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    Canada work permit programs

    Canada work permits allow eligible foreign nationals to work in Canada on a temporary basis. For those who wish to work in Canada with a temporary work permit, the country offers many options in the form of Canada work permit programs. These options can be categorised into two broad programs, which are the Temporary Foreign Worker Program(TFWP) and the International Mobility Program(IMP). The basic difference between these two categories is that programs under TFWP require Labour Impact Assessment(LMIA), while those under IMP do not. Under most of the work permit programs, a job offer from a Canada employer is required to obtain a work permit. The validity period of work permit will also be different, ranging from days to years.

    Open Work Permits and Closed Work Permits

    Work permits are also classified into open work permits and closed work permits. Open work permits are those which allow the holders to undertake any work under any employer. At the same time, the holders of closed work permits could work only under one employer or one job.

    Now let’s explore the major categories of work permits that allow foreign nationals to work in Canada on a temporary basis:

    Canada Work Permit Programs that require LMIA

    LMIA is a document which proves that hiring a foreign worker does not adversely affect Canada’s labour market. Under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), obtaining a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment(LMIA) report is a must for issuing work permit to a foreign national. The LMIA is meant to prove to the Canadian government that hiring a foreign worker did not have any negative impact on Canada’s work force, like displacing the current workers or placing downward pressures on their wages. It is the employer issuing a job offer to a foreign national, who must apply for an LMIA. The foreign worker must submit the LMIA approval letter along with their application for work permit.

    The Employment and Social Development Canada(ESDC) is the authority that issues LMIA. If the ESDC issues a positive or neutral LMIA, it means they are satisfied that no Canadian citizen or permanent resident is available to do the job. At the same time, a negative LMIA means workers are already available in Canada for the particular position for which the employer is planning to hire a foreign national. An employer can hire a foreign worker only after obtaining a positive or neutral LMIA. Once a positive LMIA is issued, the foreign worker can approach the federal department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to get their work permit. After obtaining the work permit, they can begin to work under the employer in Canada.

    Applying for Temporary Work Permit

    A foreign worker must submit the application for temporary work permit along with an LMIA approval letter and job offer letter. Candidates applying from certain countries require a temporary residence visa (TRV) to travel to Canada. So they need to submit the application for work permit at the Canada visa office in their respective country. The Canadian temporary work permit will be issued to them at the point of entry when the worker arrives in Canada.

    LMIA-exempt Work Permits

    The work permit programs that come under the International Mobility Program(IMP) do not require LMIA. The IMP program aims to promote the broad economic, social and cultural interests of Canada. Because of this reason, foreign nationals who fall under this category are exempted from the LMIA process.

    Those who are eligible for LMIA-exempt work permits are as follows:

    Entrepreneurs/Self-employed person

    • Intra-company transferees
    • Spouses and children of Canadian work permit holders
    • French-speaking skilled workers
    • Academics including researchers, guest lecturers and visiting professors
    • Foreign workers who have been nominated by a province for permanent residence and have obtained a job offer

    Post-graduation Work Permit

    Post-graduation Work Permit (PGWP) allows international graduates to stay and work in Canada. With PGWP, they will be allowed to obtain Canada work experience with which they can apply for permanent residence in Canada. By issuing Post-graduation Work Permit, Canada government aims to retain talented international graduates in the country.

    Below are some facts about Canada PGWP:

    • The maximum validity period of PGWP is three years
    • The duration totally depends on the length of the Canada education program completed by the
    • To be eligible for PGWP, the candidate must have completed their education in Canadian Designated Learning Institution(DLI)
    • They must have completed the studies and obtained a degree, diploma or certificate
    • The candidate must have retained their full-time student status
    • They must also have obtained a transcript and an official letter from the DLI confirming that they have met all the requirements to complete the study program. They must include these documents along with the application for PGWP.

    Validity period of PGWP

    The validity period of the PGWP is between eight months to three years. It is determined based on the duration of the study program. For programs with less than two years duration, the validity will be the same length of the study. If the duration is more than two years, the validity will be three years.
    The candidate must have applied for PGWP within 180 days of obtaining transcript and official letter from the DLI.

    Canada PR for work permit holders

    You should note that the work permits are temporary in nature. It means they do not allow the holders to stay in Canada on a permanent basis. But once a foreign worker acquires a work permit, it will be easier for them to obtain permanent residence in Canada. Canadian work experience and Canadian study experience help the candidates earn some extra points while applying for Canada PR. Most of the federal immigration programs as well as the Provincial Nominee Programs give special consideration for such candidates. Some PNP programs even have exclusive pathways for those candidates who have work experience in Canada.

    Are you interested to know more about living and working in Canada? Experts at CanApprove can help you find the right pathway for moving to Canada. Connect with CanApprove now!


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      Frequently Asked Questions

      Do I need a job offer to get a Canada PR?

      A job offer is optional to receive an invitation and get a Canada Permanent Residence. However, a valid job offer from a Canadian employer or a nomination from a province will increase the CRS points and can help you receive an ITA quickly.

      Can I update my express entry profile after creating it?

      Yes. You can update your Express Entry profile now and then, adding new educational qualifications, improved language scores, or increased work experience, which would increase your chances of receiving an ITA.

      Is there any specific time during the year of creating an Express Entry profile?

      No! You can submit your profile under the Express Entry Program at any time of the year.

      Is the Canada PR requirements for Indians different from others?

      No. The requirements for applying for a PR is same for all and it doesn’t differ for countries.



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