December 2, 2023

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Thinking to work in Canada? Here’s a guide on Canada Open Work Permit

TORONTO – Canada is an amazing country when it comes to quality of life and that is the reason why thousands of people migrate to the country every year.

If you also want to relocate to the country, here is the guide to let you move to the country with ease and perfection. For working in Canada, a work permit is needed. Work permits combine a visa and a permit that are both given at the same time to let people work in the country under standard guidelines and laws.

Although the country offers variety of work permits, an open work permit is the one most sought after for Canada and we will guide you details about this permit.

Canada Open Work Permit

A work permit that is open to all jobs is known as an open work permit or an international mobility program for Canada. This type of work permit is liberal in a sense that it allows an applicant to switch employers without affecting the permit.

This is in contrast to other work permits, which are only provided for the purpose of employment with a single employer.

In contrast to other work permits, the Open Work Permit exempts you from providing the following data:

Types of Open Work Permits

There are different kinds of Open Work Permit. For instance, it may completely be unrestricted or have some restrictions as the Canadian Consulate deems fit.

In general, there are 3 types of Open Work Permits:

  • Unrestricted work permits which allow you to change employers, occupation, and the location of work
  • Restricted work permits which allow you to change employer but do not allow you to change your occupation
  • Restricted work permits which allow you to change employer but do not allow you to change the location of work

Requirements for the Canada Open Work Permit?

You can only apply for an Open Work Permit if you are in one of the following groups:

  • Are an international student who graduated from a designated learning institution and are eligible for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program
  • Are a student who’s no longer able to meet the costs of your studies (destitute student)
  • Have an employer-specific work permit and are being abused or at risk of being abused in relation to your job in Canada
  • Applied for permanent residence in Canada
  • Are a dependent family member of someone who applied for permanent residence
  • Are the spouse, common-law partner or dependent child of a low- or high-skilled worker
  • Are the spouse or common-law partner of an international student
  • Are the spouse or common-law partner of an applicant of the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program
  • Are a refugee, refugee claimant, protected person or their family member
  • Are under an unenforceable removal order
  • Are a temporary resident permit holder
  • Are a young worker participating in special programs

If you fall in any category, you will have to meet other conditions as well for open work permit.

In addition to these, you must also ensure that you will leave Canada after your work permit expires and you must prove that you can finance your stay and your family’s stay in Canada and that you have enough funds to go back to your home country.

Moreover, in your application you must also show the proof that you have a clean criminal record and you are not a threat to the national security of Canada. Your medical health should be good as substantiated by proof and you must be willing to respect the conditions of your open work permit even if its under some conditions. 

It must be kept in mind that you must also prove that you will not work in professions banned legally in Canada like escort services etc.

Extension of Work Permit

You can also apply for an extension of the Open Work Permit or for your first Open Work Permit from inside Canada if you meet these requirements:

  • You have a Canadian study permit or an open work permit that will expire soon
  • You have a degree from a Canadian education institution
  • You are a temporary resident of Canada
  • You are awaiting the decision on your application for refugee status
  • You already have refugee or protected person status
  • Your application to get refugee status was denied but you cannot leave Canada for reasons beyond your control;

Apply for Canada Open Work Permit

The first and foremost thing that needs to be done is to get a job offer from a Canadian employer in order to qualify for a work permit application after which you can go to the Canadian Consulate in your home country or apply online.

You can an account and apply online or submit an application in hard form which includes:

  • IMM 1295 – Application for Work Permit Made Outside of Canada;
  • Schedule 1 – Application for Temporary Resident Visa;
  • IMM 5645 – Family Information Form;
  • IMM 5409 – Statutory Declaration of Common-Law Union (if applicable);
  • IMM 5476 – Use of Representative Form (if applicable);
  • IMM 5475 – Authority to Release Personal Information to a Designated Individual (if applicable);

If you are applying from outside Canada, then in the “Details of intended work in Canada” section of the IMM 1295 application form, choose “Open Work Permit” for question 1 and leave questions 2 to 6 blank

You should also submit supporting documents which include proof of current immigration status (if your country of residence is different from your country of citizenship), police record certificates, your education diplomas and certificates, copy of your marriage certificate (if applicable) and copy of children’s birth certificates (if applicable), Newsnowgh reported.

You might be asked to submit other additional documents as well as deemed appropriate by the Canadian embassy. 

Keep in mind that you might not be allowed to work in specific industries if you do not have a medical exam.

Visa interview

The officials of the Canadian Consulate might want to interview you to determine whether you are a right fit or not. You must attend the interview at the appointed time and answer their queries.

Processing Time

Canada’s Open Work Permit processing time can take 6 weeks depending on your country of citizenship.

Open Work Permit Fees

The Open Work Permit is slightly more expensive than an employer specific work permit which makes sense. You will have to pay an initial work permit application fee of CAD$155 and an Open Work Permit fee of CAD$100. 

Bringing dependents to Canada on Open Work Permit

Fortunately, you are allowed to bring your spouse or common law partner and minor children with you to Canada when you go to work there on an open permit. For this, you must include their documents in your application so as to be considered as a family.