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A work permit is necessary for foreign nationals wishing to engage in most types of employment within Canada. Temporary workers are also expected to meet all necessary requirements for visitors to Canada such as obtaining a visa if necessary, and satisfying an officer that you will return to your country of nationality upon the completion of the work period. In order to obtain a work permit, a job offer from a qualifying Canadian business is necessary. The prospective employer will apply to HRSDC for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) which will confirm the need for this type of employment in Canada. An application is submitted along with the company’s necessary financial information.

Once approved, an application for the work permit itself can be submitted by the foreign national. The work permit will be valid for a certain period of time, likely one year, after which it can be renewed, an application for permanent residence can be made, or you will return to your country of nationality. Often, if approved, your spouse will also be able to receive an open work permit to engage in employment while the family is here in Canada. It is also important to note that there are certain professions that are exempt from this process and can still engage in employment in Canada. Religious workers are the most notable.