June 22, 2016

Parlez-vous français?

Posted by Legal Team - Bellissimo Law Group PC

Earlier this month, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada announced a new addition to the significant benefit category.  Foreign nationals who have been recruited through a Francophone immigration promotional event, and who are destined for a province or territory outside of Quebec and qualified under a National Occupational Classification (NOC) o, A or B, may be eligible for an exemption from the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

This program has been developed to encourage the development of Canada’s minority official language in Canadian communities outside Quebec. The prospective employer will need to submit an Offer of Employment, before a work permit application is made and the foreign national must meet the following criteria:

  • Destined to work in a province or territory outside of Quebec;
  • has been recruited through a Francophone immigration promotional event coordinated between the federal government and Francophone minority communities; and
  • qualified to work under NOC 0, A or B.

Note: The offer of employment in Canada does not have to require French language ability.

The foreign national’s habitual language of daily use has to be French. Where an officer is not satisfied the foreign national’s habitual language is French, they will either request an interview or language test results to demonstrate advanced intermediate level or above in French. For this purpose, a Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) of level 7 or higher in the Test d’évaluation de français (TEF) will be used.

Foreign nationals cannot make an initial work permit application under this exemption from inside Canada. Initial work permit applications must be submitted online or via a visa application centre overseas.


For more information on LMIA/Work Permits, please click here.