August 3, 2018
In 2017, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (“IRCC”) guaranteed faster processing for certain work permit applications and introduced Short-Term Work Permit Exemptions for eligible high-skilled foreign nationals.
Faster Work Permit Processing
Certain work permit applicants can benefit from faster processing times through the Global Skills Strategy (“GSS”). To be eligible, applicants must be applying from outside of Canada and either:
- If applying for an LMIA-based work permit, hold a positive LMIA under the Global Talent Stream; or
- If applying for an LMIA-exempt work permit, be eligible for an LMIA-exempt, employer-specific work permit for a role that is in NOC TEER Category 0 or 1.
Note that International Experience Canada applicants are not eligible.
IRCC has guaranteed that in most cases applicants that qualify under GSS will be eligible for 2-3 week work permit processing (however, processing times continue to be slower than usual due to the COVID-19 pandemic).
Short-Term Work Permit Exemptions
In 2017, IRCC also introduced Short-Term Work Permit Exemptions for eligible foreign nationals who will work in Canada in roles falling under NOC TEER Category 0 or 1 for up to:
- 15 consecutive days in a 6 month period; or
- 30 consecutive days in a 12 month period.
This exemption has proven itself to be extremely helpful to Canadian employers requiring only short-term, highly-skilled expertise in Canada.
Certain highly-skilled researchers may also benefit from a longer 120 day Short-Term Work Permit Exemption. Specifically, foreign nationals with an offer from a publicly funded degree-granting institution at the college or university level (or its affiliated research institution) and who will be contributing significantly to the value of the research project may do so without the need for a work permit for up to 120 consecutive days.
These changes have been happily welcomed by employers in Canada: they are excellent additions to the options available when hiring foreign talent.
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