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Work Permit is a visa that’s issued by government of Canada that allows a foreigner to legally work in Canada. Interested individuals can apply for work permit based on their eligibility and need. It is highly recommended to consult with a reliable 3rd party representative such as Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) or Immigration Lawyer before proceeding. 

The work permits below are the most common application. 

  1. LMIA-based (Employer Specific) Work Permit: An individual must have a LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment) from the employer and use this to apply for LMIA-based work permit. If the LMIA offered by the employer is Regular LMIA, then the foreign worker can get a 1-year work permit. If the LMIA is PR Support LMIA, then the foreign worker is eligible for 2-years work permit. As the name suggests, the foreign worker must work for the particular employer that have sponsored their LMIA, and cannot legally work anywhere else. 
  2. Spousal Open Work Permit: If an applicant has a spouse who is Canadian, Permanent Resident, or have a valid work permit or study permit in Canada, then he/she is eligible to apply for a spousal open work permit. The duration of their work permit will depend on the sponsor’s situation. For example, if a Canadian or Permanent Resident sponsors the spouse, then the applicant can first get a 2-year open work permit. If it’s a spouse who has a valid work permit or study permit sponsors the applicant, then he/she is eligible to get a work permit that expires on the same day as the sponsor. The spouse in this case refers to a married couple or a common-law partner in most cases. The foreign worker who receives this work permit are allowed to work anywhere in Canada. 
  3. Bridging Open Work Permit: A foreign worker who has received Acknowledgement of Receipt from Centralized Intake Office or Express Entry PR application file number can apply for this work permit. Upon success of the application, they will get a 1-year open work permit, but they must reside and work in the province while they are waiting for the permanent residence. 
  4. Post Graduate Open Work Permit: This work permit is specifically for international students who have graduated from a designated post-secondary institution in Canada. Depending on their study programs, they are eligible to get 8 months to 2 years open work permit that is valid for up to the same length as your study program, or 3-years open work permit (If your program was 2 years or more). The student who successfully acquires this work permit can work anywhere in Canada. 

There are also provincial nominee based work permit, International Experience Canada (working holiday), Francophone work permit, International Mobility Program: Canadian interests – significant economic benefit – Intra-company transferees [R205(a)] (exemption code C12), etc.

Each of the work permits above has different eligibility requirements, fees, and procedures. 


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