Work permits are generally given to temporary workers, business people, students, and caregivers from the Live-In Caregiver Program. Work permits are an official document given by the Canadian government that allow individuals to live, study, and work in Canada while receiving the benefits of Canada’s strict labour laws as well as benefits. Work permits are temporary in nature but can always be extended within Canada. Work permits are also seen as a route to possibly becoming a permanent resident or Canadian citizen. To learn more, you can also read about Permanent Residency and LMIA.
Work Permit Extension
A work permit extension must be completed at least 30 days before your current work permit is about to expire. It is best to stay diligent when extending your work permit because you do not want to have to restore your work permit after it expires. If you accidentally forgot to renew your work permit before it expires, restoring your work permit would be the only option. In this case, you must stop working until you receive your new work permit. In addition, there is no guarantee that your work permit will be restored.
Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)
If you are a Canadian employer looking to hire a foreign worker, you must complete an application known as a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).
There are numerous factors that the government looks at which can contribute to a successful LMIA, these include:
- the effect that the worker would have on the labour market
- if the worker is taking jobs away from qualified Canadians
- if the worker will receive a fair salary and proper benefits.
Further factors that are looked at in the LMIA process are whether the employee would be classified as high-wage or low-wage (it is based on the provinces or territories earning median, high-wage is above and low-wage is below the median). In addition, in order to ensure the validity of an LMIA application, the government requires employers to provide evidence showing their attempts to hire local Canadian workers. This is done to give current Canadian residents and citizens the best chance to succeed.
At Legal Leaf, we are ready to guide you through the complicated process of bringing a foreign worker to Canada. We have helped many employers and companies successfully integrate their employees into the Canadian labour force.
Post Graduation Work Permit
The post-graduation work permit is given to individuals who have graduated from certain pre-approved post-secondary institutions. This permit is designed to give graduates the chance to gain valuable work experience in the Canadian labour force and economy. These types of work permits can also act as another gateway to potentially becoming a permanent resident and eventually a full Canadian citizen.
NAFTA Work Permit
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) work permits are given to American and Mexican citizens who are looking to temporarily work in Canada. There are approximately 60 targeted professions which the NAFTA work permit is used for. If you want to come to Canada on this type of work permit you must provide proof that you have a job offer in Canada under one of the targeted professions. Self-employed individuals are not permitted for this type of permit.
Bridging Open Work Permit
Bridging open work permit is a term used for individuals who currently have a work permit and are in their application process for permanent residency. To apply for a bridging open work permit you must:
- have applied for permanent residency
- have your current work permit expire in 4 months or less
- have a valid status on your work permit
- currently be in Canada
You must have applied to one of the following permanent residence programs to receive a bridging open work permit:
- Federal Skilled Worker Program
- Canadian Experience Class
- Federal Skilled Trades Program
- Provincial Nominee Program
- Caring for Children Class
- Caring for People with High Medical Needs Class
LMIA Exempt Work Permits
Under normal circumstances, an employer must complete a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to help a potential employee qualify for a work permit. However, for certain skilled jobs and certain scenarios, you can apply for an LMIA exempt work permit.
Here are a few of the exceptions which allow for LMIA Exempt work permits:
- International Agreements
- Intra-company transfers
- Humanitarian Reasons
- Mobilite Francophone
- Canadian Interests