Foreign nationals in Canada who wish to extend their Labor Market Opinion (LMO) based work permits are usually required to obtain a new LMO and submit an application to extend the conditions of their stay in Canada.
As of December 15, 2012, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has introduced a new option for foreign nationals who are in Canada and have received a positive eligibility assessment under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Canadian Experience Class (CEC), Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), or Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP). Individuals who are awaiting the final approval of their applications under these programs are now eligible for a Bridging Open Work Permit.
Open Work Permits allow foreign nationals to work for any employer in Canada and do not require the additional step of acquiring an LMO.
The basic eligibility requirements are as follows:
- The foreign national is currently in Canada;
- The foreign national has valid status on a Work Permit that is due to expire within 4 months;
- The foreign national has received a positive eligibility assessment on their PR application under the FSWP, CEC, PNP, or FSTP streams; and
- The foreign national has specifically made an application for an open Work Permit
It is important to note that there are no transitional provisions for this new stream. Thus, applications received before December 15, 2012 will be processed under the previous requirements.
If granted, this Open Work Permit will be valid for 1 year, by which time CIC is estimating that most applications will be fully processed. Extensions may be granted on these Open Work Permits on a case-by-case basis, as necessary.
To determine if you can take advantage of this new work permit option please contact Green and Spiegel.