In only very limited circumstances are non-Canadians allowed to work in Canada without first obtaining a work permit. Many “business visitors” for example, can enter Canada for short periods and conduct business without first obtaining a work permit. Work permits can be broken into several general categories such as “open work permits”, “Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) – Exempt work permits”, and work permits that require LMIAs.
Open Work Permits
Open work permits are those that allow the applicant to work for almost any Canadian employer. They are issued to such people as:
- spouses of people who hold student permits;
- spouses of people who are working under a work permit in a high skill level occupation;
- some sponsorees under a “Spouse or Common-Law Partner Class Application”;
- young people applying under a student exchange program such as “International Experience Canada”, or;
- graduates of a Canadian college diploma or university degree (post graduate work permits).
Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIA) and LMIA-Exempt Work Permits
A Labour Market Impact Assessment is a permit given to a Canadian employer which has satisfied Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) that hiring a non-Canadian will not take jobs away from Canadians. This process involves an extensive period of advertising in Canada for a Canadian to fill the job.
Some foreign workers, however, do not need to first be given a LMIA before they may apply for a work permit. Even if no LMIA is required, a Canadian employer still needs to first electronically register the job offer with Immigration before a work permit may be issued.
We have over 50 years of experience in representing clients from over 70 countries. We have an excellent reputation at the Board, and are certified as Immigration Specialists by The Law Society of Upper Canada. Our success is as a result of thorough preparation for each case