Everything You Need to Know About the Canadian Work Permit

If you want to live and work in Canada, you need to obtain a Canadian work permit. Sounds easy, right? Well, maybe, maybe not; it all depends on how you do it.

There are several different types of work permits, and their eligibility criteria for each may vary. The fees, the processing time, and the documentation too. Understanding that is necessary to identify the ideal Canada Visa for work permit to apply.

If you are reading this article, you are in the right place because here you’ll find everything you need to know.

What is a Canadian Work Permit?

A Canadian work permit is a document issued by the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada). The IRCC is a sector of the Canadian government under the TFWP (Temporary Foreign Worker Program).

The document provides the legal means for foreigners to work and obtain permanent residence in Canada. It also lays out certain working conditions for the workers, including:

  • Nature of work
  • Work location
  • The employer
  • Work duration

Here are the types of work permits in Canada:

The Employer-Specific Work Permit (ESWP)

The ESWP provides the legal means for an international worker to work for a particular employer for a specified duration. Certain specific details are necessary to qualify for this category. These include:

  • Name of your employer
  • Duration of work
  • Location of the job

The ESWP is subject to the LMIA (Labor Market Impact Assessment) and a job invitation by a Canadian employer.

The Open Work Permit (OWP)

An OWP is a work permit that has no job limitations. It allows you to work for any employer anywhere in Canada. Applicants under this category do not need LMIA or a job invitation letter from the employer.

OWP applicants can submit their applications form:

  • Outside Canada
  • When entering Canada
  • When they get to Canada

Anyone can apply for the OWP, but with the following conditions:

  • Proof of funds
  • No criminal record
  • Proof of good health
  • Must display a willingness to respect the conditions of the work permit
  • Must meet the eligibility criteria such as biometric data, insurance, language proficiency, etc.

Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)

A PGWP is a work permit that allows international students to apply after graduating from a recognized college or university in Canada. The validity of the work permit will vary depending on the span of the educational program. But, the maximum duration is 3 Years.

A PGWP for one year/12 months educational program is only valid for the same amount of time, 1 Year/12 months. But the maximum validity remains 3 Years for educational programs going for 2, 3, and even more years.

The validity period for the PGWP cannot be longer than the span of the educational program. Students must submit their applications within 180 days of graduating and receiving their transcripts.

  • Temporary Work Permits for spouses
  • Bridging OWP
  • World Youth Program Permit
  • Temporary Resident Permit
  • Regular Open Work Permit
  • Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program Spousal Permit

General Eligibility Criteria For Canadian Work Permit

The following are the requirements for all Canadian Work Permit applications:

  • Must provide proof of departure from Canada after the work permit expires
  • Must provide a police clearance certificate
  • Must be in good health
  • Must provide proof of funds
  • Must be working with an eligible employer, not otherwise
  • Must not be a threat to the Canadian security
  • Must not work with employer offering services, such as erotic massages, striptease, escort services, or exotic dancing.
  • Must be willing to provide any additional documents when required.

The Documentation

Below are the documents you’ll need to apply for securing a Canada Visa for a work permit:

  • Valid passport
  • Marriage certificate (where applicable)
  • Proof of payment of processing fees as per requirements
  • Educational qualifications
  • Job invitation letter from a Canadian employer
  • Medical certificate
  • Birth certificate
  • Bank statements with required funds
  • Work experience related information
  • And any other relevant document

If you are in Canada at the time of the application, you must:

  • Have a valid Canadian student visa or study permit
  • Have a pending PR application
  • A graduate of the Canadian college, university, or any other eligible educational institutions
  • Planning to request refugee protection
  • Your common-law partner or spouse should have a valid study permit (where applicable)

If you are at the POE (Port of Entry) at the time of application, you must:

  • Not need a visitor visa to enter Canada
  • Applying for an OWP
  • Have steps to be completed by your employer for ESWP

The Processing Time for Canadian Work Permit

If there is one thing that’s hard to predict about the Canadian work permit is the processing time. It can be as fast as 1 Week and as long as 27 weeks/7 months or even more. It will depend on factors, such as how quickly you complete your application, your location, your agency, and many more.

It is always advisable to start your application ASAP. You might also want to consider hiring a professional for a stress-free application process.

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Written by Maya Kashyap

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