Professional American athletes can move to Canada on a temporary, employer-specific work permit. An offer from a Canadian employer, such as a professional sports team, is required to receive this temporary work permit. Temporary work permits may be renewed.
Professional American athletes seeking permanent residency in Canada can take advantage of the Federal Skilled Worker – Express Entry pathway. To be successful in the Federal Skilled Worker program, you must meet certain minimum requirements regarding work experience, language ability, and education. Your application is ultimately assessed based on six factors: age, education, work experience, French and/or English language skills, your likelihood of adapting to Canada successfully, and whether or not you have a valid job offer.
Those who are highly ranked through the Express Entry application process are invited to apply for permanent residency in Canada as Federal Skilled Workers. If you already have a job offer from a Canadian employer, you may be invited to apply for permanent residency.
Processing of Express Entry applicants is done within six months, making this immigration route one of the quickest ways to gain permanent residency in Canada.
Permanent residency can be attractive to some athletes as it allows them to remain in Canada indefinitely. Moreover, permanent residency leads to Canadian citizenship, which some American athletes may ultimately desire.