THE “UGLY” THINGS OF CANADA
TO BE TO LAST
IN THE LINE
It is always a
disadvantage to be the last in the line in many situations that immigrants
have to face: Visa application, travel, housing and job search, etc.
As many other
situations, these shall only be temporary. The positive way of considering
these facts is to have an action plan, which will let you get benefit,
welfare and a better future for you and your family.
As an old saying
(Canadian?) says: , “There are only two sure things in a man’s life:
First, that he shall
pay taxes, the second, that he will die”
And in Canada this
is absolutely right. You will have to pay the following sale tax over most
of the products (some food products are the exception):
● 7 % - GST
● 5 % - PST
On the other hand,
every worker has to pay an income tax which shall be deducted from his
salary by the employer. Rate is different according to the amount of the
salary, and it is calculated over the total salary earned per year. These
taxes (In Ontario) are the following:
● Low Salaries:
Between $1.000 and $ 31.676 per year you shall pay taxes from 0% to 15.9 % (aprox)
● Medium Salaries:
Between $31.677 and $ 63.353 per year you shall pay taxes from 16% to 25.9%
● High Salaries:
Between $63.354 and $ 103.000 per year you shall pay taxes from 26% to 29% %
● Salaries over $
103.000 per year you shall pay taxes of 29 %.
As a worker or
employee, from the base amount shall be deducted the following:
● CPP contribution
to pension plan.
● EI - Employment
NOTE: The rates shown
above are aprox. for Ontario, and are the addition of different type of
taxes imposed on workers (Ontario Provincial Income Tax, Ontario Health
Premium, etc). These taxes may vary in other provinces of Canada, where
rates are generally lower.
Tax rates pay by
Canadian citizens are within the highest around the world. There are
· Health and education financed by
· Large quantity of government
employees with high salaries (burocracy)
· Relatively small population in a
big country, where expenses are high (highways, police, public services,
firemen, town employees, etc).
information on taxes, follow the following link:
TAXES _ ONTARIO
START FROM THE
When you start living
in Canada, you will have to learn again many things that you used to do as a
routine in your country of origin. Moreover, to integrate in your new
country and increase your possibilities of finding a good job, you will have
to go to schools where you will learn important things as:
● ENGLISH or
Schools to learn
English and French are free for immigrants and the best way to increase your
level of these languages.
If you decide to live
at Quebec Province, you will have to learn French to successfully integrate
into the working and social environment. In order to be more successful in
your career of profession in Quebec, you will also have to learn English,
since business and commercial relations are handled in both languages.
● Driving School
To drive a car in
Canada it is obligatory to have a Drivers License, which it is obtained if
you approve at least 2 exams (Theory and Road Tests). Even when you have
driven a car many years in your country, you will have to take those exams.
Although it is not obligatory to have a certificate from a driving school,
it is advisable to take a driving course or private lessons, to increase
your possibilities of approving the Road Test. In general, immigrants need
to take more than once the road test to finally approve it and obtain the
● Job Search
These courses offered
to immigrants are the best way of learning the Canadian way of searching a
job. In these coursers you will learn resume techniques, how to write cover
letters, and in some cases, how to prepare for the interviews.
● College or
If you take a
university course (master) in your profession in Canada, it will be much
easier for you to get a good job there. In that way, you will get profession
recognition of your career and besides you will have a degree from a
Canadian institution, with which you will increase you "employability".
professional ethics and Canadian technical codes (security, electricity,
construction, handling of gas, food etc) courses have to be taken in the
cases of many professions and technical careers in order to be recognized by
professional unions and obtaining obligatory special licenses.
● Learn History,
Geography and Politics of Canada
After 3 years of
living in Canada, Permanent Residents have the right to apply for
citizenship and Canadian passport. In order to obtain them, applicants under
60 must prepare and approve an exam in English or French on Geography,
History and Politic Administration of Canada. To prepare for this exam, you
can take a school courses or you can study by yourself.
● Adapt to New
Even though many
immigrants try to keep their own original cultures, it is also necessary to
observe Canadian people uses and rules, especially when dealing with other
people. Many uses are common in the occidental world, other are more local
customs. Among these uses, the most important are:
● Before a visit,
you have to make a call and confirm. In many countries of the world,
surprise visit to friends or relatives are accepted, this is not the use in
Canada. It is always advisable to call your friends to announce your visit,
and not arrive by surprise.
● During a Visit
When they arrive to a house or apartment, all the visitors take off their
shoes, and put them orderly in a small closet or box and then enter the
house only with the sockets. This use is very generalized, no matter the
culture or origin of the house owner. If you don’t do it, it is taken as a
lack of respect for the house owner.
People use to arrive to a place at the arranged time. Arriving 5 or more
minutes later it is considered an offense.
This is the normal
situation of many immigrants. One of the disadvantages of not having a
network is when you are searching a job, since more than the 70 % of the
potential jobs are in the hidden market, and those job searches are never
As time passes, the
immigrant shall built his network, through people known in different stages
of his adaptation in Canada (technical courses, English schools, work
courses etc.) The positive part of this stage for the Skilled Worker in
Canada is that most of their new friends shall be of their own education
level, in similar conditions and with the same needs. Through this
communication with other immigrants, especially those speaking the same
language, people and families exchange experiences and learn important data
about the life in Canada.
Most workers in
Canada are hired with salaries based on an hourly fee. Working journey is
of 40 to 44 hours per week, depending on the province. When there is not
enough work in a company, they simply tell their employees not to come until
they are needed again. They will not receive any salary or compensation for
the day or time when they don’t work (unemployment insurance does not cover
the first two weeks) and before the Ministry of Work this is a normal
For example, in a
manufacturing company of spare parts for a Michigan (USA) company, parts are
not manufactured if it is a holiday in USA, since there is no car production
these days, so their workers shall not have to go to work, and therefore,
shall not receive any salary for that day.
Besides, every day it
is becoming more popular in Canada to use Temporal Employment Agencies,
especially in big companies, like Car spare parts manufacturers, so they do
not hire their employees directly. This form of employment benefits the
industrial companies by reducing costs, and damages workers, who shall
receive a lower salary than a direct employee of the company, since the
temporary agency shall receive a part of it.
Program for Professionals and skilled workers is universal, and each week
thousands of immigrants arrive from countries all over the world. The twelve
most common countries of origin of the immigrants who arrived to Canada in
2004 and 2005 are: China, India, Philippines, Pakistan, USA, Colombia,
United Kingdom, Korea, Iran, France, Rumania and Russia.
It is worth mentioned
that professional and skilled workers arriving to Canada are not only from
third world countries, many immigrants are from first world countries, like
USA, England, Italy and France. These immigrants have the advantage of the
language and their degrees are more easily recognized compared to workers of
Apart from expensive
taxes and home rental, other basic services are equally expensive, like gas
(indispensable during winter) and Cable TV (necessary to be informed,
especially to know daily weather). During January and February the cost of
gas, only used for heating purposes at home (not for cooking) may reach $
300 to $ 400 per month. Cable TV fee (including internet) may be between $
90 and $ 120 per month, depending on the service. In other terms, to support
these basic services, you will have to work between 48 to 65 hours in a $ 8
per hour job.
A valid driver’s
license is obligatory in Canada to drive. That license can be obtained
applying and approving practical exams. It is not easy to approve Road
Tests in highways, and you will be rejected if you make mistakes in some of
the 50 or more subjects evaluated by the examiner during the road test. In
practice, most immigrants have to apply several times for theses exams until
they approve and get the license.
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BOOK AND APPLIED THE ADVISES.
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