Work in Canada

Every year, tens of thousands of newcomers create new economic opportunities for themselves and for Canada by joining this country’s labour force. Many come to stay in Canada permanently (as permanent residents) through Canada’s immigration programs for skilled workers, or through the Provincial Nominee Program operated by many of Canada’s provinces and territories. Other newcomers come to Canada to work temporarily under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.

A Work Permit is a document issued by CIC that authorizes a person to work legally in Canada. It sets out different conditions for the worker relating to his new employment.

If you want to come to Canada to work temporarily, you need to follow the steps below:

Step 1: Your Employer applies for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (If required)

Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a document from the Government of Canada that gives a Canadian employer permission to hire a foreign worker.

A LMIA assesses the likely impact that hiring a temporary foreign worker (TFW) will have on the Canadian labour market and is required in some cases to complete a work permit application. Not all TFWs require an LMO to obtain a work permit.

Cases where a LMIA may not be required are the following:

Cases where LMIA may not be required >
  • Workers covered under international agreements
    This group can includes professionals, traders and investors.
  • People taking part in exchange programs
    These programs can include youth exchange programs, teacher exchange programs and other joint programs.
  • Spouses or common-law partners
    This group can include:

    • spouses and common-law partners of certain foreign students who are studying full time (the spouse must not be enrolled in full-time studies) and
    • spouses and common-law partners of certain skilled foreign workers.
  • Workers, their spouses/common-law partners or their dependant children who are eligible for a work permit through a pilot project
    Pilot projects are agreements between the Government of Canada and provincial/territorial governments. Please consult us for currently active pilot projects.
  • Workers nominated by a province for permanent residence
    The person must have a job offer from an employer based in that province.
  • Entrepreneurs and workers transferred within a company
    This includes workers who will greatly benefit Canadians or permanent residents by working in Canada.
  • Academics
    This includes researchers, guest lecturers, visiting professors and others.
  • Co-op students
    These are international students studying in Canada and doing co-op work placements or internships as part of their study program.
  • Religious workers
    These are people doing charitable or religious work.
  • Others
    These are other people who need to support themselves while they are in Canada, such as those waiting on a refugee claim.

Step 2: Your Employer provides a Job Offer

After successfully obtaining a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), the Canadian employer needs to provide a temporary job offer to the prospective foreign worker.

The employer needs to create a formal Job Offer letter subject to all Provincial Labour and Employment Legislation.

Formal Job Offer letter must include >

Canadian employers are required by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and Service Canada to prepare a formal employment contract or a Job Offer letter for future employees, which must include:


  • Job title for the position being offered.
  • Job description, including main duties and responsibilities.
  • Requirements for the position – a list of necessary professional credentials, education, skills, experience, and licenses, as required.
  • Details about start and end dates (if applicable) of the position.
  • Specifics about the salary you are offering – both wages and other forms of payment.
  • The name and address of the employer, the address of the employee’s future place of work, and the details of a contact person at the Canadian company who is familiar with the job offer.

Step 3: Apply for a Work Permit

You can apply for a work permit from outside Canada, as you enter Canada or from inside Canada. The application process and its processing time will depend on the kind of work you will do when you come to Canada. If the Canadian employer that is hiring is in the province of Quebec, the foreign skilled worker may also need to obtain a Certificat d’acceptation du Québec (CAQ) in order to work temporarily in Quebec. There are a number of different ways to secure a Work Permit. Depending on one’s nationality, occupation, and intended work in Canada, there may be possibilities for expediting the process.

Click on Start Application for a personalized assessment of your eligibility to apply for a Work Permit.

We provide assistance and can take over the entire Work Permit process for both the Canadian employers and foreign workers.

Are you a Canadian employer who needs to obtain Work Permits for new employees?

If you are a Canadian employer having trouble finding Canadian employees to staff your business, the Temporary Foreign Worker may provide a solution to fulfill your immediate worker shortages.

You can decide to hire foreign workers on either a temporary or permanent basis.

Temporary workers – If you are looking to hire foreign workers temporarily, we can assist your future employees to obtain Temporary Work Permits.

Permanent workers – If you are looking to hire foreign workers for full-time permanent positions, your future employees will need to complete the Canadian Immigration process in order to gain permanent residency. There are several fast-track options to choose from depending upon the nature, salary and location of work.

We can also assist your current temporary foreign workers to obtain permanent residency if you would like to offer them full-time permanent employment.

Contact us for more information about hiring temporary foreign workers for your company.

For Workers

Let us help you in your application for a Work Permit.

Begin Application

Start your work permit application.


For Employers

Let us help you fulfill your recruitment goals

International students applying for Post Graduate Open Work Permit

If you are an international student who has completed his/her studies in an eligible educational program at an eligible Canadian post-secondary institution, you are eligible to apply for a Post Graduation Work Permit.

Under the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program, international graduates can now obtain a three year open work permit, allowing them to work for any Canadian employer in any industry. A Canadian job offer is not required for the Post Graduation Work Permit.

To be eligible in this program, you must meet the following requirements:

Requirements for the Post Graduation Work Permit
  • You must have studied full time in Canada and you must have completed a program of study that lasted at least eight months.
  • In addition, you must have graduated from:
    • a public post-secondary institution, such as a college, trade/technical school, university or CEGEP (in Quebec), or
    • a private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as public institutions, or
    • a private secondary or post-secondary institution (in Quebec) offering qualifying programs of 900 hours or longer leading to a diplôme d’études professionnelles (DEP) or an attestation de spécialisation professionnelle (ASP), or
    • a Canadian private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees but only if you are enrolled in one of the programs of study leading to a degree as authorized by the province and not in all programs of study offered by the private institution.
  • You must apply for a work permit within 90 days of receiving written confirmation (for example, a transcript or an official letter) from your institution indicating that you have met the requirements for completing your academic program.
  • You must have completed and passed the program of study and received a notification that you are eligible to obtain your degree, diploma or certificate.
  • You must have a valid study permit when you apply for the work permit.

The length of the Post Graduation Work Permit depends on the length of the program of study. You can obtain a work permit from eight months to three years depending on the criteria below:

Length of Post Graduation Work Permit
  • If the official length of your program of study is:
    • less than eight months
      • you are not eligible for this program
    • less than two years but more than eight months
      • you may get a work permit for a period no longer than the length of your program of study (for example, if you studied for nine months, a work permit may be issued for a period of nine months)
    • two years or more
      • a work permit may be issued for three years

Click on Start Application for a personalized assessment of your eligibility to apply for a Post Graduation Work Permit.

For International Students

Start your application for the Post Graduation Work Permit below:

Begin you Application

Start your study visa application.