What is RNIP?
The West Kootenay Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) makes it easier for employers to hire skilled foreign workers.
Candidates for the West Kootenay RNIP must be planning to work and live long term in the West Kootenay region and meet federal and community specific criteria.
Central Kootenay Regional District:
Creston, Yahk, East Shore of Kootenay Lake, Kaslo, North Kootenay Lake, Ainsworth, Balfour, Nelson, Ymir, Salmo, Castlegar, Slocan Valley, Silverton, New Denver, Nakusp, Burton, Fauquier, Edgewood and surrounding areas.
[Most of] Kootenay Boundary Regional District:
Fruitvale, Trail, Warfield, Rossland, Christina Lake, Grand Forks, Greenwood, Midway, and Rock Creek and surrounding areas.
Who can I hire through the West Kootenay RNIP?
Hire a visitor, student, or worker who is currently employed by a West Kootenay employer
Hire an international student who completed their studies in the West Kootenays in the last 16 months
Hire a person living overseas or elsewhere in Canada
How to hire with RNIP
As an employer, there are five steps to hiring a skilled foreign worker through the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot.
Note: the pilot does not facilitate hiring, it is up to the West Kootenay employers to find candidates.
Ensure you meet the Employer Eligibility requirements and the candidate meets all Federal Eligibility requirements and the West Kootenay Community Criteria.
The job you are hiring for must be a full-time (30 hours per week), non-seasonal, permanent job. Learn more about job offer requirements.
Fill out the Offer of Employment Form (IMM5984) and the Employer Declaration Form. The candidate will then email these forms to the RNIP Coordinator.
The candidate submits their application to the RNIP committee for review. If approved, the candidate will receive a Community Recommendation to apply for Permanent Residency.
WORK PERMIT (if applicable)
If the candidate needs a work permit or their work permit will expire soon, the employer submits a job offer in the Employer Portal so the candidate can apply for a one-year employer-specific work permit.
West Kootenay Priority NOC Jobs
Priority jobs (also referred to as NOCs) are jobs that are in demand in the West Kootenay region.
Applying to the Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot with one of the West Kootenay Priority NOC jobs means the candidate does not have to score 26 points on the West Kootenay Community Criteria form.
RNIP Committee reviews application
The RNIP application is presented at the monthly Community Recommendation Meeting. Note: application are presented to the committee in the order that they are received, i.e. first in, first out.
Results from Community Recommendation Meeting emailed to candidates
After the application is reviewed at the Community Recommendation Meeting, the candidate will be sent an email notifying them if they did or did not receive a community recommendation to apply for Canadian Permanent Residency.
Community Recommendation for Permanent Residency
If the candidate is successful, then they will be eligible to apply for Permanent Residency with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.
If needed, the candidate can also apply for a one-year work permit specific to the employer while their permanent residency application is being processed. (Only necessary if they do not have a work permit or their existing work permit is about to expire).
How to apply for the one-year RNIP work permit
While the application for permanent residency is being processed, candidates can apply for a one-year work permit specific to the employer who provided the Offer of Employment (IMM5984).
To do this: the employer submits an “offer of employment” in the Employer Portal. Then the employer provides the applicant with the seven-digit number (starting with the letter “A”), so they can complete the online application for the work permit.
Employers: Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use RNIP for a person that already works for me?
Yes, you can use RNIP for current employees, as long as they meet the following eligibility requirements:
- The job meets all of the job offer requirements
- The employee meets all Federal Eligibility
- The employee scores at least 26 points on the West Kootenay Community Criteria form or the job offer is for a West Kootenay priority NOC
- You as the employer meet all of the Employer Eligibility requirements
How do I hire someone from overseas?
Follow your usual approach to hiring (though you may have to conduct interviews virtually/ by phone). Once you have settled on the person you want to hire, begin the RNIP process:
- Ensure the following eligibility requirements:
- The candidate meets all Federal Eligibility
- The candidate scores at least 26 points on the West Kootenay Community Criteria form or the job offer is for a West Kootenay priority NOC (in which case they don’t need 26 points)
- The candidate will be able to show proof of settlement funds
- The job meets all of the job offer requirements
- You, as the employer, meet all Employer Eligibility requirements.
- Complete the Offer of Employment Form (IMM5984) and Employer Declaration Form and give to the candidate to submit by email to the West Kootenay RNIP Coordinator.
- Once the candidate has their documents, they will submit their application. The application is then reviewed at a Community Recommendation Meeting (this may take one to three months depending on demand).
- If the candidate is approved for a Community Recommendation, they can immediately apply for Canadian Permanent Residency and a one-year employer-specific work permit.
- For the work permit: as the employer, you must submit an “offer of employment” in the Employer Portal and provide the candidate with the seven-digit number (starting with the letter “A”), so they can complete their portion of the online work permit application.
- Share the RNIP Settlement document with the candidate to help them prepare for their move to the West Kootenays.
Can I hire an international student?
Yes, you can hire international students, as long as the following eligibility requirements are met:
- The international student has a valid work permit
- The international student meets all Federal Eligibility
- The international student scores at least 26 points on the West Kootenay Community Criteria form or the job offer is for a West Kootenay priority NOC
- You meet all of the Employer Eligibility requirements
What wage am I required to pay?
The wage in the Job Offer Form (IMM5984) must meet or exceed $22.00 per hour. However, if the person you are hiring has worked and/or lived in the West Kootenay region for the last six month, then wages can be $18.00 and up.
The wage must also meet or exceed the Job Bank’s minimum wage for your job offer’s National Occupational Classification (NOC).
The West Kootenay Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot is not affiliated with any Immigration Representative, nor do we give preferential treatment to applicants who have hired an Immigration Representative.
If candidates choose to have their paperwork completed by an Immigration Representative, we suggest they read IRCC’s guidelines for using an immigration and citizenship representative.
Candidates may use a representative to act on their behalf or to assist them with finding a qualifying job offer, completing their RNIP application for recommendation, and/or completing their Permanent Resident application.
There are different types of representatives: paid and unpaid and authorized and unauthorized. The Community will not communicate with, or allow for, unauthorized representatives to assist with RNIP application. If an applicant uses an unauthorized representative, in Canada or abroad, we may return your application or refuse it.
Immigration Representatives are authorized if they are:
- Lawyers and paralegals who are members in good standing of a Canadian provincial or territorial law society
- Notaries who are members in good standing of the Chambre des notaires du Québec, and
- Citizenship or immigration consultants who are members in good standing of the College of Immigration and Citizenship Consultants
Please note: using an Immigration Representative does not change how the application will be reviewed or whether it will be approved or rejected. All applications are handled the same. Immigration Representatives cannot and should not guarantee Community Recommendation, Permanent Residence, or a more expedient processing of an application.
I have questions about the pilot, is there someone I can talk to?
The West Kootenay Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot Coordinator is available to West Kootenay employers who have questions about the pilot.
What else do I need to know?
Applications WILL NOT be considered if the following documents are incomplete and do not meet minimum qualifications:
- A job offer from a West Kootenay Employer
- English or French language credentials
- Educational credential requirements
Fraud and Misrepresentation
Fraud and misrepresentation are taken very seriously by the Community and by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. Any business and/or individuals found to be misrepresenting themselves or committing fraud will be banned from applying for recommendation for the duration of the pilot, along with any associated parties.
Misrepresentation and fraud can take many forms including but not limited to:
- Submission of fraudulent documents
- Accepting or offering money for a job offer
- Intentionally misleading the Community
RNIP Decision Making
It is important to note the following:
- All decisions made by the Community are final and are not subject to appeal.
- Receiving a recommendation from the Community does not guarantee permanent residence. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has sole authority to approve or refuse all applications for permanent residency.