When you enter Canada there will be a variety of documents that you will need to obtain. However, you will also need some documentation from your home country to be able to obtain these documents. You can learn more about the documents you will need to bring with you on our helpful blog page.
Permanent Resident Card
The Permanent Resident Card (PR Card) is one of the most important documents that a Permanent Resident gets when they enter Canada because it is used to get most of the other important documents.
The PR Card is a plastic card that is very similar in size to a credit card and is issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) as an identification card for Canadian immigrants.
The PR Card is also necessary if you wish to travel abroad and is the easiest way to identify yourself as a Permanent Resident of Canada. Without a PR Card you will have to obtain travel documents, which are more temporary in nature and somewhat difficult to get.
The best idea is to simply get a PR Card when you first arrive in Canada and make sure that you keep it up-to-date.
Social Insurance Number
The Social Insurance Number (SIN) is the national identifier for all residents of Canada, which ties them into the many social assistance programs available.
In order to get this document you will need to apply for it at a Service Canada Centre with your Permanent Resident Card. The Service Canada office will only accept original documents. It is likely that if your papers are in order you can leave with your SIN card on the same day as applying.
As a Permanent Resident you may have to wait up to three months before you can apply for a Canadian national health card and national health care. The Canadian government strongly recommends that you purchase private health insurance until you are eligible for a health card.
When you are eligible you can get applications for the health card online, at a doctor’s office, hospital or pharmacy. When applying for a health card you will need to provide identification such as birth a certificate and your PR Card.
Every family member should have one of these cards and you should present it to a health care provider when you receive medical treatment.
Many people in Canada have cars and in order to drive one you will need to have a driver’s license. Each province or territory is responsible for issuing driver’s licenses and you should contact the local governmental body that concerns itself with driver’s licenses.
Some professions require that workers in their field be certified. Many of these professions have provincial certification bodies, but there are a few national bodies.
Use the National Occupation Classification website to determine whether or not your profession requires you to hold certification to practice your profession.