There are two ways to apply for a provincial nomination in the Express Entry process:
(Passive Approach) You create an Express Entry profile and indicate that you are interested in a particular province or territory.
(Proactive Approach) You contact a province or territory directly and apply to be nominated under an Express Entry stream.
Let's explore both of these options in greater detail:
Passive. A province or territory finds your Express Entry profile and contacts you
In this case, provinces and territories use the portal to search for candidates in the Express Entry pool.
They can narrow their search by filtering profiles for factors such as language ability, education, work experience, etc.
Provinces and territories can find your profile if you:
1. If a province or territory is interested in you, they will send you a “notification of interest” letter to your account. This letter will instruct you to contact the province or territory directly to discuss your options. The notification of interest letter is not a provincial nomination, and it does not guarantee that you will be nominated.
2. You apply to the province or territory's Express Entry-aligned stream directly through their official website. You will not be using your Express Entry account to communicate with them. The province or territory will assess you and ask you to provide your Express Entry profile number and Job Seeker Validation Code.
3. If your application to the province or territory is approved, you will receive a message in your account asking if you accept or do not accept the nomination. You can find the nomination at the top of your Application/profile details page. From there, simply click the "accept" or "not accept" button in your account.
You will only have 30 days to accept or reject the nomination.
You may be nominated by more than one province at a time, but you can only accept one nomination at a time.
Proactive. Apply to a province or territory directly
In this case, you are applying directly to the province or territory for nomination.
You must meet the eligibility requirements of one of their Express Entry-aligned streams and apply to the province directly on their official website.
If they are interested in nominating you, you then:
1. update your profile to show that you have a nomination and indicate that you are interested in the province or territory if you haven’t already.
2. contact the province or territory directly and provide them with your Express Entry profile number and Job Seeker Validation code.
3. wait for the province or territory to confirm your nomination with IRCC.
4. If your application to the province or territory is approved, you will receive a message in your account asking you if you accept or do not accept the nomination. You can find the nomination at the top of your Application/profile details page.
From there, simply click the "accept" or "not accept" button in your account.
The two approaches are very similar and both require you to have an Express Entry profile.
The paper-based PNP approach is unrelated to Express Entry.
In this case, you are applying directly to the province or territory under a non-Express Entry-aligned stream.
You must meet the eligibility requirements of a non-Express Entry-aligned PNP and apply to the province directly on their official website.
You can receive more than one notification of interest at a time, but can only have one nomination at a time. If you received an offer for nomination from one province or territory, but would like to be selected by a different province or territory, you have to decline the first nomination before another province can send you their nomination.