As the unprecedented circumstances surrounding the outbreak of COVID-19 continue to evolve, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada announced a new policy to significantly reduce the time it takes for a temporary foreign worker to start a new job in Canada. The policy is effective immediately.
What this Means for Canadian Employers and Foreign Workers
A temporary foreign worker who is in Canada and has a new offer of employment can get approval to start work in their new position while their work permit application is pending. Typically work permit process in Canada, which entails a Labor Market Test, can take up to 10-12 weeks to complete. The new policy will streamline the adjudication of work permit applications to 8-10 days.
This policy will assist temporary foreign workers in Canada working pursuant to employer-specific work permits who have been laid off, as they will not need to wait for new work permit approval to start work in a new position.
To be eligible under this new policy, the foreign worker must meet the following requirements:
- Hold a valid, employment-specific work permit
- Must be filing an application for a work permit under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or the International Mobility Program.
Benefit to Employers
There are several sectors of the Canadian economy providing critical goods and services to Canadians during this time, including agriculture, agri-food, and health care services. This new policy will allow Canadian businesses to recruit and hire unemployed workers to help meet the demand for labor in these sectors of the Canadian economy.
Gibney is closely monitoring matters in Canada and will provide further updates as they are announced by Canada.