Frequently Asked Questions About Canadian Work Permits

Frequently Asked Questions About Canadian Work Permits

1. What is a work permit?

Work visas and employment authorizations are known as work permits in Canada. A work permit is a document issued by the Canadian Government that allows foreign individuals to work in a specific job for a specific employer.

2.  Who needs a work permit to work in Canada?

In generally, any individual who is not a Canadian citizen or Canadian Permanent Resident of Canada will require a valid work permit to work in Canada. However, foreign workers may perform some jobs in Canada without a work permit.

 3.  How can I obtain a work permit?

The first step is generally to get a valid job offer from a Canadian employer. Open work permits are the exception and do not require a prior job offer and may be available to the spouses or partners of certain work permit holders.

 4.  Who issues work permits?

Work permits are issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), which is a department of the Canadian Government.

5.  Are there different types of work permits?

Yes. There are two broad categories of work permits; (1) those that relate to jobs requiring the Canadian Government department of Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC1) confirmation, and (2) those that are exempt from HRSDC1 confirmation (HRSDC2).

6.  How long will it take to get my work permit?

Work permits that are applied for at a Canadian Port of Entry can be issued the same day. Most work permit applications applied for from outside Canada are generally issued in days or weeks. This depends upon whether a medical examination is required and the workload at the particular visa office to which you applied.

7.  How long can a work permit be issued for and can it be extended?

The duration of a work permit depends on the nature of your job in Canada and the work permit category under which you have applied. Work permits can be extended from inside Canada, but some work permits have a maximum duration.

8.  Can I change employers on the same work permit?

In general, work permits apply to a specific employer. If you change employers you must apply for a new work permit. Only workers in Canada on open work permits may change employer without reapplying.

9.  Will I require a medical exam for my work permit application?

A medical examination is required before you can work in an occupation that protects public health. You may also be required to take a medical exam prior to approval of your work permit if the job offer exceeds six months.

10.  Can my spouse/partner and children come with to Canada?

Yes, your spouse or partner and dependent children can accompany you to Canada. You may request an open work permit for your spouse or partner. Your children may require a study permit to attend school in Canada.

11.  Is there a fee to obtain a work permit?

The Canadian government charges $155 per application.

12.  What are the advantages to hiring a Registered Canadian Immigration Consultant to help me obtain a Canadian work permit?

Employment and business opportunities are generally time sensitive, which makes having an experienced Consultant with legal expertise the most efficient way to obtain a work visa.

It is important to note that, while your qualifications should be the determining factor in the success of your work permit application, the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) Officer’s discretion can play a critical role in the outcome of your application for a work permit. Understanding how CIC Officers use that discretion is among the most important benefits you gain by working with a Consultant.

13.  What services will you provide to me?

We will evaluate whether or not a work permit is necessary in your case and, if so, whether or not you are eligible for one. Next, we will assess your situation to determine the type of work permit that would be best for you and see if you qualify for an HRSDC exemption. We will advise you of the steps you need to take and the information you will need in order to receive your work permit.

We will manage your application to improve the likelihood of successfully obtaining a work permit. We can personally present evidence to the CIC Officer that will put your application in the best light.

We are well aware of the Canadian Government’s processing service standards. Any undue delay in your application will quickly become evident to us, and will allow us to act immediately on your behalf.

If you would like to consider obtaining a Canadian work permit, feel free to contact me with any questions.  We can assess your eligibility as well as the likelihood of your ability to obtain a Canadian work permit.  Call me at 716-810-2121 or email me at

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