Immigration for Workers & Employers

For Workers

Work permit applications and extension applications

Generally, foreign nationals need a Work Permit to work in Canada. If you want to work in Canada, we can help you determine the type of Work Permit that is most appropriate for your situation.

For employers, we can assist you with a quick review of the prospective employee’s background and the job offer, then give prompt advice on whether the employee can be mobilized to Canada. Our professional services will help you save time and opportunity costs.

International Mobility Program (IMP)

LMIA-Exempt Work Permits

In some situations, qualified foreign nationals may be eligible for a Work Permit without a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) through the International Mobility Program. Eligibility for LMIA-exempt Work Permits depends on various factors, including the job description, the employee’s nationality and qualifications, and the business structure of the employer. There are over 100 different types of LMIA-exempt categories for Work Permits all with their own specific eligibility requirements.
Most Work Permits issued under the IMP are Closed Work Permits, which means the foreign national may only work for the specific employer and occupation named on the Work Permit. Certain LMIA-exempt categories under the IMP result in Open Work Permits, which are not as restrictive as Closed Work Permits. Open Work Permit holders can generally work in any occupation for any employer, with certain restrictions.

Working without a Work Permit

Generally, foreign nationals need a Work Permit to work in Canada. In some cases, foreign nationals may be authorized to work in Canada without a Work Permit under the IMP, but usually only for a short period of time and under strict conditions.

LMIA Work Permit

If a foreign national needs a Work Permit and is not eligible for the International Mobility Program, the foreign national will need a job offer from an eligible employer who has obtained a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment. We will work with employers wishing to support their employees in their Canadian Work Permit applications with a Labour Market Impact Assessment application.

The LMIA Work Permit only allows the foreign national to work for a specific employer and occupation named on the Work Permit.

Applying for permanent residence as a skilled worker

Express Entry and the BC Provincial Nominee Program are two common routes to permanent residence as a skilled worker in Canada. We can help you comply with general and specific eligibility requirements for your category, and help you prepare supporting documents that comply with the program requirements.

Applying for permanent residence as a semi-skilled worker

For semi-skilled workers, options for permanent residence to Canada are more limited than those available to skilled workers. However, the Entry Level and Semi-Skilled category of the BC Provincial Nominee Program may be an option for workers in certain eligible occupations.

I look forward to helping you
Sarah Reid

My practice is focused on immigration and citizenship law. I have experience in a wide range of immigration matters, with numerous successful outcomes for my clients. I look forward to helping you with your Canadian immigration and citizenship questions.

Request a consultation

For Employers

Hire a temporary foreign worker

If you have a valuable employee who needs a Canadian work permit to continue working for you, there are several options to support your employees. Employers can submit a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application to demonstrate that there are no Canadian workers available to fill the job position. A positive LMIA will allow the employee to apply for an employer-specific and occupation-specific work permit. This means that the employee’s authorization to work in Canada is restricted to the specific occupation and to the specific employer that applied for the LMIA.

A successful LMIA application requires an understanding of the program requirements and the employer compliance regime that can be challenging to navigate without professional assistance. Please contact us for more details.

Support your employee for permanent residence

The key to permanent residence for many Temporary Foreign Workers in Canada is to gain Canadian work experience in a skilled occupation. An employer looking to build a long-term employment relationship with an employee may want to support the employee for permanent residence to Canada. With PR, both the employer and the employee can manage the risk of uncertainties that come with extending a work permit every couple of years. The cost of the immigration applications over time can add up. To determine how you can best support your employee, please contact us for a consultation.