PhotoIn the election cycles since the American population became so ideologically polarized, there has always been a celebrity or two declaring “I'm leaving the country if (fill in the blanks) is elected.”

This year, you hear it a lot more, and from both sides of the political divide. Many backers of both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are threatening to pack up and move to Canada if the other candidate wins.

Since one of the two is bound to win, Canada could see a population boom as disaffected Americans head north. But moving to another country isn't quite as simple as moving to another state.

Documentation process

U.S. citizens don't need an Electronic Travel Authorization or visa to visit Canada, but moving there will require going through a documentation process. You'll need to answer a series of questions that include:

  • nationality

  • age

  • language ability

  • family members

  • education

  • work experience

  • income and/or net worth

  • details on any job offer

You'll then be told if you are eligible to immigrate. If you are, you'll get a list of instructions to follow.

Skills help your cause

The Canadian government makes clear that it values immigrants who possess skills. It says it chooses applicants based on their ability to move to Canada and contribute to the economy. If you possess marketable skills, you may qualify for Canada's Express Entry program.

You can learn how the Express Entry program works here.

You stand a better chance of qualifying if you have skills, good work experience, language ability, and have a good education.

If you're invited to apply for permanent residence in Canada, you'll be required to fill out necessary forms and provide a series of documents, including passport, language test results, a written job offer if you have one, and, in some cases, proof you have enough money to support yourself and any family members immigrating with you.

Medical exam

You also have to complete a medical exam. The government may not allow you to move there if it thinks you have a health condition posing a danger to the community or would create too much demand on Canada's health services.

Once you've cleared all these conditions, you may immigrate, after you pay a $490 processing fee per person, excluding dependent children.

There is a different program for political refugees. However, the Canadian government may not think your candidate losing the U.S. Presidential election qualifies.


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