Immigrants to Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia needs skilled tradespersons. If you are exploring the possibility of immigrating to the province, or you have already been accepted, please review the information and key links below.


Find out about immigrating through the Nova Scotia Nominee Program (NSNP) by reviewing this website: Read about the Federal Skilled Trades Program Express Entry, find out whether you are eligible and download application forms at: Immigration & Citizenship Canada.

Some internationally-trained tradespeople enter Canada as Temporary Foreign Workers. This program is designed to meet the needs of Canadian employers but it can also be a first step towards immigration. Check out the Temporary Foreign Worker Program website.

 FOR MORE INFO... or advice about immigrating to Nova Scotia, email, and a Nova Scotia Office of Immigration Officer will respond.


  • Before deciding to immigrate, find out about the labour market in Nova Scotia at Nova Scotia Labour Force Survey.
  • To explore the demand for your trade in Nova Scotia visit Nova Scotia Works' Explore Careers.
  • To prepare a resume that meets Canadian standards, check out Nova Scotia Works' Resumes. It is important to include details about your education and work experience, but do not include personal information about your age, marital status, family, religion etc. Canadian resumes also do not include photos.


There are many designated trades in Nova Scotia. Some are “compulsory certified trades” under the Apprenticeship and Trades Qualification Act. This means that you must have a Certificate of Qualification or be an apprentice (learning on-the-job) to work legally in that trade. Most trades are NOT compulsory.  Compulsory and non-compulsory trades in Nova Scotia.

To get a Nova Scotia Certificate of Qualification, you must pass the certification exam in your trade. In most trades, the certification exam is a Red Seal exam. Red Seal exams are recognized across Canada. Once you pass a Red Seal exam, you can work anywhere in Canada without further training or examination.

Red Seal Exams are based on the National Occupational Analysis (NOA) or Red Seal Occupational Analysis (RSOS) for your trade. NOAs/RSOSs define the scope of a trade as it is practiced in Canada and outline the knowledge and key competencies required to demonstrate competence in the trade. To understand the full scope of your trade, visit the Red Seal website at Click on the Resource Centre in the main menu at the top, then click on Consult a Trade’s NOA. Select the NOA for your trade from the list. You can download a PDF version of the document.

 MORE INFO... about how to become certified and qualify to work in your trade in Nova Scotia.


These links may help you find potential employers in Nova Scotia:


Once you are approved to immigrate, Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS) can provide additional programs and services to help with employment, language learning and general settlement in the province of Nova Scotia. You can start these programs before you arrive.