IELTS for work permit in Canada | Language for foreign workers
A foreign worker who works in Canada must show their ability to do the job. Knowing one of the official languages of Canada could be an indication of this ability. However, do you need to take IELTS for a work permit in Canada? Let’s explore this question.
- Official languages and tests
- IELTS for a work permit
- When the job does not require knowledge of English or French languages
- Submitting test results upfront
- Minimum IELTS test results
- Ask your questions!
Canada has two official languages: French and English. Consequently, you need to know at least one of them when you are working in Canada. To prove your language abilities, you may only take the following tests.
- CELPIP: Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (Only CELPIP General is acceptable. Don’t take General-LS)
- IELTS: International English Language Testing System (Only IELTS General is acceptable. Don’t take IELTS Academic)
- TEF Canada: Test d’évaluation de français
- TCF Canada: Test de connaissance du français
Of course, you only need to take one test per language. However, if you don’t know one of the languages, there is no need to take any tests. For example, if you know the English language only, then take IELTS or CELPIP only. Moreover, the validity of each test is only two years.
Generally speaking, you may only work in Canada if you can perform the job. Paragraph 200(3)(a) of IRPR emphasizes this issue. Of course, knowing the local language reflects your capabilities. IRCC does consider the following factors to evaluate the language requirements:
- The content of your job offer (e.g., on the IMP application)
- The LMIA application (if applicable)
- The nature of the job
Officers’ focus is on your ability to do the job. Therefore, they don’t consider your ability to communicate outside the job environment. To evaluate your language skills, an officer may consider one or more of the following:
- The documents you have presented (e.g., your education credentials and the job offer)
- Conducting an interview
- Asking for a valid IELTS or other language test results
The first option is the most common one. However, the officers may consider the other two options.
Generally speaking, officers refuse an LMIA or work permit application that relies on non-official languages. Subsection 203(1.01) of IRPR emphasizes this issue. Therefore, it is risky to claim the job does not require any of the official languages of Canada. Nonetheless, on infrequent occasions, this could be the case. Regardless, you must present several documents to support your claim. I discourage my clients from making such a bold claim. When you work in Canada, you likely need some knowledge of English or French languages to work.
As I mentioned earlier, IELTS is not mandatory but could certainly help. Therefore, it is wise to take an IELTS General test and include your work permit application results. Of course, you may take any other tests from the list I posted earlier.
It is almost impossible to come up with any IELTS test results for a work permit in Canada. However, the following tables could give you some hints on best practices.
IELTS for NOC 0 and A work permits and those NOC B jobs that require communication skills
Look at the position requirements. For example, if communication plays an important role, it is in your best interest to have test scores equivalent to or higher than the following table. By the way, click here for more information on NOC. Nonetheless, this table is not an official guideline by the government.
IELTS for NOC C and D work permits and those NOC B jobs that require fewer communication skills
If communication does not play an important role, it is in your best interest to have test scores equivalent to or higher than the following table. Nevertheless, this table is not an official guideline by the government.
I must emphasize that neither of these tables is official.
If you have a broad question about immigration to Canada, fill out the following form. However, for specific questions, please book a consultation session with me. Alternatively, you may fill out our free assessment form.
If you wish to visit or move to Canada, please fill out our free assessment form. We will review it for free, but we will contact you only if we find an opportunity for you. Alternatively, you may book a consultation session. Consultation sessions are not free, but you will receive formal advice from a licensed practitioner.
Fill our Free Canada Immigration Assessment Form in your language!
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.
The characters and places in the articles:
All the characters and locations in the articles are fictional, unless otherwise clearly stated. Therefore, any resemblance in names, dates, and places is coincidental.
For our official addresses, trust this website only. We currently do not have offices outside Canada. Therefore, anyone who claims to be our agent is committing fraud. Also, note that we do not issue any work permits or study permits or similar documents. The government of Canada has the sole authority to issue such material.