Work in Canada without authorization | Working illegally

In this article, I explore work in Canada without authorization. I also talk about the scenarios that could result in illegal work in Canada. Moreover, I explain the consequences for the employers and employees.

Who has the authorization to work in Canada?

Generally speaking, Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada may work anywhere in our country. Nonetheless, they may not engage in prohibited jobs and criminal activities. They could face fines and prison time in those situations. Moreover, certain criminal activities could make permanent residents of Canada inadmissible. Consequently, they may lose their PR status.

If you are a foreign national, you may still work in Canada. However, you must meet one of the following conditions:

If you do not meet the conditions, you work in Canada without authorization. Consequently, you are operating illegally.

The consequences of working without authorization

As an unauthorized worker, you are in breach of the Immigration Act. The immediate outcome is inadmissibility under subsection 41(a) of IRPA. Consequently, you will receive an Exclusion Order. You have to leave Canada. However, you may return if you receive an ARC or if at least one year passes from your departure. Of course, unless you are a US citizen, you still need a TRV or an eTA to go back to Canada.

Sometimes the situation could get complicated. Thus, you could face other problems such as inadmissibility because of criminality or misrepresentation. Consult with a practitioner for more information.

The consequences of hiring an unauthorized worker

Employers who hire workers without authorization breach paragraph 124(1)(c) of IRPA. Consequently, they could face up to two years in prison and up to $50,000 in fines. Of course, the final say is by a judge. Moreover, if the employer is a foreign national or a PR, they could face inadmissibility issues.

Work in Canada without authorization for work permit holders

Work permit holders must obey the conditions imposed on their work permits. Here are some examples:

Of course, it is up to the authorities to impose the restrictions. Regardless, if you do not follow the conditions, you are working without authorization.

Working in Canada without authorization for study permit holders

Almost all minor international students may not work in Canada. Also, other students may face restrictions. For example,

These are some examples. Review your study permit or consult with a professional to know your limitations. Nevertheless, if you do not obey these restrictions, you work without authorization.

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If you doubt your options, book a consultation session with me. Alternatively, you may fill out the following form. Of course, to explore your immigration options, please fill out our assessment form.

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    Al Parsai, LLM, MA, DTM, RCIC
    Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
    Adjunct Professor – Queen’s University – Faculty of Law
    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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