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May 12, 2020 – Ottawa has launched a new process to allow temporary workers in Canada to get working again quickly. Many temporary workers with employer-specific work permits have lost their jobs due to COVID-19. Also, many sectors with ongoing labour needs are providing critical goods and services to Canada, and need to ensure key positions are filled.

In response, the government announced a new temporary policy that reduces the time taken for a temporary foreign worker to start a new job. Workers in Canada who have secured a new job offer that is typically supported by a labour market impact assessment (LMIA) can be approved to work in their new job, even before the application is fully processed.

Eligible workers

Workers must be in Canada with a valid work permit. The work permit must be employer-specific or else the worker must be work-permit exempt. To change one’s employer, a worker must submit an application for the new work permit with a job offer either under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or the International Mobility Program.

One must submit a separate request to IRCC to receive authorization by email to begin working in the new job. IRCC estimates an email will be received in approximately 10 days, and slightly longer if the application was submitted on paper instead of online.

If you would like assistance with your new application, you may email our law firm at

Migrant farm workers in strawberry fields. (Mark Miller/Getty Images)

Employers must continue to have or obtain a valid positive LMIA from ESDC when hiring a temporary foreign workers. For employer-specific but LMIA-exempt positions, an employer must submit an offer of employment through the International Mobility Program Employer Portal.



Author Monique

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