Work in Canada without an LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment)

A foreign national who intends to come and work in Canada might be eligible to receive a work permit without an LMIA confirmation letter. The IMP (International Mobility Program) enables temporary foreign workers to receive work permits without an LMIA. In this Article, we will be introducing some LMIA exemptions under sections 204 and 205 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR). 

  • Section 204 of IRPR focuses on some International Agreements between Canada and other countries such as:
    • NAFTA– North American Free Trade Agreement (to be replaced by USMCA)
    • GATS– The General Agreement on Trade in Services (World Trade Organization- WTO)
    • FTA – (Free Trade Agreements with some countries such as Chile, Columbia, and Bermuda)
    • CETA– ( The Canada- European Union Comprehensive Trade Agreement)
  • Canadian Interests or fall under section 205 of IRPR. For example:

    • Significant contribution: The applicant must convince the officer that they have been internationally renown and they need to prove that their presence in Canada would highly impact a high-profile event and whether they are creating social, cultural or economic benefits to Canada.
    • Self-employed and entrepreneursForeign nationals applying to work for themselves or to operate their own business on a temporary basis must demonstrate that their admission to Canada to operate their business would generate significant economic, social or cultural benefits or opportunities for Canadian citizens or permanent residents. The applicant who plans to start its own business must prove that they will bring unique services in Canada to benefit Canadian consumers.  If the applicant intends to buy a business in Canada they can eventually stay on a permanent basis and apply for permanent residency. Before applying through this option the applicant must consider the following factors:
      • Is the work likely to create a viable business that will benefit Canadian or permanent resident workers or provide economic stimulus?
      • Does the applicant have a particular background or skills that will improve the viability of the business?
      • Is there a business plan that clearly shows that the applicant has taken steps to initiate their business?
      • Has the applicant taken some measure to put the business plan in action (showing evidence of having the financial ability to begin the business and pay expenditures, renting space, having a staffing plan, obtaining a business number, showing ownership documents or agreements, etc.)?
    • Intra-company transferees: This permit allows international companies to temporarily transfer qualified employees to Canada to create potency in a designated company, expanding Canadian exports and bringing economic value to the market.
    • Emergency repairs or repair personnel for out-of-warranty equipment 
    • Television and film production workers: Foreign nationals who are in the television and film industry and willing to start the same occupation in Canada must receive a letter of support from a television and production company in Canada. The applicant must satisfy the officer that the work is essential to a TV or film production company and would create significant economic benefits and opportunities for Canadian and permanent residents. 
    • Francophone mobilityThe federal government of Canada along with the Francophone minority community work to promote Francophone immigration outside of the province of Quebec. With the purpose of strengthening and supporting the social and cultural fabric of Canadian society while respecting the federal, bilingual and multicultural character of Canada.
    • Live-in caregivers whose permanent residence application is submitted
    • Bridging open work permits
    • Reciprocity: Allows foreign workers to take up employment in Canada when Canadians have similar reciprocal opportunities abroad (exchange agreement,  between the Canadian and foreign parties or the International Experience Canada program).
    • International Experience Canada (youth exchange programs): International Experience Canada (IEC) provides the opportunity to gain life-changing personal and professional experience by traveling and working abroad. Foreign nationals can participate in the program under three categories:
      • Working Holiday (France only summer jobs)
      • Young Professionals
      • International Co-op (Internship)
    • Academic exchanges (professors, visiting lecturers)
    • Performing artsThe entry of foreign nationals working in dance (such as ballet or contemporary), opera, orchestra or live theatre contributes to competitive advantages and reciprocal benefits for all Canadians, including Canadian performing artists and performing arts organizations.

If you have a job offer and wish to get a work permit to Canada you may fill out our free assessment form or a book a consultation session to assess your potential opportunities (if any).

Anahita Akhavan
Marketing Coordinator
Parsai Immigration Services

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“This article provides information of a general nature only. It may no longer be current. It does not provide legal advice nor should it be relied upon. If you have specific legal questions you should consult a lawyer. If you are looking for official immigration advice contact us.”


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Anahita Akhavan

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