchise. I have seen people’s wealth and health destroyed because of them.

John Richardson – Toronto, Canad

Disclaimer: The information in this post is accurate as of the date of publication and is not legal advice. Laws are subject to change. Make sure that you get up-to-date independent legal advice before making any investment decision.





Ontario gives green light to record number of foreign doctors

May 10, 2011
Louise Brown

staff Reporter


In what Health Minister Deb Matthews is hailing as a “reverse brain drain,” Ontario licensed a record 3,708 doctors last year — 41 per cent of them from other countries.

Ten years ago, 28 per cent of licences went to international grads.

As a result, 94 per cent of Ontarians now have access to their own doctor and a growing number of physicians understand the cultures of their patients, said Matthews. Continue reading

English profs not amused by Canada’s immigration pop quiz

Sara Landreth and her husband, James Brooke-Smith, teach English literature at the University of Ottawa. Both have doctorates in English literature, but Canada's immigration rules require each of them to take a $280 test proving they are fluent in the language.

Sara Landreth and her husband, James Brooke-Smith, teach English literature at the University of Ottawa. Both have doctorates in English literature, but Canada’s immigration rules require each of them to take a $280 test proving they are fluent in the language. Brigitte Bouvier for The Globe and Mail

New rules require a $280 language test, even if you hold a PhD in literature

Joe Friesen


From Thursday’s Globe and Mail Published on Wednesday, Jul. 28, 2010 10:30PM EDT Last updated on Thursday, Jul. 29, 2010 12:24AM EDT

Sara Landreth can only marvel at the absurdity of her situation.

She has a PhD in English literature. She has been hired to teach English literature to Canada’s budding scholars. Yet her application for immigration will not be processed unless she submits to a $280 English language test, thanks to a ministerial instruction signed by Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney last month. Continue reading

Canada – Foreign Trained Professionals and FARPA

Canada – Foreign Trained Professionals and FARPA (“Fair Access To Regulated Professions Act”)

July 26, 2010

John Richardson

Barrister and Solicitor

Toronto, Canada

Admitted to the bars of Ontario, New York and Massachusetts

“It’s a story that replays for thousands of new arrivals each year: a skilled immigrant arrives in Canada with high hopes. He or she is an engineer, a teacher, a lawyer, a financial planner, a business executive, a [insert profession here]. With no luck finding relevant work in Canada, he or she realizes going back to school, retraining and even getting re-licensed may be the first steps necessary before he or she can even dream of getting a job in his or her area of expertise.”

Canadian Immigrant Magazine

When it comes to immigrating to Canada, for foreign trained professionals, there has been both good news and bad news. Continue reading

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Skilled workers and professionals: Who can apply—Selection factors

Language testing


You must provide proof of language proficiency by tak ing a language test from an agency designated by CIC. With your test results, you will be able to see exactly how many points you will receive for the language selection factor. Continue reading