International Students

Permanente Residence

Last update: June 2, 2023

Important: Quebec immigration programs will be reviewed in the coming months.  We will update this page when these changes come into effect.  Consult the ministerial announcement (in French).

There are several Canadian programs that can lead to Permanent Residence status. The majority of international students will be considered economic immigrants (qualified workers), and must complete their studies prior to qualifying for the process.

The immigration process is different if one wants to settle in Québec, versus settling in the rest of Canada. As a result, its very important to reflect on this prior to beginning the immigration process. Once permanent residence has been obtained, individuals may then move where they desire in Canada. Note that the Service aux étudiants does not offer consulting services about permanent residence; the following information is provided as a general guideline.


International students who wish to move permanently to Québec as skilled workers (after completing their studies) must submit an application for a Permanent Selection Certificate from the Ministère de l'Immigration, de la Francisation et de l'Intégration (MIFI), followed by a Permanent Residence request from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Some aspects to consider prior to beginning the process:

  • Cost is a factor: immigration processes cost roughly $1500 for a single individual. Depending on the immigration program that you’ve selected, processing delays may vary between 2 to 3 years.
  • There are two distinct programs for students who wish to immigrate to Québec: Québec Experience Program (PEQ) and the Regular Skilled Worker Program
  • The PEQ comprises two streams: graduates and qualified workers. The Québec Graduates program is intended for recent graduates from Québec-based institutions.  In both cases, application processing times can reach up to 6 months. 
  • If your application is accepted, you will receive a Québec Certificate of Selection (CSQ).  You may then submit an application for Permanent Residence with the IRCC. At the federal application stage, your criminal record as well as your health status will be examined. If you approved on both counts, at the end of the process, you will receive Permanent Residence status.
  • You do not need to hire a lawyer, or an immigration consultant to represent you in this process. 


If you wish to move to another Canadian province or territory (other than Québec), you must submit a request with the IRCC. The IRCC has an online system to manage Qualified Worker requests. Please refer to the IRCC website in order to learn more about how to submit an application for Express Entry to Canada.


I choose Montréal is an initiative that aims to better equip international students in the Greater Montréal area who wish to stay in Québec after their studies.

Information sessions are offered by both IRCC and  MIFI, in partnership with I Choose Montréal, during the Autumn and Winter semesters. Refer to I Choose Montréal for upcoming session dates.

For more information:

If you need further guidance, you can ask for an appointment at any of the community organizations that serve immigrant clients free of charge, such as Promis.  Click here for a complete list of organizations.

If you have retained your ASEQ dental insurance, it also comes with legal protection, which allows you to consult an immigration lawyer free of charge.