Corporate Services – Work Permit / LMIA

This program or services is applicable for Employers or Corporates who would be interested in hiring foreign workers on a temporary basis. Below are some options that you might be looking

for information on. If you need more information or simply not sure of the right approach, we can help you decide which one is suitable for your organization’s needs.

LMIA Based Work Permit

A Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a document issued by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) for employers to fill labor market needs and hire foreign workers. Prior to submitting a LMIA work permit application, there are certain requirements that must be met by an Employer including but not limited to, advertise to fill the role locally. Once LMIA application is approved and a positivity letter is issued by ESDC, foreign worker must submit with their application for a work permit.

Owner/Operator LMIA

When applying for an Owner/Operator LMIA, there is no requirement for advertising or recruitment. However, this option is available anywhere in Canada. The validity of a positive LMIA is up to 2 years and IRCC issues a work permit for 2 years. Once foreign national obtains the visa and arrives in Canada, this becomes a path to permanent residence through the Express Entry System.

To be eligible for owner/operator LMIA, a foreign national must demonstrate that they:

  • Have a highest level of interest in the business.
  • Posses most senior position and are active in the management of the business.
  • Have a solid business plan.
  • Plan to employ at least one Canadian or permanent resident.

Global Talent Stream LMIA

The Global Talent Stream (GTS) LMIA program is a two-year pilot program which falls under the Temporary Foreign Worker category. The GTS Pilot is an important part of the Innovation and Skills Plan whose principal objective is to make Canada a world-leading center for innovation. The main characteristic of this program is the Labor Market Benefits Plan to detail the specific benefits for the Canadian Labor market and the Canadian economy, and employers must provide activities and targets for each benefit. They must also commit to job creation and investment in skills and training, benefiting and transferring knowledge to Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Unlike LMIA, there are no advertising requirement and no transition plan for this stream, however, there is a mandatory progress review on the employer’s progress on their commitments made in the Labor Market Benefits Plan.

LMIA Based Work Permit under PNPs

LMIA based work permits, under certain regulations and criteria, can also be applied under Provincial Nominee Programs (PP). PNP facilitate the entry or stay in Canada of many categories of professionals who otherwise might not qualify under the Express Entry System.

Contact us to find out more details and available options.

LMIA Exempt Work Permit

Certain sections (R204, R205, R206, R207, R208) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) provide the IRCC with the regulatory authority to issue a work permit for temporary positions that do not require a Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and employers can avoid the lengthy and complex LMIA process. However, LMIA exemptions apply to the following types of Work permits:

  • For a start-up visa entrepreneur if they do not intend to immigrate to Canada,
  • For the key personnel for the new start-up visa office,
  • For employees of international Organizations with divisions in Canada, Canada’s International Agreements and Non-trade-related agreements,
  • For after-sales service specialists (installation, repair or maintenance of industrial or commercial equipment).

Intra Company Transfer (ICT)

The first key element of an LMIA-exempt application is to establish the association between the Canadian organization and the parent company. To be eligible for the intra-company transfer to the Canadian office, the foreign national eligible must have been employed for a minimum of one year in the same position by the parent company. The transferred personnel have the option to be joined by their family members for the period they will work in Canada.

Start-Up Intra-Company Transfer Work Permits

Before making the LMIA-exempt work permit application, the Canadian employer must register or incorporate in Canada, so the qualifying company relationship between the entities is established.

International Experience Canada (IEC) Work Permit

A work permit under this category is meant for youth between 18 and 35 years from a country of citizenship that has an agreement with Canada that allows applying for an IEC work permit. There are three categories, but not all three are applicable to all countries: working holiday, young professionals and international Co-op internship. The working holiday category provides an open work permit, while the young professionals and the international Co-op internship provide employer-specific work permits. It is important to keep updated, as the eligibility requirements for countries and categories are continuously changing.