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Canadian Work Permit and Visa Process

Immigration Pros Helps Foreign Workers With their Work Permit Applications and Extensions

Over 15 years of experience assisting Canadian employers and foreign workers with their immigration processes

High success rate in work permit applications and extensions

Our team of professionals is ready to assist you with your LMIA needs.

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More than 16 years of experience

More than 16 years of experience

Our consultants are licensed by CICC

Our consultants are licensed by CICC in all provinces

Dedicated quality assurance team

Dedicated quality assurance team

Hundreds of successful cases per year

Hundreds of successful cases per year

Services available in English, Spanish and French

Services available in English, Spanish and French

Specialty in LMIAs

Specialty in LMIAs, work permits and family sponsorships

What is a Canadian Work Permit?

A Canadian work permit is a temporary authorisation granted to foreign nationals to allow them to work in Canada. Typically, applicants need to have a valid job offer from an employer who has received an LMIA before applying for a work permit. Our sister company, workvantage, assists employers and employees with hiring from abroad.

Work Permit Eligibility

Some eligibility criteria apply. To obtain a work permit, the employee must:

Prove to the government that they intend to leave Canada once the permit expires.

Prove that they have enough money to support themselves and any dependents that may accompany them during their stay. They must also prove that they have the funds to return home once the permit expires.

Obey the law and have no criminal record abroad. The government may ask for a police clearance certificate from the applicant’s home country.

Not be a danger to Canada’s national security.

Be proven to be in good health and willing to take a medical exam if needed.

Be planning to work for an employer who is eligible to hire foreign workers and who complies with the conditions.

Not be planning to work for an employer who, on a regular basis, offers striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages; and

Provide any additional documents required by immigration officials if needed

Canadian Work Permit

Work Permit Requirements

In order to successfully apply for the work permit, a candidate will need to complete the correct application for their situation. If the applicant is outside of Canada, their application will vary based on the country or territory they are applying from. In any case, an applicant will need:

To complete the application process and submit the application.

In most cases, to have a valid job offer from an employer who has an LMIA.

Proof of status in Canada if applying as an inland applicant

To provide biometric information to the government if necessary

To undergo a medical exam if necessary


Obtaining a Work Permit

A work permit may be provided to a foreign individual who has applied for their permit after receiving a valid job offer from an employer who is authorized to hire foreign workers by the government of Canada.

Before applying for a work permit, the employer must complete a set of steps which may vary according to the province, type of work and the employee’s country of origin.

In order for an employee to begin the process of obtaining a work permit, an employer must first:

Provide the prospective employee with a valid job offer

Obtain a positive LMIA, if necessary

Pay employer compliance fees, if hiring through the International Mobility Program (IMP)

Immigration Pros Helps Foreign Workers With their Work Permit Applications

Types of Canadian Work Permits

There are various streams through which to hire foreign workers, all of which ultimately have the purpose of granting a work permit. The types of work permits available change depending on the nature of employment, National Occupation Classification (NOC), level of studies and even the province of the job site.

Oftentimes, employers need to obtain a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment before their employees can begin the process to obtain a work permit. Find out if you need an LMIA.

Open Work Permits

An open work permit is non job-specific, meaning the candidates will not need an LMIA or a job offer from an employer. Open work permits are typically issued to:


Permanent residence applicants

Dependants and family members of permanent resident applicants

Refugees, refugee claimants, protected persons, and their family members.

Temporary resident permit holders.

Young workers participating in certain programs

Spouses or partners of skilled workers, international students, or applicants of the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program.

Employees who already have a job specific work permit but who are being abused or are at risk of being abused in their current workplace.

Please note that the conditions of a work permit will vary depending on the program through which the employee was hired.

In order to find out more about each work permit, take a look at the pages linked below, where you will find detailed information about each program to see if you qualify.

LMIA-Exempt Work Permit

Some employers and professions are LMIA exempt, here is a brief list:

International Agreements - Under some international agreements, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), foreign nationals may work in Canada without their employers needing an LMIA.

Intra-Company Transferees - Companies may transfer qualified workers to Canada without needing an LMIA.

Entrepreneurs/Self-Employed Candidates

International Exchange Programs

Dependents Of Foreign Workers

Religious Workers

Academic professionals

Open work permits (see below)

Some other exceptions apply depending on the province of the employer.

How to Apply for a Canadian Work Permit

The first step to applying for a work permit is to determine which permit you will need. Once you’ve received a job offer from an eligible employer in Canada, you will need to fill out the necessary application for yourself and any dependents if applicable. You will then need to submit the necessary documents which will include:


Travel history

Requested background documentation

Any documentation regarding your spouse such as marriage certificate, passport (if applicable) and other proof of relationship.

Criminal background checks if necessary

Applicable fees

Once the application is submitted, you will receive a response from the government in around 30 business days. Applications submitted from outside of Canada will be processed differently and the time will vary depending on the country. You can check approximately how long it will take here.

Work Permit

Canadian Work Permit Cost

The fee associated with a standard work permit is around $155. If an applicant wishes to restore their status they will need to pay $200 and an additional $155 for a new work permit. If applying with a spouse, partner, or dependant, additional fees may apply. An open work permit will cost an additional $100 as a holding fee on top of the $155. Additional fees may also be incurred if the government needs to collect biometrics.+

Extending a Canadian Work Permit

In order to extend a Canadian work permit, the applicant must submit the application at least 30 days before the current permit expires. The approximate processing time for a work permit application is around 150 days, in the meantime while the application is being processed, the candidate is allowed to remain in Canada. The application can easily be submitted both online and on paper.

Application Process

Work Permit Application Processing Time

Processing times will vary depending on the type of application being submitted. The time will also vary based on the country the applicant is applying from. To check processing times, visit the government website here. An inland application will take around 150 days to process. Some categories of applications are guaranteed to be processed within 2 weeks, these include:

All applications for the highest-demand occupations (skilled trades), or

Highest-paid (top 10%) occupations, or

Short-duration work periods (120 days or less).

Work permit in Quebec

Under the Quebec Pilot Project, employees can be easily hired through the temporary foreign worker program. Essentially, some occupations are exempt from advertising and recruitment requirements for the LMIA, making hiring foreign workers easier and faster.
Furthermore, If a foreign national has not applied for permanent residence in Canada, they may be eligible for an LMIA exempt, employer-specific work permit application, in this case the Certificat d’acceptation du Québec (CAQ – Québec Acceptation Certificate).

Work permit

About the Process



Call or fill out our contact form for a free assessment. Our team of professionals will evaluate your case and provide you with professional feedback on your chances of success along with a quote.


Strategy Creation

Our team of professionals will work with you to create a tailor-made strategy that is likely to result in a successful Work Permit application.


Case Revision

We will review your supporting documents thoroughly and work towards building a strong case.



In order to make this an easy and stress-free process, we will handle all communication with the government on your behalf while we await for a decision, keeping you informed every step of the way.



Once a decision has been made, our team will advise you on the next necessary steps to prepare for your arrival to Canada.

Let the Pros take care of your application

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Immigration Pros and your Work Permit Application

Immigration Pros is a group of immigration consultants who specialize in preparing LMIAs, work permits and family sponsorships.

As work permit processing is within our line of specialties, we take special care to create an application that will likely result in a successful application, resulting in a process that is as easy, successful and stress-free as can be.

Our team of immigration experts will take care of the entire application process and act as a liaison between you and the government, keeping you informed about updates regarding the work permit process.

Immigrationpros consultant
Foreign Worker Canada

Addressing Labour Shortages in Canada

Many streams are available to allow employers to address labour shortages with foreign workers.

Every province offers different programs that allow employers to facilitate work permits with the purpose of tackling labour shortages where hiring a Canadian workforce has not been possible.

To learn more about different work programs available for employers to hire

foreign workers, take a look at the programs listed below:

Global Talent Stream


Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP)

International Mobility Program (IMP)

Keep in mind that some of these foreign worker employment programs require an LMIA. Find out if you need one.

Service fees for this process:
$1,090 – $4,000


Yes! Unless the employer is not allowed to hire foreign workers you are most likely eligible to apply for a work permit. In most cases, your employer will need to obtain a positive LMIA before you can receive a work permit.

A job-specific work permit allows you to work in the job you applied for your work permit through. An open work permit allows you to work for any employer anywhere in the country until it expires.

To check on the status of your application, go to the online application portal, sign in, go to ‘view my submitted applications’ click on ‘check status and messages’.

You can apply to extend your work permit, the application must be submitted at least 30 days before your current permit expires and you may stay in Canada while it is being processed.

Visas are issued by immigration officers in the Canadian visa office that processes the applications. The office that issues the visais not always in the country where applicant resides in. Work permits are issued at a port of entry into Canada (airport, seaport, land border) by immigration authorities upon entry

The most common reasons for refusal are that the candidate did not sufficiently prove that they will leave the country once their permit expires whether that be based on travel history, immigration status, or family ties in Canada.

This will depend on the personal circumstances of the applicant and the quality of the application.

You will be able to do this in the application portal as a dependent or partner. You could also apply for an open work permit for your partner or spouse.