Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentImmigration · 8 months ago

How does a Canadian immigrate to USA?

I've looked it up online, but I keep reading different things, and it sounds like a very long complicated process.

Is anyone able to explain it to me as if I were 5?


@ J

Work opportunity and health care. Canadian healthcare is great for otherwise unaffordable procedures, but the doctors at clinics are scarce, cheap, and do not do their due diligence to ensure you are healthy because of they are instructed to do as little as possible. 

7 Answers

  • 8 months ago

    The way I would explain it to you if you were five would be to tell you that you can't immigrate by yourself, because you're five, and have to leave wherever your parents live.

    Kidding aside, the answer to you is the same as the answer to the five-year-old: YOU can't immigrate to the U.S. Not everyone can. Almost no one can. The U.S. allows in far fewer immigrants than it needs, and has voluntarily chosen to hurt its own farm industry by keeping out the workers that the farms need. Very few can immigrate -- and you probably aren't one of them.

  • Lisa A
    Lv 7
    8 months ago

    You need your US citizen parent, sibling, spouse, or child over 21 to file a form I-130 for you to get the process started.

  • 8 months ago


  • 8 months ago

    Unless you are independently wealthy, obtain a fiancé/fiancée visa, or have immediate family already in America who will act as sponsors you will need a job + a work visa to move to the USA. You need a sponsor (employer) for a work visa - you can't apply for one on your own.

    A work visa is not an immigrant visa, but it CAN maybe, eventually lead to permanent residence.

    Canadians do have an advantage and can work in the USA on TN status, but not all occupations qualify:

    Check with US companies in Canada and Canadian companies with offices in the USA. For example, Hilton and Marriott hire international staff as interns. Canadian citizens can visit the USA with only a valid passport, so you could travel for interviews & tests if necessary. Do NOT say anything about a job or work to the US Immigration Officer when entering as a tourist unless it is about your occupation in your home country.

    Search "international exchange programs USA" and there should be many links to programs that offer temporary and seasonal work in the US.

    Examples are:

    Do carefully check any programs you might be interested in as not all of them are a good deal. Another option is to go to school in the USA.

    Consider attending university in the USA. Canadians do not need an actual US student visa and you MAY be able to work on-campus. Time spent in the USA as a student does not count toward permanent residency. However, an advanced degree from a USA university in a STEM field will make applying for jobs easier and a job can be a path to permanent resident status. You can apply for citizenship after five years as a permanent resident (three years if married to a US citizen).

    Going to school in the US will also help you decide if you really want to move here: If you decide to go to university in the USA the first step is to identify several schools you might want to attend and make contact with their offices of international students. For example:

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  • J
    Lv 6
    8 months ago

    Why on earth would you want to do that?

  • 8 months ago

    To immigrate, your immediate relative who is a US citizen AND who earns enough to support self + all dependents + you, AND has a suitable home in the US for you can petition for your immigration. Depending on your relationship to your sponsor, it can take up to 13-15 years before your Priority Date becomes current so that you get an immigration interview at the nearest US consulate to your home in Canada. Just over 90% of immigrants to US are sponsored by immediate relatives.

    IF you are exceptionally well educated & experienced in a STEM occupation which is in short supply, you might qualify for temporary employment visa. These are tough since competition for any job anywhere which offers any chance of temporary employment visa attracts huge volumes of applicants from around the world.

    Canadians may be eligible for TN (treaty trader) visa under NAFTA or intracompany transfer. Your Canadian employer, IF they want you in their US offices/operations, and you qualify, will handle visa matters.

    Other options are extremely rare, highly unlikely, or you're not eligible (e.g DV Lottery - Canadian citizens not eligible).

    Yes, you have to queue up behind MILLIONS of people already in line to immigrate. It is taking as long as 25 years to get an immigration interview for people on already approved petitions. You must remain in your country until you are approved AND receive your visa to enter US.

  • 8 months ago

    You essentially have two options.  

    1. You need to secure a job with a US employer or Canadian employer with offices in the US, who will sponsor you to obtain an H1-B visa.  This allows you to live and work in the USA as long as you have an employer who will sponsor the visa.   Once you're in the USA you can apply for a green card which would give you permanent status w/o the need to an employer to sponsor you.  

    2. You need a citizen of the USA to sponsor you, i.e. you need to marry an American or have a family member who is a US citizen sponsor you.  They would need to agree to support you as I'm not certain you can legally work in the US without a temporary worker visa?

    If it makes you feel better it's just as hard if not harder for an American to legally immigrate to Canada.

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