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Temporary Residence and Visas

A temporary resident is a foreign national who is legally authorized to enter and or remain in Canada for temporary purposes. It gives person permission to visit, live, work or study in Canada with a time limit on their stay.

There are several temporary resident categories:

  • Temporary resident visas
  • Electronic travel authorizations
  • International students
  • Temporary workers
  • Temporary resident permits

In meeting the eligibility requirements for the temporary resident category under which they have applied, applicants will require either a visa or an electronic travel authorization (eTA).

Extension of temporary residence

A person may apply to extend their status as a temporary resident in Canada beyond the initial period granted. This includes accompanying family members, regardless of whether or not the principal applicant will be extending their status in Canada. It will be up to the officer to make the final decision after reviewing the circumstances.[spacer height=”20px”]

For assistance with a visa for any of the temporary residence categories, please contact us to arrange a consultation to discuss the eligibility requirements for your chosen program.

Work Permits

A Canadian work permit is the permission to take a job within Canada if you are from a foreign country. You usually need a work permit to work in Canada.

The requirements to apply for a work permit differ depending on if you apply from inside, outside or on entry to Canada. However in all situations the following general requirements apply:

  • prove to an officer that you will leave Canada when your work permit expires,
  • show that you have enough money to take care of yourself and your family members during your stay in Canada and to return home,
  • obey the law and have no record of criminal activity and not be a danger to Canada’s security,
  • be in good health and have a medical exam, if required.
  • not plan to work for an employer listed with the status “ineligible” on the list of employers who failed to comply with the conditions.
  • not plan to work for an employer who, on a regular basis, offers striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages

The two types of work permits available are open work permits and employer-specific work permits.

An open work permit allows you to work for any employer in Canada, except for an employer who is listed as ineligible on the list of employers who have failed to comply with the conditions, or who regularly offers striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages.

Open work permit only apply in specific situations. It is not job-specific. Because it is not job-specific, you will not need the following when you apply for your work permit:

  • a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from Employment and Social Development Canada; or
  • proof that an employer has submitted an offer of employment through the Employer Portal and paid the employer compliance fee.

An employer-specific work permit allows you to work according to the conditions on your work permit, which includes:

  • the name of the employer you can work for,
  • how long you can work, and
  • the location where you can work (if applicable).

To apply for a work permit, a worker needs:

  • a job offer letter,
  • a contract,
  • a copy of the LMIA, and
  • the LMIA number.               

If you want to extend your stay in Canada as a worker, check the expiry date on your work permit, and make sure you apply for a visa extension before that date. An application to Change Conditions or Extend Your Stay in Canada must be submitted at least 30 days before your current permit expires.

In some cases, you can work without a permit. The following occupations do not require a work permit; however they do have their individual requirements:

Athlete or coach

Aviation accident or incident investigator

Business visitor

Civil aviation inspector

Clergy

Convention organizer

Crew member

Emergency service provider

Examiner and evaluator

Expert witness or investigator

Family member of foreign representative

Foreign government officer or representative

Health care student

Judge, referee or similar official

Military personnel

News reporter or film and media crew

Producer or staff member working on advertisements

Performing artist

Public speaker

Short-term highly-skilled worker

Short-term researcher

Student working off-campus

Student working on-campus

To discuss your situation further and assistance with applying for a work permit contact us for a consultation.

Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)

A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) formerly known as a labour market opinion is a document that an employer in Canada may need to get before hiring a foreign worker. A LMIA is obtained from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC). The LMIA application ensures that Canadians have the first opportunity to apply for vacant jobs, and to assess if hiring a foreign worker will negatively impact the Canadian labour market.

A positive LMIA will show that there is a need for a foreign worker to fill the job. It will also show that no Canadian worker is available to do the job.

If the employer needs an LMIA, they must apply for one. To get an LMIA, employers must submit an application and supporting documents (e.g. wage, hours of work, duration of job, proof of advertising, etc.) to ESDC. The employer must show they have a genuine need to hire a foreign worker and that they made reasonable efforts to fill the vacant position with a Canadian worker, but were unsuccessful.

Once an employer gets the LMIA, the worker can apply for a work permit.

To apply for a work permit, a worker needs:

  • a job offer letter,
  • a contract,
  • a copy of the LMIA, and
  • the LMIA number.

In certain situations, an employer may not need to have an LMIA to hire a foreign worker as long as the worker meets the criteria for an exemption.

Jobs exempt from the LMIA:

  • covered by an international agreement like NAFTA or GATS, and non-trade agreements.
  • covered by an agreement between Canada and a province or territory.
  • exempt for “Canadian interests” reasons:
  • “significant benefit” – if your employer can prove you will bring an important social, cultural, and/or economic benefit to Canada. This can include: general: Self-employed engineers, technical workers, creative and performing artists, etc.
  • workers transferred within a company (intra-company transferees with specialized knowledge) – only those that will benefit Canada with their skills and experience
  • workers under Mobilité francophone
  • reciprocal employment – lets foreign workers get jobs in Canada when Canadians have similar opportunities in other countries
  • general (such as professional coaches and athletes working for Canadian teams)
  • International Experience Canada – a work abroad program for youth and young professionals
  • people in exchange programs like professors and visiting lecturers
  • designated by the Minister
  • academics, including researchers, guest lecturers and visiting professors (sponsored through a recognized federal program)
  • competitiveness and public policy
  • medical residents and fellows
  • post-doctoral fellows and people who have won academic awards from Canadian schools
  • Charity and religious work (not including volunteers)

Jobs that are exempt from needing an LMIA still need a work permit.

We can assist employers with an LMIA application if they wish to hire a foreign temporary worker. Please contact us for a consultation  to discuss your situation and the process requirements further.

Visitors Visa

If you wish to visit Canada you may require aTemporary Resident Visa (TRV), a visitor’s visa prior to seeking admission to Canada. A TRV is an official document issued by a visa office that is placed in a person’s passport to show that they have met the requirements for admission to Canada as a temporary resident.

Citizens of certain countries must apply for a TRV prior to entering Canada.

In order to visit Canada, applicants must:

  • Have a valid travel document such as a passport and be in good health;
  • Satisfy an immigration officer that they have sufficient ties to their country of nationality such as employment, property or family so that the officer will be convinced that the applicant will leave Canada at the end of the visit;
  • Show that they will have enough money in order to support themselves during their stay in Canada.

In most cases, a visitor’s status does not allow an individual to work or attend school in Canada.

A TRV obtained overseas can either be issued on a single-entry basis or a multiple-entry basis. The maximum validity of a multiple entry visa is five years.

Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA)

Certain visitors to Canada however, are exempt from the requirement to apply for a visa. Citizens of visa-exempt countries intending to travel to Canada by air are expected to have applied for an obtained an electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) before their departure to Canada. Travellers do not need an eTA when entering Canada by land or sea.

An Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) is a new entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals flying to or transiting through Canada. The authorization is electronically linked to your passport and is valid for five years or until your passport expires, whichever comes first.

  • Exceptions to the  eTA  requirement  include citizens of the United States, who do not require a TRV or an eTA.  Canadian permanent residents do not need an eTA to fly to Canada, but they do need to travel with their Canadian permanent resident (PR) card or PR travel document. Otherwise, they may not be able to board their flight to Canada.
  • U.S. permanent residents need an eTA to fly to Canada (as well as their U.S. Green Card). They do not need an eTA if entering Canada by land or sea.
  • Students and temporary workers from eTA required countries who received their student or work permit before August 1, 2015, and intend to travel from and return to Canada by air need an eTA.

Unless otherwise exempt from the requirement to obtain a TRV or an eTA, individuals who require a TRV do not require an eTA, and vice versa.

For further information on visitor visas or eTA’s, their terms and conditions, and whether you are how to apply, contact us for a consultation to discuss further.

Study Permit

A study permit is a document that allows foreign nationals to study at their designated learning institutions (DLI) in Canada for a limited period of time.

Most foreign nationals need a study permit to study in Canada. You must apply before you travel and make sure you have all the documents you need before you apply.  

To be eligible to apply you will need to meet the following requirements:

  • Be accepted at a designated learning institution in Canada.
  • Prove that you have enough money to cover the first year of tuition, as well as living expenses and return transportation to his or her home country
  • Be a law-abiding citizen with no criminal record and not be a risk to the security of Canada.
  • Satisfy the immigration officer that you will leave Canada at the end of the stay authorized by the study permit.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) may request an applicant to complete a medical examination and if you wish to study in the province of Quebec  you will be required to obtain Certificat d’acceptation du Quebec (Quebec Acceptance Certificate, or CAQ)

In some cases, you do NOT require a study permit to go to school in Canada:

  • If you are enrolled in a short-term course or program that is 6 months or less
  • If you are a family member, or staff member of a foreign representative to Canada, accredited by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, you may not need a permit to study in Canada
  • If you are a member of a foreign armed force under the Visiting Forces Act, you do not need a permit to study in Canada; however, if your family members including minor children, want to study in Canada, they must meet the requirements already mentioned
  • If you are a citizen of another country who has Registered Indian status in Canada, you do not need a permit to study in Canada

All other programs, longer than 6 months in length, DO require a study permit.

For further information on study permits, their terms and conditions, and whether you are eligible to apply, contact us for a consultation to discuss further.

Super Visa

The Super Visa, also known as the Parent and Grandparent Super Visa was launched in December 2011. Currently, most visitors to Canada may visit for up to six months when they first enter Canada. Visitors who wish to stay longer must apply for an extension, and pay a new fee.

The parent and grandparent super visa allows eligible parents and grandparents to visit family in Canada for up to two years per visit without the need to renew their status. It is a multi-entry visa that provides multiple entries valid for up to 10 years.

The key difference is that the Super Visa allows an individual to stay for up to two years on initial entry into Canada, while a regular 10-year multiple entry visa would only have a status period for each entry of six months only.

In order to receive a Parents and Grandparents Super Visa, the applicant must, in addition to meeting all legislative requirements for a Temporary Resident Visa if applicable, meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • Be the parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens or permanent residents.
  • Be found admissible to Canada
  • Have undergone a medical examination and be admissible on health grounds;
  • Have provided satisfactory evidence of private medical insurance; and
  • Have provided satisfactory evidence of financial support from their child or grandchild for the duration of their requested stay.

Dependants of parents and grandparents are not eligible for the super visa. However, they can apply for a regular visitor visa.              

If you do not need a visitor visa to enter Canada, you can still use the parent and grandparent super visa to stay in Canada for up to two years. In addition, if you travel by air, you will still need to apply for an eTA separately to allow you to travel to and enter Canada.

For further information on the Super Visa and whether you are eligible to apply, contact us for a consultation to discuss further.

For a more permanent option there is the annual Parent and Grandparent Sponsorship Program. It is only open for a short period of time and has an annual cap. Complete our Free Family Assessment form for further information on this program.

Caregiver Program

Are you a caregiver who provides child care or home support for seniors or people with disabilities?

After two years working as a caregiver in Canada, you can apply for permanent residence under the Government of Canada’s Caregiver Program.

On November 29, 2014, Citizenship Immigration Canada limited permanent residence applications through the Live-in Caregiver Program to foreign nationals whose initial entry to Canada was supported by a Labour Market Impact Assessment. At the same time two new pathways were established to allow permanent residence for foreign nationals with Canadian work experience in caregiving occupations.

The three pathways are:

  • Caring for Children Pathway: if you have provided child care in a home, while living either in or outside the home.
  • Caring for People with High Medical Needs Pathway: if you have cared for the elderly or people with disabilities or chronic diseases in a health facility or a home.
  • Live-in Caregiver Program: if you have provided care for children, the elderly or people with a disability while living in the home.

The most notable difference between the programs is that the Caring for Children Pathway and Caring for People with High Medical Needs Pathway have similar criteria as the Live-in Caregiver Program, but without the live-in requirement.

[spacer height=”15px”]Caring for Children Program

You can apply through this program if you have:

  • Provided full-time child care in a home in Canada for at least two years.
  • You plan to live outside the province of Quebec.  
  • Your work must match the description in Canada’s National Occupational Classification (NOC) Group 4411.
  • You must have cared for children under the age of 18, in your own home or in your employer’s home.
  • You do not need to have lived in your employer’s home to qualify.
  • Have completed a one-year Canadian post-secondary credential or equivalent foreign credential.
  • Pass a minimum threshold of language ability for one of Canada’s two official languages, either English or French. The minimum language ability is Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5.
  • You must not be inadmissible to Canada for criminal, security, health or financial reasons.

[spacer height=”15px”]Caring for People with High Medical Needs Program

You can apply through this program if you have:

  • Been working in Canada for at least two years full time as a registered or licensed practical nurse, nurse aid or orderly, home support worker.
  • Your work experience must be in one of these jobs listed in the Canadian National Occupational Classification: Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (3012); Licensed practical nurses (3233); Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates (3413); Home support workers and related occupations (4412).
  • You are licensed to practice in Canada.
  • You are registered with the applicable regulatory body, as required, in your province or territory at the time you apply.
  • Have completed a one-year Canadian post-secondary credential or equivalent foreign credential.
  • Pass a minimum threshold of language ability for one of Canada’s two official languages, either English or French. The minimum language ability is Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5.
  • You must not be inadmissible to Canada for criminal, security, health or financial reasons.

[spacer height=”15px”]Live-in Caregiver Program

You can apply for this program if you have:

  • At least two years of work experience in Canada.
  • Have completed a one-year Canadian post-secondary credential or equivalent foreign credential.
  • Pass a minimum threshold of language ability for one of Canada’s two official languages, either English or French. The minimum language ability is Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5.
  • You must not be inadmissible to Canada for criminal, security, health or financial reasons.

Contact us to book a consultation and find out how you may qualify under the Caregiver Program, for permanent residency status in Canada.

International Experience Canada (IEC)

International Experience Canada (IEC) provides the opportunity to gain life-changing personal and professional experience by traveling and working abroad.

The program is a formally-recognized reciprocal program; it allows foreign workers to take up employment in Canada when Canadians have similar reciprocal opportunities abroad.

The main aim of the IEC program is to enhance key bilateral relationships between Canada and other countries. There are 33 countries and territories involved in the program.

Agreements and arrangements are open to Canadian and foreign youth aged 18 to 35. It qualifies foreign youth for a Labour Market Impact Assessment-exempt (LMIA) work permit or for an open work permit.

Foreign nationals can participate in the program under three categories:

  1. Working Holiday
  2. Young Professionals
  3. International Co-op(Internship)

Working Holiday

The working holiday category is if you do not have a job offer yet.  You may want to work for more than one employer in Canada or in more than one location. It is also a good way to earn some money so that you can travel.  Applicants in this program will receive an open work permit.

Young Professionals

If you have a job offer in Canada that contributes to your professional development, the young professionals’ category is for you. In this program you will work for the same employer in the same location during your stay in Canada. It is an employer-specific work permit.

International Co-op (Internship)

The International Co-op category is for you if you are a student registered at a post-secondary institution and you need to do a work placement or internship to complete your studies.  In this case you would need to have a job offer for a work placement or internship in Canada, and will work for the same employer in the same location during your stay in Canada. The type of work permit you get in the International Co-op (Internship) category is an employer-specific work permit.

The following eligibility requirements must be satisfied to apply under the International Experience Canada program:

  • You must be a citizen of one of the countries or a resident of one of the territories with which Canada holds a bilateral agreement or arrangement.
  • Be between the age of 18 and 35.
  • Hold a valid passport that remains valid throughout the period of the stay in Canada.
  • Have minimum of CAN$2,500 to cover all expenses, including transportation to depart from Canada
  • Purchase comprehensive healthcare insurance for the duration of their authorized period of stay in Canada
  • Must not be accompanied by dependants
  • Satisfy the processing officer or border services that the participant will depart Canada at the end of their authorized stay.

If you are eligible, you will be placed into one or more pools of International Experience Canada (IEC) candidates. The profile will stay in the pool until you receive an Invitation to Apply for a work permit, all of the profiles from the pools are removed at the end of the season, or you are no longer eligible for IEC. Invitations are issued to candidates in the IEC pool regularly throughout IEC season.

To find if you are eligible for the International Experience Canada (IEC) program and discuss the program further, please contact us for a consultation.

Visa Extension

Most visitors are allowed to stay in Canada for no more than six months but, in some cases visitors can stay longer. The date that you must leave Canada will be stamped in your passport or on your study or work permit.

If you do not have a stamp in your passport, then your date to leave will be 6 months from the day you entered Canada.

If you want to extend your stay in Canada, you must apply to do so. An application must be made to extend your stay at least 30 days before your current temporary resident visa expires. If you stay longer than you are allowed by your visa, you will lose your temporary resident status and you could be asked to leave Canada.

An application for an extension can be made if you want to:

  • Extend your visitor, student or work status,
  • Change your permit type (for example, from a study permit to a work permit) or
  • Change your permit condition(s) (for example, if you are studying and you want to change schools, or if you are working and you want to change jobs).

Whilst you are awaiting a decision on your application you still have temporary resident (visitor) status. This is known as implied status.

Wish to stay longer in Canada, let us help you extend your current visa. Contact us now to discuss your options further.

Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA)

Certain visitors to Canada however, are exempt from the requirement to apply for a visa. Citizens of visa-exempt countries intending to travel to Canada by air are expected to have applied for an obtained anelectronic Travel Authorization (eTA) before their departure to Canada.

The eTA became a mandatory entry requirement for these air travellers on March 15, 2016

Travellers do not need an eTA when entering Canada by land or sea.

An Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) is a new entry requirement for visa-exempt foreign nationals flying to or transiting through Canada. The authorization is electronically linked to your passport and is valid for five years or until your passport expires, whichever comes first.

  • Exceptions to the  eTA  requirement  include citizens of the United States, who do not require a TRV or an eTA.  Canadian permanent residents do not need an eTA to fly to Canada, but they do need to travel with their Canadian permanent resident (PR) card or PR travel document. Otherwise, they may not be able to board their flight to Canada.
  • U.S. permanent residents need an eTA to fly to Canada (as well as their U.S. Green Card). They do not need an eTA if entering Canada by land or sea.
  • Students and temporary workers from eTA required countries who received their student or work permit before August 1, 2015, and intend to travel from and return to Canada by air need an eTA.

Unless otherwise exempt from the requirement to obtain a TRV or an eTA, individuals who require a TRV do not require an eTA, and vice versa.

For further information on eTA’s  and how to apply, contact us to discuss further.

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