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Work Permits

Work permits are generally required for foreign workers who wish to enter Canada to work on a temporary basis and ease skill shortages in Canada

If you are currently residing in a country outside of Canada and wish to apply for a work permit, there are several mandatory documents that you must have ready for submission.  


Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP)

If you are currently working in Canada on a work permit which will soon expire and you have submitted an application for permanent residence through the Express Entry system, you may be eligible for a Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP). As the name suggests, a BOWP is issued to bridge the gap between the expiry of the work permit and the final decision on the permanent residence application.

After an electronic application for permanent residence (e-APR) is submitted through the Express Entry system, an Acknowledgement of Receipt letter is generated in the applicant’s MyCIC account. This letter provides a file number and confirms that the application has been received. Applicants who are eligible for a BOWP may apply immediately after receipt of this letter.

In order to be eligible for a BOWP, the e-APR must first pass a completeness check. This means that an Immigration Officer has done an initial assessment of the application and has verified that all necessary information and documentation has been received. If the completeness check is successful, the application for a BOWP will then be processed. If the e-APR is found to be incomplete, the application for permanent residence will be rejected and the application for a BOWP will be refused. Therefore, if you are relying on a BOWP to continue working in Canada, it is very important that your permanent residence application is completed accurately. If your application is rejected and your work permit has expired, you will be unable to submit another BOWP application with the new e-APR.

In addition to passing the completeness check, to be eligible for a BOWP an applicant must:

  • Be currently in Canada;
  • Have valid status on a work permit that is due to expire within the next four months;
  • Be the main applicant on the permanent residence application submitted;
  • Have submitted an application for an open work permit which includes the processing fee.

LMIA-Based Work Permit

A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a document issued by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)/Service Canada and is required in order to apply for most Canadian work permits. Prior to submitting the application for an LMIA, the employer must advertise and Job Bank must be one source. Applications for an LMIA for a temporary position have an associated application fee of $1,000 for each temporary foreign worker position applied for.  The positive LMIA is provided by Service Canada / ESDC to the employer, who will give it to the foreign worker to submit with his/her application for a work permit, which, if granted, is typically issued for one year. There are shorter processing times of 10 days available for eligible highest-demand, highest paid and shortest duration occupations, i.e. skilled trades within top 10% of pay bracket and for positions that are less than 120 days.

The Application for an LMIA has the same requirements as the LMIAs for Express Entry and Permanent Residence, hence receives the same scrutiny from ESDC.

The foreign workers must show that they meet all the requirements of the position (i.e. education, experience, skills) as listed in the LMIA application.

Owner/ Operator LMIA

To qualify as an owner/operator, a foreign national must demonstrate that they:

  • have a level of controlling interest in the business of more than 50% of the business,
  • are in the most senior position and are active in the management of the business;
  • have a sound business plan
  • plan to employ at least one Canadian or permanent resident in the first year, and
  • the business activity in Canada will create more employment opportunities for Canadians and permanent residents and/or skills transfer to Canadians and permanent residents.

Advantages:

  • When applying for an Owner/Operator LMIA, there is no requirement for advertising or recruitment.
  • This option is available anywhere in Canada.
  • The validity of a positive LMIA is up to 2 years; IRCC issues a work permit for 2 years 
  • Becomes a path to permanent residence through the Express Entry System

Disadvantages:

  • The unpredictability of end-result;
  • Employer-specific work permit;
  • There may be a loss of investment; and
  • There are some tax disadvantages.

Global Talent Stream LMIA (Pilot Program)

A two-year pilot to hire highly-skilled global talent, which began on June 12, 2017, under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, the Global Talent Stream is a new streamlined process. The Global Talent Stream Pilot is a key part of the Innovation and Skills Plan which has as a primary objective making Canada a world-leading centre for innovation. The main characteristic of this pilot program is the Labour Market Benefits Plan to detail the specific benefits for the Canadian Labour market and the Canadian economy, and employers must provide activities and targets for each benefit. By taking into employment highly-skilled global talent, the employer must commit to further providing both mandatory and complementary benefits, depending on the category they apply under:

Category A

  • referred to the Global Talent Stream by one of Global Talent Stream’s designated partners;
  • hiring unique and specialized talent;
  • mandatory benefits for Category A: creating jobs;

Category B

  • only the occupations on the Global Talent occupations list;
  • mandatory benefits for Category B: increasing skills and training investments.

Alongside job creation and investment in skills and training, other benefits are transferring knowledge to Canadians and permanent residents and enhanced company performance.

There is no advertising requirement and no transition plan for this stream; however, there is a mandatory progress review on the employer’s progress on their commitments made in the Labour Market Benefits Plan.

Considering the benefits, this pilot program might be extended and eventually transition into a permanent program.

LMIA-Based Work Permit under PNPs

Provincial Nominee Programs facilitate the entry or stay in Canada of many categories of professionals who otherwise might not qualify under the Express Entry System.

Note: if you have not found or trained a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident to fill out the labour shortage, you have to keep in mind that proper planning is necessary and apply for a new LMIA ahead of time. The temporary worker can apply for a work permit extension before the initial work permit expired, and he can continue working for your organization while awaiting a decision to be made on their application. For the new applications for an LMIA for the high-wage positions, your transition plan must be feasible so to be credible, with realistic and verifiable implementation steps of:

  • increased efforts to hire Canadians and train them in the long-term; or
  • support the high-skilled temporary foreign worker transition to becoming a permanent resident of Canada.

Business Expansion to Canada through PNPs

Provincial nominee programs authorize provinces and territories to nominate applicants based on the labour market and economic needs of each province or territory. Please visit our PROVINCIAL NOMINEE PROGRAMS page.

LMIA-Exempt Work Permit

The following sections of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR) provide the IRCC with the regulatory authority to issue a work permit for temporary positions that do not require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

  • R204: International agreements Canada-International Free Trade Agreements (FTA) (CUSMA/USMCA, GATS, CETA, CPTP, ETC.), Canada-International Non-Trade Agreements (SITA, IATA, etc.);
  • R205: Canadian interests (Significant benefit (unique work situations), Reciprocal employment, research, competitiveness and public policy, Charitable or religious work)
  • R206: No other means of support (Refugee claimants, and persons under unenforceable removal orders)
  • R207: Permanent residence applicants in Canada (spouse or common-law partner in Canada, Convention refugees, successful pre-removal risk assessment applicants,
  • R208: Humanitarian reasons (holder of a Temporary Resident Permit of 6 months or more with no means of support)

Under these regulations, employers can avoid the lengthy and complex LMIA process.

Exemptions apply to the following types of Work permits:

  • Work permit for a start-up visa entrepreneur if they do not intend to immigrate to Canada;
  • Work permit for the key personnel for the new start-up visa office;
  • Work Permit for employees of international Organizations with divisions in Canada, under the International Mobility Program (IMP), Canada’s International Agreements and Non-trade-related agreements;
  • Work permit for after-sales service specialists (installation, repair or maintenance of industrial or commercial equipment);

Intra- company transfer (ICT) – existing subsidiary in Canada

The first key element of an LMIA-exempt application is to establish the relationship between the Canadian organization and the parent company, branch or affiliate outside Canada. To be eligible for the intra-company transfer to the Canadian office, the foreign national eligible must have been employed for a minimum of one year in the same position by the parent company, subsidiary, branch or affiliate company outside Canada. The transferred personnel have the option to be joined by their family members for the period they will work in Canada. Contact us for exploring the best options for the employer and for your transferees.

LMIA-exempt applications involve two phases:

1) the employer must submit an offer of employment to the IRCC, together with the employer compliance fee, and provide the foreign national with the offer of employment number (the AA number); and

2)  the work permit application, together with a visitor visa for each family member, spouse work permit, and/or dependent children study permit/visitor record, depending on the situation.

Note: If your job is at the NOC 0 (managerial, executive) or NOC A (professional) level, you may be eligible for a two-week application processing.

The application must be submitted online, must be complete, and the application fees must be paid correctly.

Start-Up Intra-Company Transfer Work Permits – (New Office)

Before making the LMIA-exempt work permit application, the Canadian company must register or incorporate in Canada, so the qualifying company relationship between the entities is established.

International Experience Canada (IEC) Work Permit

A work permit under this category is meant for youth between 18 and 35 years from a country of citizenship that has an agreement with Canada that allows applying for an IEC work permit. There are three categories, but not all three are applicable to all countries: working holiday, young professionals and international Co-op internship.

The working holiday category provides an open work permit, while the young professionals and the international Co-op internship provide employer-specific work permits.

It is important to keep updated, as the eligibility requirements for countries and categories are continuously changing.

For example, Chilean citizens may participate in IEC twice, under any of the three categories. Under the Young Professionals category, Chilean citizens, particularly post-secondary graduates, who wish to further their careers by gaining professional work experience in Canada for up to 12 months can submit their profile to the pool. To be eligible, the Chilean citizen must:

  • be of age between the ages of 18 and 35 (inclusive)
  • have a signed letter of offer or contract of employment in Canada—the employment offer must be in their field of expertise and enhance their professional development
  • provide proof of financial resources to help cover expenses in Canada, and to purchase a departure ticket at the end of the authorized stay in Canada
  • provide evidence of health insurance
  • not be accompanied by dependents
  • be admissible to Canada.

To determine your eligibility please contact Bellissimo Law Group PC.

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What Our Clients Are Saying
Bellissimo Law has been the greatest help we could have asked for our journey. Our case needed an appeal which was very well organized, documented and presented to the authorities. We received a positive decision on the case all because of the expertise of Mr. Bellissimo and team. Keely and John are great at responding all smart and stupid questions and the team is very prompt to answer emails. They have the entire process streamlined, right from extension to evidences which makes our job easier. We got the quotes from some of the other law firms too who are all good and had lower charges. We chose Bellisimo because they are the best and in the long term a few extra bucks won't matter but the results will. Highly recommended.
Vaibhav Chaturvedi
Vaibhav Chaturvedi
16:51 06 May 19
Our immigration process was handled by Bellissimo Law Group. The first consultation with Mr Bellissimo was very insightful. Ms Keely Anderson was particularly very helpful. She guided us through the process. I will definitely recommend this law firm. They know what they are doing. Thanks once again for guiding us through the process.
Dare Sokoya
Dare Sokoya
19:27 28 Mar 19
I greatly recommend Bellissimo Law Group. After a long time waiting, I will finally be reunited with my son here in Canada. We are very grateful for all the great, very professional services that they have done for my case. My personal thanks to Kelly Anderson and her group. More power to all of you!
michele medalla
michele medalla
23:36 04 Mar 19
I wish I’d found Bellissimo Law 9 years ago before taking the advice of a so called Immigration Consultant who led our family to a very costly near disaster in our quest to immigrate to join our family in Canada. Years later, in desperation, at a Procedural Fairness Letter stage internet research seemed to suggest Bellissimo Law may be the company to deal with our problem. From the first consultation with Bellissimo Law their extremely thorough, very focused telephone interview personified professionalism and reassurance. All subsequent dealings with any member of the team were of the same high standard. It was clear to us that Mario Bellissimo leads from the front and that his staff not only respect him but that they are trained to match his standards and caring approach. I believe it is very important to mention that although they seem expensive, when our particular problem resolved more quickly and easily than anticipated they refunded the money which had not yet been used. Thanks particularly to Keely, our lead person, and to all at Bellissimo. I will always, highly recommend Bellissimo Law. Keep up the good work. In less than 6 months all our worries are over. We are now permanent residents.
Patricia Forsythe
Patricia Forsythe
23:33 22 Mar 19
Very professional and very informative on the phone. Good to see that it is not all about money and more about relationship building. Highly recommended. Thank you!
Atabak Amirabrahimi
Atabak Amirabrahimi
17:19 16 Apr 19
Great service and successfully guided us through the immigration and citizenship processes. Terrific attention to detail, and created a terrific case for our application, which was successfully approved. Attached is a picture with the judge. A wonderful day. So proud to be a Canadian!
Carlos Berber
Carlos Berber
15:45 26 May 19
Bellísimo law group made a dream a reality. They help me throughout the entire process of becoming a Canadian permanent resident. Great service. I will definitely use their services again in the future. Highly recommended
Jose Rendon
Jose Rendon
01:01 29 May 19
We had a fantastic experience with Bellissimo Law Group. From Mr. Bellissimo to the entire staff, in particular Viola Gniadek, were professional, diligent, knowledgeable and available at all times. We thank the entire group for a successful resolution for my friend Catherine. I would highly recommend the firm for any and all of your immigration needs. Thank you all for a job well done!
Liliana Pelech
Liliana Pelech
14:53 01 Jun 19
I sponsored my parents in 2007 and I was refused in 2013 based on medical inadmissibility of my mentally challenged brother. I found Late Mr. Rotenberg as my original lawyer who passed away during the process. I was very disappointed as I was counting on his expertise to help me with my situation. Mr. Bellissimo was God send for me to help me with my case. I am very thankful that he took on my case. His team member Ms. Tamara Thomas worked with me and advised me with regards to the documents that I needed to obtain, they did extensive research on eligibility criteria of various social and health systems. They worked with me on the interview preparation. The time spend working with them was very targeted and very specific to address the Minister's concerns. They ensured there was no further waste in time or any delays. The way they presented my case and helped me win it only a world class Law firm can do that as there were times I was going to lose my hopes. I would totally recommend this law firm to anyone who is going through similar situation as mine with both hands down. Mr. Bellissimo and the team (Ms. Tamara Thomas) you guys are amazing and thank you so much again for reuniting me with my family in my beautiful dream country Canada.
Irshad Khan
Irshad Khan
17:46 04 Jun 19
They’re very professional and the advice was given 100% accurate. The lawyer Justin Toh didn’t rush at all. He took the time to answer all our questions in details. I’m very happy with their service.
Shah Alam
Shah Alam
21:15 09 Jul 19
Great service! I had a lot of questions prepared and Viola answered each and every one of them articulately and concisely. I definitely recommend Bellissimo!
RYAN COWLEY
RYAN COWLEY
17:39 30 Jul 19
Hands down i would never done it by myself if it wasn't for Mr. Mario and Ms. Anderson hard work, I was facing deportation and they helped me step by step to get through it to be honest I am very forgetful person and Ms. Anderson always keep me on track and follow up with me making sure i get things done and send to her and they always keep me updated on everything, I am no longer facing such difficulties and i can stay in Canada. i would recommend Bellissiomo Law Group to all friends and Family. thank you again.
Omid Rezaee
Omid Rezaee
16:00 12 Aug 19
Bellissimo Law has been the greatest help we could have asked for our journey. Our case needed an appeal which was very well organized, documented and presented to the authorities. We received a positive decision on the case all because of the expertise of Mr. Bellissimo and team. Keely and John are great at responding all smart and stupid questions and the team is very prompt to answer emails. They have the entire process streamlined, right from extension to evidences which makes our job easier. We got the quotes from some of the other law firms too who are all good and had lower charges. We chose Bellisimo because they are the best and in the long term a few extra bucks won't matter but the results will. Highly recommended.
Vaibhav Chaturvedi
Vaibhav Chaturvedi
16:51 06 May 19
Bellissimo Law Group did a wonderful job. They helped me and my family obtain work permits in Canada. They were responsive, professional, and got the job done in a timely manner with no issues. I would absolutely work with them in the future.
Eric Blomster
Eric Blomster
11:58 30 Aug 19
Bellissimo Law Firm has great lawyers who have handled our immigration case. The staff was very professional. We are very happy with their service.We had to go through a tough ordeal because of misrepresentation earlier and our file was rejected. That is when we assigned this case to Mario Bellissimo. I would happily refer his law firm to any one whose in the same situation as ours or any immigration related matter.I would like to mention a special thanks to Tamara who was in touch with us and kept as posted. Mario had 100% confidence in our case that we will win which was very assuring for me and my family. And we finally got our permanent residency.God bless him and his firm.
mubina fatima
mubina fatima
18:35 15 Sep 19
Our family could not thank you Bellissimo Law Group enough for all their help on my brother's case. We are very thankful for their professionalism, effort and hard work. We truly appreciate for everything that the team has done for us. Especially Keely, I cannot thank her more for her patience, advice and explanation throughout the whole process. I know that this has been a tough and long battle for all of us and finally it is a dream come true. Words cannot describe how thankful and happy we are. To us, thank you is not enough to express our appreciation, I would call them the lifesaver for our family. Once again, thank you and we wish everyone all a continue success.
April Cheng
April Cheng
07:05 24 Sep 19
Great communication and appointment setup. Mr. Bellissimo was quite frank and candid and spoke openly and candidly. Gave me the right advice to wait till a certain stage to file my case.
Imran Butt
Imran Butt
01:53 01 Oct 19
I really appreciate Bellissimo Law group for helping me out especially in obtaining my postgraduate work permit. I was in an unfortunate situation where there was a chance of my application being rejected but I was able to obtain it in the end. I especially thank Michelle for helping me out throughout this whole process. It was not easy but she was able to respond to my questions and answer them in a very informative and prompt manner. I definitely recommend Bellissimo Law group.
JH C
JH C
20:23 17 Oct 19
I am indebted to Ms. Viola Gniadek, Mr. Mario Bellissimo and the entire team at Bellissimo Law Group for having assisted me with my Spouse’s Open Work Permit & Children’s Study Permits that were denied unfairly and arbitrarily -Twice consecutively - earlier this year. Viola assisted me in putting together my family’s file from scratch, over a period of 2 months. This would be my third attempt, and my first time with the law firm. There were times I had bouts of anxiety given the air of uncertainty and hopelessness but Viola was always there to calm my nerves and was very quick in her email responses. The firm knows what they’re doing and they do it very, very well!Absolutely recommended and I will not hesitate in using their services again in future, should there be a need 🙂
Nabil Valiulla
Nabil Valiulla
21:58 17 Oct 19
Life changing experience. Simply brilliant! Kelly Anderson is very professional and friendly. Our son is special needs kid and with all Bellissimo Law Group support we got our PR only in 8 moths.
Madina N
Madina N
21:56 22 Oct 19
I totally recommend them for any issues, concerns or guidance you might need. Very reliable and to the point. I had Miss Alexandra as my immigration lawyer and I have only good things to say about her involvement in this long and stressful process. She knew perfectly how to approach, handle and solve any issues we encountered and with their help the outcome was a positive one.Thank you!
Ana-Maria Veinea
Ana-Maria Veinea
03:14 22 Nov 19
I want to say thank to Mario Bellissimo , Keely Anderson, Natalia Borkowska and all the entire team for a wonderful job they did. Me and my families case was really hard and there were some moments where we were close to being deported but Mario Bellissimo and his team fought really hard for my family and was able to help up stay in Canada to the point where we got the permanent residence. I would also like to recognize the fact that Keely Anderson was by my side through out the whole situation telling me every step to take. We truly recommend Bellissimo law firm, I believe they are the best law firm in Toronto and can be trust worthy for any situation.
B Navarro
B Navarro
00:59 09 Dec 19
I would like to thank Mr. Bellissimo, Ms. Keely Anderson, Mr. John Wigle and the rest of the team at Bellissimo Law group for helping me become a permanent resident in Canada. I had a complicated case that took quite a while to process and at times I thought it may not happen. Throughout it all Mr. Bellissimo and Ms. Anderson were very friendly, professional, helpful and honest and through their diligent work got me the result I had been hoping for. I would highly recommend them for any immigration needs. Simon Prigmore.
Simon Prigmore
Simon Prigmore
14:08 17 Dec 19
We would like to thank Bellissimo Law Group especially Mr. Mario Bellissimo, Ms. Keely Anderson and Mr. John Wigle for assisting us to obtain a Permanent Resident status in Canada. We truly appreciate everything that all of you have done for our complicated case. Once again, thank you for your professionalism and hard-work during this past year. It has been a long and though journey for us, but finally our dream has come true.
Eve C
Eve C
15:39 09 Jan 20
Had the pleasure of a call with one of their lawyers. They did their research prior and provided in depth feedback. Chy was great, she was on time, actually earlier. She answered all my questions, offered various options for my case, kept probing for different avenues. A five star rating from my interaction and stellar performance from Chy (Hope I got the spelling right)
Robin Maharaj
Robin Maharaj
00:14 10 Jan 20
We had an excellent meeting with both Michelle and Mario, where we were treated with respect and they did their very best to help us. Whilst the answer was not we were hoping for, it became clear that they would fight to get us the best result possible. To be highly recommended.
John Smurthwaite
John Smurthwaite
00:40 30 Jan 20
Our family could not thank you Bellissimo Law Group enough for all their help on my cousin Cong's case. We are very thankful for their professionalism, effort and hard work. Especially Ms. Alexandra, we cannot thank her more for her patience, advice and explanation throughout the whole process. Once again, thank you and we wish everyone here all a continue success.
Allen Y Du
Allen Y Du
03:52 05 Feb 20
I had a great consultation with Mr. Bellissimo. He was on time for the appointment and explained everything in detail. I was so impressed with his knowledge that I started my process right away.
Vik S
Vik S
16:29 11 Mar 20
The BLG team provided an excellent service. Many thanks for the professional advice given and the detailed way in which my case was handled. I would especially like to thank attorney Alexandra Goncharova, for her patience and thoroughness in working through my case. I would highly recommend this firm.
Kenroy_B
Kenroy_B
18:28 14 Mar 20
Very helpful. Only at the beginning of our process of Spousal Sponsorship but they have been very helpful and supportive so far!
Roseanne Fox
Roseanne Fox
17:15 27 Apr 20
I would like to thanks Bellissimo Law Group and all the staff worked on my case. Their professionalism and dedication helped me to get a provincial nomination. Within a short time,  their legal staff followed with me closely to collect all details and information to build my case. Thank you again for making my dream comes true.
A. Ahmed
A. Ahmed
15:10 25 May 20
I have contacted with them regarding our visa application and they responded my queries immediately. They allow me a short conversation without paying them anything and thereafter they gave me 30 minutes time by a consultation fees. The lawyer i spoke to seems professional , informative and very friendly.
Mohammad Masud Parvez
Mohammad Masud Parvez
14:55 10 Jun 20
I am based in India and consulted them for my complex immigration issue telephonically.Right from fixing the appointment to imparting advice was done very professionally. I was extremely satisfied with the answers to my queries and appreciated their suggestions and esteemed advice. Throughout the conversation I did not feel that they were rushing through and they very patiently adressed my queries and doubts. I would strongly recommend Bellissimo Law Group.
Rajendra Durve
Rajendra Durve
00:50 11 Jun 20
The most professional Immigration law group . Sponsoring my parents was my dream since I landed here in 2012. I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and everyone in this firm , especially Viola , who was taking care of my file , without her I don't think I would have got the visa for my mother and my dependent brother with Down syndrome. I am forever thankful and grateful to her and for Bellissimo law group , they are professional, well equipped to take care of any case. I highly recommend it to anyone looking to start an immigration process.Bellissimo Law Group made my dream come true.Thank you again and best regards! Souad B.
Souad Batrawi
Souad Batrawi
23:55 15 Jul 20
Great service and successfully guided us through the immigration and citizenship processes. Terrific attention to detail, and created a terrific case for our application, which was successfully approved. Attached is a picture with the judge. A wonderful day. So proud to be a Canadian!
Carlos Berber
Carlos Berber
01:01 27 May 19
Excellent service, professionalism and attention to detail. Having used BLG's services in the past, I decided to avail their service again, this time for my permanent residence application.They are very well equipped with a great team who have a wealth of knowledge. A special thanks to Ms. Goncharova who worked very hard on my case and I was successfully able to obtain my PR.Thank you and God bless
E a
E a
20:53 17 Jul 20
Incredibly impressed with the attention to detail, from the initial call to begin the process until the consultation, it was top caliber service. Very knowledgeable and courteous staff and the consultant was patient and attentive to make sure I understood everything. I learned so much in a short period. If you need help with immigration, this is the firm to call, don't fall for the gimmicky firms that just try to get you through the door.Thank you Bellissimo Law group
Vince Daniele
Vince Daniele
21:32 21 Jul 20
Was able to give creditable and professional advise. Very patient and I consider the best resource for all questions concerning immigration. Very responsive, as well. Highly recommend!
This Is
This Is
17:29 22 Jul 20