LMIA Work Permits
LMIAs are documents that must be applied for by a Canadian employer, but it is sometimes possible to hire a foreign worker who is exempt from needing an LMIA, or who is exempt from requiring a work permit.
LMIA application procedures vary depending on the wage of the person being hired. There are specialized streams for employers wishing to obtain LMIAs for certain areas of employment including:
Hiring In-Home Caregivers
Hiring Agricultural Workers
Hiring Foreign Academics
Hiring within the province of Quebec
LMIA Application Requirements
LMIA applications are submitted in hard copy, by mail, to the appropriate Service Canada Processing Centre. Applications must include evidence that the following criteria have been met:
Business Legitimacy Documents
Employers submitting LMIA applications for low-wage positions, must also address the following three requirements:
Cap on TFWs
After an LMIA application has been processed, employers are issued either a positive LMIA (meaning they can proceed with hiring a foreign national) or a negative LMIA (meaning the employer is not approved to hire a foreign national).
Exemptions to LMIA Requirements
In certain cases, it may not be necessary for an employer to obtain an LMIA in order to hire a foreign worker. The majority of LMIA exemptions are managed through the International Mobility Program (IMP).
Global Talent Stream (GTS)
This is a 2-year program assisting Canadian employers to hire highly-skilled global talent, allowing them to expedite the process for hiring foreign nationals.
Canada’s IMP allows high-skilled foreign nationals to work in Canada as intra-company transferees. If a foreign national works for a company outside of Canada, they may be eligible to obtain an LMIA-exempt work permit to transfer to their company's Canadian location.
NAFTA Work Permits
NAFTA provides opportunities for the citizens of the US and Mexico to work in Canada. Foreign nationals covered by NAFTA provisions may be eligible to work in Canada without an LMIA or a work permit.
CETA Work Permits
CETA provides opportunities for the citizens EU nations to work in Canada. Foreign nationals covered by CETA provisions may be eligible to work in Canada without an LMIA or a work permit.