Canada has started to use a tie-breaking rule in the Express Entry Draws since the advent of coronavirus pandemic. This rule only applies to those applicants in the Express Entry Pool with the same score as the lowest score selected in any draw.

Since Canada’s travel restrictions were set in order in mid-March to contain the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, every Express Entry draw has seen the tie-break rule used or implemented.

The tie-break rule is normally used to rank individuals who have the same Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. The individuals are ranked by the date and time their Express Entry profiles were added into the Express Entry pool.

This means that the tie-breaking rule prioritizes profiles that have been in the Express Entry pool for a longer period of time.

For example, the latest Express Entry draw of June 25 sent out 3,508 invitations to apply for Canadian permanent residence to candidates with minimum CRS scores of 431. In this draw, the tie-breaking rule was used.

This means that candidates with a CRS score of 431 who had lodged their Express Entry profile prior to a specific date and time were granted an invitation. The dates and time used for that draw were April 3, 2020, at 12:56:32 UTC.

Other examples are as follows:

  • Joe lodged his profile into the Express Entry pool on January 1st, 2018 and got confirmation that he was entered into the January 1st 2018 Express Entry Pool with a score of 444.
  • Sara entered her profile into the Express Entry on January 21st, 2018 and received confirmations that she was entered into the Express Entry Pool on Jan. 21st, 2018 with a score of 444.
  • Henry submitted his profile into the Express Entry pool on Jan. 23rd, 2018 and received confirmations that he was entered into the Express Entry System on January 23rd, 2018 with a score of 445.
  • On Jan. 24th, 2018, Canada’s immigration ministry handed out 2,750 Invitations to Apply to anyone who had a score of 444 or above, with a tie-breaking rule of Jan. 17th, 2018.
  • Joe and Henry would both receive an Invitation to Apply
    Sara would not receive an Invitation to Apply

The tie-break rule would normally  apply to applicants whose CRS score is the same as the draw’s cutoff Points In the June 25 draw, only Those with a CRS score of exactly 431 would be affected by the rule.

An applicant’s CRS score remains the principal factor in selecting candidates to be invited to apply for Canadian permanent residence.

It is worth noting that if an applicant makes changes to their Express Entry profile, this does not affect the timestamp of when the profile was first Lodged.

For instance, if an applicant first submit their Express Entry profiles in March, and makes changes in June that increases their Cumulative relative score to 431, they would have been invited in the June 25 draw.

But, if a candidate deletes their profile and submits their profile again after April 3 at 12:56:32 UTC, they would not have been invited in the June 25th draw.

The following table shows the candidates that were invited and the those that would still be in the pool.

Rank CRS score Date and time of profiles submission Status
3507 431 April 1, 2020, at 19:38:41  Invited
3508 431 April 2, 2020, at 10:42:01  Invited
3509 431 April 3, 2020, at 12:59:39  Still in the pool
3510 431 April 4, 2020, at 22:33:58  Still in the pool
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