How To Get A Work Permit Without An LMIA

LMIA, labour market impact assessment, Employment and Social Development Canada/Service Canada, time, financial resource, job offer, employers, employees, foreign individuals, exemption, international trade agreement, immigration, social, cultural, economic, PR, permanent residence, domestic agreement, skilled, self-employed, intra-company transferee, French, CETA, NAFTA

Work Permits Without LMIAs Immigration To Canada

Most individuals applying for a work permit in Canada need a Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). An LMIA is issued by Employment and Social Development Canada/Service Canada which allows employers to hire foreign individuals. However, getting an LMIA takes time and financial resources, as described below, so people ask about work permits without LMIAs.

Individuals need to obtain a positive response on the LMIA as well as receive a job offer from their prospective employers before applying for a work permit. Individuals also need to pass all basic eligibility requirements as needed.

Certain jobs do not, however, require employers to obtain a positive LMIA before hiring foreign individuals, provided they meet certain criteria.  Although the prospective employer does not need to obtain a positive LMIA before hiring a foreign individual, the person may be required to obtain a work permit before starting work. Exemption from LMIA does not mean exemption from a work permit.

Sections 204 to 208 of the Immigration and Refugees Protection Regulations (IRPR) provide a full list of LMIA-exemptions. This article focuses only on the ones most common. These exemptions require very specific applications. For a better chance at receiving work permits without LMIAs, contact the immigration lawyers at Kahane Law Office in Canada.

Jobs With A Work Permit Not Needing LMIA

The Canadian government created programs for work permits without LMIAs under certain situations. For example, the following include ways of getting work permits without LMIAs:

  • Jobs providing a significant cultural, economic or social benefit to Canada;
  • Positions that fall under international trade agreements;
  • Jobs for foreign individuals already Canada in with permanent residence applications being processed; and lastly
  • Jobs that fall under domestic agreements between the Federal Government of Canada and certain provincial and territorial governments within the country.

Significant Cultural, Economic Or Social Benefit To Canada

Apply for work permits without LMIAs under this exemption if you are a:

  • Skilled worker providing a significant social, economic or cultural benefit to Canada;
  • Self-employed entrepreneur;
  • Intra-company transferee in a multinational company; and lastly
  • Skilled worker with proficiency in French.

The foreign national’s proposed benefit must be significant, meaning it must be important or notable to Canada.

Foreign entrepreneurs should be able to demonstrate their businesses’ capability to generate significant benefits to Canadian society as well as its economy or culture.

International companies can also transfer their employees to one of their Canadian subsidiaries without LMIA.

Lastly, skilled workers who can demonstrably prove their French proficiency and have job offers outside Quebec may be LMIA-exempt depending on the terms and conditions of their job applications

Jobs That Fall Under International Trade Agreements

Professionals working under international trade agreements such as North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or Canadian-European Trade Agreement (CETA) in particular may work in Canada with an exemption from the LMIA. Professionals working under this category, however, would generally still require a work permit. Of benefit is that in these situations they allow work permits without LMIAs.

Jobs For Foreign Nationals In Canada With Permanent Residence Applications Pending

Certain foreign nationals currently in Canada are eligible for a work permit to bridge the gap between the expiration of their current work permit and the final decision on their application for permanent residence. This exemption of getting work permits without LMIAs is useful. Inorder to qualify, they must have applied for permanent residence under one of the following classes:

Jobs Under Domestic Federal & Provincial/Territorial Agreements

Certain domestic agreements between federal and provincial/territorial government grant foreign individuals LMIA exemption. This could be a job under the Provincial Nominee Program. Most important, these individuals have obtained a certificate of nomination and valid job offers in the provinces or territories do not require an LMIA.

Immigration Lawyers Who Help With Work Permits Without LMIAs

Do you need more focused advice to work in Canada without an LMIA? Still unsure whether you qualify for any of the LMIA exemptions? The quickest way to reach our immigration lawyers is by sending an email. If you prefer speaking to someone live, call us toll-free at 1-877-225-8817 today! Also feel free to reach us locally in either our Calgary, Alberta office at 403-225-8810 or our Edmonton, Alberta office at (780) 571-8463. Our lawyers are more than ready, willing, and able to find the best way for you to work in Canada.