Statistics Canada has released a study of how often immigrants who studied outside Canada for “a regulated occupation” wind up working in that occupation. Of the various regulated professions, law admitted the least number of foreign-trained immigrants. According to the full report of the study, which used 2006 data,
Immigrants who studied law outside Canada had the lowest match rates of all fields of study leading to a regulated occupation. While 69% of the Canadian-born who studied law worked as lawyers, the corresponding figure was 12% for immigrants, making the Canadian-born with law degrees almost 6 times as likely as immigrants to be working as lawyers.
Health professions generally had the highest “match rates.”
Of all those in Canada who had studied law at the time of the research, 96,865 were Canadian-born and 29,120 were immigrants; of this latter group, 10,955 studied in Canada and 18,165 studied abroad. (See the chart of data for all the professions.)
The National Committee on Accreditation, the profession’s gatekeeper for all jurisdictions but Quebec, provides some statistics for the last decade — Summary of Evaluations 1999-2009 [PDF], Certificates of Qualification Issued 1999-2009 [PDF] — but they are shockingly badly labelled and explained, proving to be nearly useless. What they would appear to show is that England is the largest source of foreign-trained lawyers admitted to practice here, with 22.7% of the total (trebling in number over the decade, by the way), with the United States second at 19.6% (more than trebling in number) and India a close third at 17% (more than quadrupling over the decade).