Here's hoping someone out there might be able to provide some answers or at the very least, suggest a definitive direction to head in.
Our tale is unfortunately long winded but in expressing as much detail as possible, we hope it might help us in finding answers. We suspect these answers aren't likely cut and dried but given our circumstances, all advice will be welcomed and greatly appreciated. I will try not to miss out any relevant information but if you feel I have, just ask.
Firstly our ages. My wife has just hit 60 while I am late fifties. We're both UK residents.
It was a good number of years ago we first visited Canada where it is true to say, unlike any other vacation we had shared, the country left a telling memory, so much so that around seven years ago, when we were looking to buy a holiday property, we extended our search to the U.S. and Canada and eventually bought in B.C in the T & O region. We'd researched things quite extensively, especially knowing we would probably not get to visit more than once or twice a year and bought in an area we were able to rent the property for a fair proportion of the time we would not be there.
Cut short, in 2010 my wife, through friends we had made in Canada, was approached and asked if she would consider a job offer with a company not five minutes walk from our Canadian home. The offer came at a time when my wife was feeling pretty down and disgruntled about her then job, which was as a Housekeeping manager in a large residential home.
The offer had come completely out of the blue and while I would have taken all of five seconds to come up with my answer, the offer had not been mine to accept, and so it was, after discussing things in great detail I left it up to my wife to make a final decision. To be honest, I felt it was going to be a negative, especially when she considered the grandkids but to my surprise, after much thought, she decided to say yes.
Moving on, my wife took up her position September 2010. The company applied for an LMO (1 year)with a suggestion, with their assistance, she could apply for PR after a two year period. Meantime, in discussions with the same company while I was there on Holiday in September 2010, they advised they would find a position for me in their organisation, which they duly did, again through the process of LMO/Work visa, again for 1 year. I joined my wife mid December 2010. My employment was in the companies maintenance dept where they hoped my carpentry trade would be put to good use.
Jump forward to August 2011 when my wife returned to the UK for a holiday where on her return, August 2nd, she used the second LMO application to re-enter Canada with a further years work visa. At around the same time I was offered a supervisory position within the department I worked with a suggestion made by the company, this would assist in putting me forward for the faster route of PR by utilizing the BC Nominee program. At this stage I should make it clear, my working in Canada was NOT a career move but more because the two of us wanted a change/better life for ourselves. However, if my accepting the offer of supervisor was going to assist with our PR process then I was more than happy to accept.
Some 12 weeks before my then current work visa was due to expire I contacted the HR manager to ask she submit the necessary forms to get the necessary LMO from which I could then get another year long work visa. Here I have to be a tad vague but my guess is the LMO application was not made in due time leading to my having to submit a personal application for an Open work visa, piggy backed on my wife's existing visa. Needless to say, I was less than impressed with the HR individual but in the due course of time I received my open work visa. It can also be said, at this stage the company were still looking to promote me via the BC Nominee program.
Move forward to January 2012 and the situation, for reasons i still do not know, had changed. Suddenly I was no longer going to be promoted via the BC Nominee program but instead they would apply for another LMO, my second. Then it changed again and they would only apply for a general LMO not a carpenter specific one, which they argued they could not afford to pay me the rates of pay needed.
At this time, at each meeting with HR, matters grew worse until bottom line, they are now NOT applying for an LMO with their best suggestion being for me to contact an immigration lawyer, which for obvious reasons is something I have no real wish to do, ,mainly because I see them little more than accident lawyers. They tell me they are more than prepared to write a letter with the offer of full time employment to back any application I would need to make.
It is also the case, my wife too is not going to receive the benefit of a further LMO which, if they were prepared to do so, would have seen her having worked for a full two years and would therefore allow her to apply herself for PR.
In conclusion, we are both able to continue working here until August 2nd 2012. My wife on a work specific visa while I have an open work permit. We both dearly want to stay here in Canada and will do whatever is necessary to do so, which is where we are seeking advice from those of you whom we hope are far more experienced in these matters.
Are either of us yet in a position to realistically apply for PR at this stage. As mentioned above, by August 2nd 2012 I will have been working in Canada for 19 months, my wife for 23 months.
All advice will be gratefully received.
PS there will be some of you wondering why the company is being like it is. I have tried to ask that question of a number of individuals including the company owner and despite my best efforts, i have been unable to extract any honest reply so it is likely, questions you might have with this regard, I myself will not be able to answer.
I hope I haven;t made this too long but simply wanted to add as much detail as possible.