Work Permit

Apply for a Work Permit

In most cases, foreign nationals cannot work in Canada without first getting a work permit. A work permit is a document issued by Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) that shows you have met the requirements to legally work in Canada. Work permits are normally issued for a one or two-year duration.

There are 2 types of work permits:

1.An employer-specific work permit lets you work in Canada for a specific employer at a specific location. In order to apply for an employer-specific work permit the employer who wants to hire you must obtain a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), or provide you with an offer of employment number if your job is LMIA exempt.

2.An open work permit lets you work for any employer in Canada, except for one that is listed as ineligible. You can only get an open work permit in specific situations such as:

The Post-Graduation Work Permit Program if you are an international student who has graduated from an 8 month or longer study program at a public college or university

A Bridging Work Permit if you or your spouse have already applied for permanent residence in Canada and you need to extend your existing work permit while your permanent resident application is being processed

A Spousal Work Permit if you are the spouse or common-law partner of a skilled worker or international student


Below are some of the general requirements for obtaining a work permit that most applicants must meet. You must:

have a valid passport

You have a job offer and LMIA or offer of employment number (employer specific work permit)

You meet the requirements of an open work permit (open work permit)

prove that you have enough money to take care of yourself and your dependents while you are in Canada

be in good health and not be medically inadmissible to Canada

have no criminal offenses that would render you criminally inadmissible to Canada

have no serious immigration-related convictions such as a deportation that would ban you from Canada

convince an immigration officer that you have sufficient ties to your home country such as a job, home, financial assets or family.

convince the visa officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your work permit

demonstrate that the intended purpose of your visit to Canada is to work and that you’re a bonafideworker

give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics) after you apply

Where to Apply

1.An Outside of Canada: Normally, anyone can apply outside of Canada as long as they are resident in the country they are applying from.

2.An Inside of Canada: You can only apply in Canada if:

you have a valid study or work permit

your spouse, common-law partner or parents have a valid study or work permit

you are eligible to apply for a Post Graduation Work Permit

you have a temporary resident permit that is valid for six months or more

you have applied for permanent residence from within Canada and are waiting on a decision

you’re a trader, investor, intra-company transferee or professional under NAFTA

3.You can apply for a work permit when you enter Canada if:

You don’t need a visitor visa to enter Canada, and

You’re applying for an open work permit, or

Your employer has already obtained an LMIA or offer of employment number for your employer-specific work permit

IRCC Application Fees

The cost to apply for a work permit is $155. If you are applying for an open work permit an additional fee of $155 will apply.
To restore your status as a worker you will have to pay a fee of $200 to restore your status plus a work permit application fee of $100

Other Expenses

If you are required to provide biometrics a fee of $85 CAD per person will also apply. In most cases you will be required to undergo an immigration medical exam at your own cost. The fee for this varies from country to country.

How can a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant Help?

In addition to making sure the application is complete there are three main areas where an RCIC can help.

Immigration Strategy and Option: An RCIC can advise you on the different visa options that are available to you and explain the pros and cons of each option

Professional Representation: If you do not have a representative assisting you then you will probably only submit the minimum required documentation. Submitting only those documents sometimes is not enough to make your case and to satisfy the program officer or visa officer you meet the requirements of the visa. Generally, it is wise to submit as much evidence as you can above and beyond the minimum required. Your representative can assist you in preparing and submitting a strong application by identifying the weaknesses in your application and advising you how to strengthen your application.

Submission letter: An RCIC will prepare and submit a submission letter on behalf of the applicant along with the application. The submission letter is an important part of the application which summarizes and more importantly demonstrates why you meet the requirements of the visa.

We will:

Review your information and develop a strategy to apply

Prepare and submit your visa application to IRCC

Act as your authorized representative to IRCC

Update you regularly on the status of your application.

If you want to apply for a work permit to Canada we are here to help! Please complete our free assessment form or contact us and one of our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants will revert to you within 48 hours. We can also help with work permit extensions.

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