Case type codes on Canadian work permit documents

Every profession comes with unique jargon and acronyms. Of course, the Canadian immigration system is no exception. Some of these terms and abbreviations are easy to understand. However, some of them seem remote. Consequently, we have developed a glossary to assist you in understanding those concepts. Regardless, some terms deserve a standalone article. Case type codes on Canadian work permit documents are some of them.

What is a work permit document?

When foreign national intends to work in Canada, they need authorization. Sometimes, you may work in Canada without a work permit. However, you must hold a work permit in most circumstances. Unless you are already inside Canada, you receive your work permit document at a port of entry. Unless you may apply at the port of entry, you must already have approval from an immigration officer. The following image shows a highly redacted work permit sample. Regardless, I have used an old format work permit to prevent abuse. As you can see, one of the main elements of a work permit is a case-type code that appears in the middle of the document.

Case type codes on Canadian work permit documents

A typical code consists of two digits. I requested the codes from IRCC, and they shared the following list with me. However, this list may not be comprehensive.

Code Definition
 07  The US government
 08  The US government (dependent)
 20  Worker Not Elsewhere Specified
 21  Employment form
 22  Official status
 23  Entertainer
 24  Student
 25  Commuter
 26  National of a communist country
 27  Under application
 28  Under enforcement
 29  Refused application for permanent resident
 52  LMIA exempt
 54  Same employer or Subsequent open work permit
 56  Post Graduation work permit (PGWP)
 57  Live-in caregiver work permit
 58  International Experience Canada (IEC)
 59  Co-op work permit
60 Employer compliance exempt
 86  Others
 98  Seasonal worker (Mexico and the Caribbean)

Some of these codes seem outdated. For example, code 26 makes no sense in the 21st century. However, many of them are still in effect. The case-type codes help immigration authorities quickly understand the nature of the work permit. Of course, the officers could look into GCMS for more information. The GCMS is a giant database. Therefore, a glance at the code could answer many questions.

Helpful resources besides case type codes

Now that you are familiar with case-type codes on Canadian work permits, you may consider reading the following articles. Of course, I have cherry-picked some of the items that seem more relevant.

I have many other articles. However, you may also watch my educational videos on YouTube.

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    Updated: 2021-07-28

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    Al Parsai, MA, DTM, RCIC
    Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
    Ashton College Instructor – Immigration Consulting
    Author – 88 Tips on Immigration to Canada

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    This article provides information of a general nature only. Considering the fluid nature of the immigration world, it may no longer be current. Of course, the item does not give legal advice. Therefore, do not rely on it as legal advice or immigration advice. Consequently, no one could hold us accountable for the content of these articles. Of course, if you have specific legal questions, you must consult a lawyer. Alternatively, if you are looking for immigration advice, book an appointment.

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    Al Parsai

    Al Parsai is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (class L3 RCIC-IRB – Unrestricted Practice) in Toronto, Canada. He is an adjunct professor at Queen's University Law School and Ashton College. Al, who holds a Master of Laws (LLM) degree from York University, is a member of CICC and CAPIC organizations. Al, the CEO of Parsai Immigration Services, has represented thousands of applicants from more than 50 countries to the immigration authorities since January 2011.

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