Canada is a great place to live and work, so it makes sense that many people hope to become a foreign worker here. If you’re looking to immigrate to the Great White Way, you’ll need to obtain a work permit and a Labour Market Impact Assessment. Here’s everything you need to know about that process.
A Canadian business owner has to jump through a few hoops to hire you
If you’re hoping to become a Canadian employee, there are a few steps you and the company will have to take. You’ll need to obtain a work permit, which is issued by Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). There are two types of permits: regular work permit and open work permit.
A regular permit is specific to the employer, which means you won’t be able to use that permit to work for anyone else during your time in the country. An open permit is not specific and allows a worker to be hired by any employers who are not listed as ineligible. Only certain employees are eligible for an open work permit, including spouses applying for permanent residency and those considered to be in the class of Federal Skilled Worker.
After you receive a job offer from a Canadian employer, the employer will pay a fee and start the LMIA process which is important for securing your work permit. The LMIA, or Labour Market Impact Assessment, is filed with Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)/Service Canada and proves that a company can hire a foreign employee.
In Canada, businesses are required to prove that they’ve made every attempt to hire Canadian employees before hiring non-Canadians. The country has an extremely low unemployment rate, no doubt because they have to try to hire a Canadian first. The LMIA helps prove that the business has done what they could to hire a national and now it makes sense to hire a foreign employee. They will have to show ESDC that they adequately advertised the position, that the salary and working conditions are acceptable, and that they interview applicants who did not meet the position’s qualifications. The ESDC will also consider whether hiring a temporary foreign worker will help create more jobs.
LMIA is an important step in hiring foreign workers
The LMIA process is lengthy and complicated. Without the help of professionals, a company might make a mistake or provide improper documentation. This might lead to a negative LMIA, which can harm the business’s chances of success in the future. In order to obtain a work permit, the company will have to submit this LMIA, but the time it takes to receive the results can vary — anywhere from a few weeks to a few months.
Ultimately, a positive LMIA may not even result in the issuance of a work permit. IRCC (Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada) makes the final decision on permits and even though you may have received a positive LMIA, IRCC may decide not to provide a permit. There are certain jobs that do not need an LMIA and ones that can be processed more quickly than others. Professional immigration consultants can help you understand the current job market and what you’ll need to do to receive a work permit. They can determine the right path for you and the business looking to hire you, as well as how to become a permanent resident if that’s your goal.
Immigration to Canada is on the rise and it’s easy to see why. It’s a safe place to live, there are plenty of fantastic job opportunities, and public healthcare is free. If you’re hoping to immigrate to Canada for work, talk with an immigration consultant today to find out your next steps.