Looking Back: Canadian Work Permits in 2020

 Each year, nearly 200,000 skilled foreign workers immigrate to Canada. This did not stop in 2020, even with COVID-19. Although these workers must find an employer and receive a job offer to obtain a temporary foreign work permit, if the worker is in an occupation that is deemed “essential”, such as Agricultural Workers, who were able to get expedited work permits and expedited permanent residence because they are in a labour shortage jobs. During COVID-19, the government of Canada made many accommodations for workers, such as exempting biometrics for essential workers, changing the advertising and recruitment requirements for essential occupations

The number of policy changes Canada made to welcome foreign workers was a vast contrast to that in the U.S., where the Trump Administration unveiled several executive orders that significantly restricted temporary work visa categories. These restrictions came under the guise that their purpose was to protect the jobs for Americans in the pandemic. Oddly enough, the bans into the U.S. started pre-pandemic.

In 2020, Canada welcomed nearly Every year there are more than 100,000 work permits issued by the Canadian government to temporary foreign workers. Depending on the type of work responsibilities, duration of the position, individual’s home country, and other such factors, the Canadian government offers different types of employment permits that can be obtained.

Canada will continue to bring in temporary foreign workers as it has been for years. Obtaining a work permit is a complicated process and involves several steps once you find an employer. You cannot enter Canada with just a job offer; you require a valid work permit and possibly a Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Obtaining a work permit in Canada requires that you submit an application to IRCC.  This can be a confusing process.  Contact NZH Consulting Inc at info@nzhconsultinginc.com.

Our experience can assist with filling out the applications, completing all necessary documentation submissions, and answer questions or concerns you may have.

LMIA Requirements for Canadian Employment

The LMIA process is to make sure that priority for employment opportunities is provided to Canadian citizens and permanent residents first. Once the employer can prove there are no qualified Canadians or PR’s,

Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) ensures that employers throughout Canada are complying with employment standards. This assessment is performed to ensure that there are no qualified Canadian citizens or permanent residents available to perform the job duties of the position before hiring a foreign worker.

LMIA Exempt Jobs

 In most cases, your employer needs a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to support your temporary job offer, but there are some jobs that do not need an LMIA.

Employer’s do not need an LMIA to support a job offer if:

  1. you have been working full-time for the employer on your work permit for at least 1 year (or an equal amount of part-time work)
  2. you have a valid job offerand
  3. you have a valid work permit that is exempt from an LMIA under:
    • an international agreement
    • a federal-provincial agreement
    • the “Canadian interests” category
    • Spouses and Common-Law Partners
    • Workers, Spouses, and Dependents eligible for a work permit through a Pilot Project, such as the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program, or the Caregiver Pilot Program
    • On-campus employment

The best part about working on a temporary work visa in Canada is the option to apply for permanent residency after you have worked for 1 year or more. Many countries do not offer this opportunity. For example, in the U.S., after you have worked as a temporary worker on an H-1B, you need an employer to sponsor you for a “green card”. In Canada, the worker can submit their own application through one of the Federal Express Entry programs.

If you need assistance on a potential job offer and planning your future in Canada, we encourage you to contact the Poonah Immigration Law Firm. Let our licensed Immigration Lawyer review your job-offer, employment contracts, or paperwork for you and we will respond to your questions.