Settlement Funds And Proof Of Funds For Canada Immigration: The Complete Guide
May 10, 2023
Now that you've decided to apply for Canada Permanent Residency (PR), you'll need to tick a number of things off your application package checklist to ensure that you have the best chance of success.
One of the most important elements in this checklist is being able to demonstrate that you can survive in your new country. So what exactly are settlement funds? And what is proof of funds? Let's take a closer look.
What are Settlement Funds For?
As with all major events, money will play a major role in your move to Canada. This money, known as settlement funds, is essential to your permanent residency application. These funds will ensure that you can function comfortably and successfully as you ease into life in the land of the maple leaf.
This is required, according to Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), to make sure that you'll be able to function independently without help from the Canadian government.
With reports of more than a million vacant positions around Canada, the country desperately needs your skills. To be able to play a functional role in society, you'll have to make an economic contribution.
By proving that you're capable of providing for yourself and your dependents. At the same time, you settle in your new home, you'll be able to contribute to the economy when you shop for necessities, rent a property, or pay for transport services.
You have to consider that setting up your new life comes with lots of small costs that add up. There may be a bank or other administrative fees as well. Also, consider that the Canadian currency may be worth more than your home country's. So it may be a shocker when you do the math.
What is Proof of Funds?
Proof of funds is the method through which you demonstrate you have enough money to settle in Canada. After receiving an invitation to apply (ITA), you must give written proof that you have the requisite amount of money. You will need proof of funds to prove to Canadian Immigration that you can sustain yourself and any accompanying dependents during your settling-in period in Canada. They will require formal, solid proof of how you will manage this.
Which Programs Require Proof of Funds?
You will need to have proof of funds to meet the minimum Express Entry criteria for:
Which Programs Don't Require Proof of Funds?
You won't have to provide proof of your ability to financially survive in Canada in two instances:
- If you apply via the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) program
- If you have the authorization to be employed in Canada and have secured an offer of employment.
Ensure your proof of funds is updated in your profile. You may be eligible for multiple programs.
How Much Is Actually Enough?
We often find ourselves thinking we never have enough money. But how much is enough to survive in the Great White North? Well, the figure you'll get to will be determined according to the number of people it will have to support.
How to Calculate Your Family Size
To figure out how much money will be enough, you must calculate the size of your family, which can include:
- Your common-law partner or your spouse
- Any dependent children
- Your spouse or common-law partner’s dependent children
Include your common-law partner or spouse and dependent children, even if/when they’re:
- Canadian permanent residents or citizens, or
- Won’t accompanying you to Canada.
When calculating your family size, you'll need to add yourself, your spouse or common-law partner, and your children (your own and/or your partner's children).
Your children, as well as your partner's children, should be included in this calculator if they are still dependents (the Canadian government views children 22 and under as dependents). This must be done even if they are citizens of Canada, have Canadian Permanent Residency, or will not be joining you up north.
Should the amount you have exceeded the required amount, make sure you list the full amount in your application profile. The minimum amount needed to immigrate to Canada as of the 25th of April 2023 is as follows:
|Amount of Family Members||Required Funds (CAD)|
|For more than 7 people, for each added family member||3,706|
How Much Money Should You Bring?
To determine how much money you need while finding your feet in Canada, it's a good idea to research your chosen area. For example, consider whether the area is more rural, suburban, or cosmopolitan. This should give you an idea of what your budget would look like.
Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) also recommends bringing as many funds as you can. Being more fluid, in terms of cash, means that you'll be able to do things, like finding accommodation, a lot quicker.
Depending on which city or town you decide to settle in Canada you will be subject to varying degrees of living costs.
Do Settlement Fund Requirements Stay The Same?
No, the IRCC updates the minimum fund requirements annually. While the increase is not too high each year, staying abreast of changes would be a good idea, as this could impact your eligibility.
What are Settlement Fund Updates Based on?
The IRCC updates settlement fund increases by 12.5% of the low-income cut-off totals.
Arriving in Canada
Once you land on Canadian soil, you'll have to declare your funds to the immigration officer should these funds exceed CAD 10,000. Failure to declare these funds could result in the seizure of funds. Recognized funds include
- Traveler's cheques
- Banker's drafts
- Money orders
What Will Be Deemed Acceptable As Proof Of Funds?
According to Immigration, Citizenship and Refugees Canada (IRCC), the money shown to be available must be readily accessible. Please note that you can’t use fixed assets as proof of funds or take out a loan.
You can include money from a joint bank account if your spouse will be joining you in Canada. However, you will have to able to have proof that these funds are accessible to you, and the money must be available to you and your spouse upon application for PR.
How Do I Provide Proof of Funds?
You'll have to obtain official statements from your bank to prove that you have sufficient settlement funds. The statement, in the form of an official letter, will have to:
- Be in printed format
- Be done on your bank’s letterhead
- Contain all your bank's relevant details, from its address and telephone number to email details
- State your full name
- List your financial history and status
- How do all your bank account details
Canada: The Wonders of Settling in the North American Nation
Moving to Canada is one of the most valuable investments that you can make. The country is one of the world’s most prized immigration destinations, due to its stellar credentials in healthcare, education, employment, and housing.
Healthcare in Canada is universally accessible to all Canadian citizens and residents. Governmentally subsidized, it provides essential healthcare services to Canadian patients at no charge, administered by some of the best healthcare professionals in the country.
Canada’s education system is world-renowned. According to Times Higher Education, the country possesses some of the best tertiary institutions worldwide. This includes Universities such as:
Like healthcare, the provision of education in Canada is subsidized by the government. Therefore basic, secondary, and post-secondary education institutions are open to all eligible citizens and permanent residents of the country.
Canada’s doors are perennially open to newcomers, all influx of skilled and essential individuals that ensures that the country will never run out of innovative business ideas that can create employment opportunities. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Canada has some of the lowest unemployment rates among the world's major economies.
The Canadian government is committed to ensuring that everyone in the country has access to affordable housing. Housing in Canada is mostly provided through a mixture of government-subsidized housing developments, private development, and NGO housing initiatives.
All of these different forms of housing provision work hand in hand with work-aligned housing benefits to ensure that all Canadian residents and citizens have access to secure housing as is their due.
Is the Express Entry Program The Only One That Requires Proof of Funds?
No, proof of funds is not specific to the Express Entry system. For Example, the Atlantic Immigration Program (AIP), Start-up Visa Program, and Investor Visa Program. Because the Canadian government doesn't provide financial support to "investor" visas, you'll need proof that you have sufficient funds to settle in the country.
Will I Have To Prove that I Have Sufficient Settlement Funds If I Have An Offer Of Employment?
This does not apply to Federal Skilled Worker candidates but only if they have a valid offer of employment in Canada and currently work in Canada. They'll also have to be legally employed. At the same time, they are authorized to work in the country. Canadian Experience Class (CEC) Candidates also do not have to provide proof of funds.
Will I need to Bring The Entire Minimum Settlement Funds?
No, you don’t have to bring the whole amount when you come to Canada. You will, however, need to come prepared with a current bank statement. You may be asked for it by an immigration officer.