The Canada Work Permit – Types and Requirements

An official document known as a Canada Work Permit enables a foreigner to work while they are in Canada. About 500,000 temporary foreign workers receive work permits from Canada each year from all over the world.

For most foreign citizens looking for career possibilities, Canada is a top choice. For individuals looking to move permanently to Canada, working there is a fantastic first step.

Who can work in Canada with a Canada Work Permit?

canada work permit

With a few exceptions, the majority of foreign citizens need permission to be able to work inside Canada.

Most applicants will need a Canadian employment offer accompanied by  Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) in order to submit an application to get a work permit . With certain exceptions, migrant workers may request for a work permit with no LMIA or a job offer. A college grad out of a Canadian Designated Learning Institute (DLI) or the spouse of someone who is already in possession of a work or study permit in Canada are two examples of this.

Candidates who are eligible to apply for a Canadian work permit should also satisfy the following criteria:

  • Prove they have enough money to maintain themselves and their family in Canada
  • Are not barred from entering Canada due to a criminal conviction or a physical condition
  • Indicate their intention to depart once their work permission expires.
  • Make arrangements to work for a qualified employer
  • Are able to present the necessary documentation proving their admissibility to enter Canada

Types of Canada work permit

A Canada Work Permit can be obtained in a variety of ways. Some work permits call for an employer’s employment offer to be from Canada, others need that the company produce a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), and still others demand that the applicant have some type of link to Canada (past education, sponsorship by spouse, etc.). The categories are as explained below.

Canadian Work Permits that require Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)

Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP)

The TFWP assists Canadian companies in finding the necessary international talent. Additionally, it guarantees that all these foreign employees have the rights and measures necessary for them to work in safety in Canada.The TFWP’s need for a Labour Market Impact Assessment is one of its fundamental features (LMIA). An LMIA proving that they were unable to locate a Canadian or naturalised citizen to fill the post is required before a company may recruit a foreign national under TFWP. An employer can only formally engage a foreign citizen after acquiring an LMIA, which then enables the foreign nationals to qualify for a Canadian work permit or permanent residency.

Facilitated LMIA (Quebec) List of Occupations

In terms of Canadian immigration, the Quebec province is exceptional. The reason Quebec’s immigration programmes are frequently treated differently from those of the other provinces is because the federal government has given Quebec much greater autonomy in terms of its immigration laws and processes compared to other provinces. As a result, the region has a few special restrictions on the employment of foreign labour. Particularly, Quebec makes it easier to hire international employees by facilitating the LMIA procedure.

Canada Global Talent Stream (GTS)

A collaboration between Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) resulted in the establishment of the Global Talent Stream (GTS) in June 2017). The GTS helps some Canadian businesses compete internationally by helping them acquire highly talented workers from throughout the world. Employers who successfully complete the programme will be allowed to use the Global Skills Strategy to speed up the employment of foreign nationals.

Canadian work permit with LMIA-Exempt but requiring a job offer or employment contract

canada work permit
source: Istockphotos

International Mobility Program

Employers in Canada can hire temporary foreign employees under the International Mobility Program (IMP) without first conducting a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). While most firms that hire foreign labour will need an LMIA, there are several situations when an LMIA is not necessary. 

NAFTA Work Permits

A trilateral trade pact known as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was negotiated in 1994 between Canada, the United States, and Mexico. The people of the United States as well as those of Mexico have exceptional chances to work in Canada thanks to NAFTA. Foreign people covered by NAFTA rules could be qualified to work in Canada without needing a work visa or a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Professional employees have the option to apply for a Canadian work visa under the NAFTA Professionals clause without first completing a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). The worker must have experience in a profession on the NAFTA Professional List of Professions and receive a job offer from an employer in Canada in order to qualify under this clause.

CETA Work Permits

Canada and the European Union negotiated a global trade deal known as the CETA (Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement) (EU). The contract became effective on September 21, 2017. CETA offers exceptional chances for EU people to take a job in Canada. Foreign people covered by CETA regulations can be qualified to work in Canada without needing a work visa or even a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Intra-Company Transfers  

The procedures for allowing highly skilled foreign people to work momentarily in Canada like intra-company transferees are outlined in the International Mobility Program of Canada. A foreign person working for a multinational corporation may be qualified to move to one of the company’s sites in Canada with the use of an LMIA-exempt work permit. In all nations, this intra-company transfer rule is applicable.

Canada Open Work Permits (no job offer or LMIA required)

source: istockphotos

The Ultimate Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Guide

Post-graduation work permits (PGWPs) are unrestricted work visas granted to foreign students who complete a programme of study in Canada. PGWPs give its holders the freedom to work anywhere they choose, for any company, and for whatever many hours they want.

PGWPs are an excellent method to get priceless Canadian work experience and are valid for eight months to about  three years. Once a candidate has worked in Canada, many avenues for obtaining Canadian permanent residency become available.

Spouse Open Work Permit (SOWP) Canada

You could qualify for an open work permit if your spouse is already employed or enrolled in school in Canada, or if your spouse has sought to sponsor you for permanent residence in Canada.

If a foreign national’s request for a work permit is approved, they will be given an open work permit that allows them to work for several different employers in any part of Canada while their application for permanent residency is being processed or even while their partner has a valid immigration status in Canada. Depending on the applicant’s position in Canada or the status of their application for permanent residency, different application processes exist for the spousal sponsorship open work permit. Without the necessary authorization, foreign nationals are not permitted to work in Canada.

International Experience Canada

A series of initiatives known as International Experience Canada (IEC) allow young people from member nations to visit Canada temporarily to live and work there. If one of the IEC initiatives results in success, foreign people will be qualified to apply for a work permit in Canada without first undergoing a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). With the acceptance of work permits, IEC enables temporary stays in Canada for a total of a year.

IEC work permits are granted using a system of random draws. Not all foreigners who indicate interest in the programme will be chosen. Success probabilities are based on the allocation for every programme and nation.

Each programme has its own specifications and may lead to a certain kind of work authorization:

Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP) Canada

canada work permit
source: istockphotos

While they wait for the outcome of their application for permanent residency, foreign people can continue to work in Canada with the help of the Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP).

Foreign nationals who are already employed in Canada can maintain their position whilst waiting for a result on their application for permanent residency by using the Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP). Only individuals who have applied for permanent residency and already hold a valid work permit are eligible for the BOWP. An open work permit is issued to the bearer of a successful BOWP application, allowing them to work for various businesses in various areas of their choice.

Eligibility for bridging open work permit

The following prerequisites must be satisfied before a foreign national may apply for a Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP):

Hope this article has helped you understand the different types of Canada work permit? If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments section or create a gist in the gist category and let us join in the conversation. 

Also, I will be posting a new article on how to apply for these Work Permits next week. Let’s be informed! 

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