Applying for a Study Permit in British Columbia and Alberta? See How You Can Get Your Provincial Attestation Letter

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British Columbia and Alberta Issuing Provincial Attestation Letters

As per the latest updates released on 4th March 2024 BC (British Columbia) and Albert are now issuing Provincial Attestation Letters. The issuing procedure is running and effective from 4th March 2024. The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced on 22nd January 2024 that new study permit applications must attach a PAL with their study permit application. Further, it has also been announced that Alberta has also begun issuing PAL to foreign students. Foreign students who are willing to study in Canada must apply for a PAL (Provincial Attestation Letter) along with their study permit application. PAL is now mandatory to get a study permit in Canada for certain students.

Requirements to Study in Canada 2024

What are Canada Provincial Attestation Letters?

PAL or Provincial Attestation Letter is a verification letter sent by the provinces to the institution which is then sent to the overseas applicant. This letter will serve as proof that the application has been accounted for within the federal government’s maximum limit. Applicants are required to include the attestation letter with their study permit application. Institutions that have already used their full allocation will not be able to submit additional applications until the federal government issues a new allocation for the upcoming year. However, there will be a limited number of attestations that can be issued in Canada.

British Columbia – The issuing procedure for PAL has already started from 4th March 2024.

Alberta – Alberta will start issuing attestation letters from 31st March 2024.

Application Process for Provincial Attestation Letters of British Columbia

Provinces such as Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, etc will require PALs. All these provinces and territories of Canada will be allocating the number of foreign students they will be able to accommodate by the federal or provincial government. After the allocation PALs will be issued to international students willing to study in Canada.

How many Provincial Attestation Letters will British Columbia Issue in 2024?

British Columbia is not allowed to issue 83000 undergraduate study permit applicants. This number is much less as compared to 97000 last year for undergraduate programs. Based on recent acceptance rates, the federal government is anticipating roughly 50000 granted study permit applications in 2024. 

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Eligibility Requirements to get PALs

Check below the eligibility criteria required to be satisfied to get a study permit and PALs in Canada:

  • Candidates should be enrolled in DLI
  • They should have enough money to support themselves in Canada. They should be able to pay their tuition fees, living expenses, return transportation costs, etc
  • They should obey the laws and should not have any criminal records
  • They should be in good health and pass a medical exam
  • They should have the intention to leave Canada after completing their studies

Document Requirements for Canada Study Permit

Check below the list of documents to get study permit in Canada:

  • Acceptance letter from any educational institution
  • Passport valid for at least 6 months
  • Proof of funds to show that they will be able to support themselves and their family members who will accompany them to Canada

How to Get a Canada Provincial Attestation Letter?

Candidates will get attestation letters from 31st March 2024. In order to get the letter the candidates should be minors, have a study permit extension, or have a master’s, doctoral, or post-graduation degree. Unless the candidates do not satisfy the above requirements they will not be eligible to apply for a study permit until the provincial government has a system or policy in place.

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Who Requires a Provincial Attestation Letter (PAL)?

Candidates with post-secondary study permits who are applying to non-degree issuing graduate programs such as certificate programs and diplomas require a PAL (Provincial Attestation Letter).

cc: Immigration Services

Who does not Require a Provincial Attestation Letter (PAL)?

Check the list below to know who all do not require a PAL (Provincial Attestation Letter):

  • Master’s or doctoral degree students 
  • Primary and secondary school students
  • Students already in Canada applying for an extension
  • Students already in Canada with a valid study permit in-Canada work permit holders and their in-Canada family members
  • Students whose application was received before 8:30 a.m. (Eastern time) on Jan. 22, 2024

Check the News Updates on British Columbia and Alberta are Now Issuing Provincial Attestation Letters 


Are the study permit applicants required to apply for a PAL for Canada?

No, as of now BC and Alberta have set up a procedure where their educational institutions are in charge of obtaining a PAL for the candidates along with their offer letter.

Are international students already in Canada required to apply for a Canada study permit?

No, onshore international candidates in Canada are not required to apply for a provincial letter to extend or renew their study permit.

Do the post-graduate or diploma students require a PAL?

Yes, post-graduate and diploma students require a provincial attestation letter.

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