Temporary Resident Status - FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions - Non Immigrant (also here and here)

Table of Contents

  • Part 1. Temporary Residents (Visitors)

    • 1.1 Visas, permits, passports
    • 1.2 Where to apply
    • 1.3 Processing applications
    • 1.4 Children, family
    • 1.5 Miscellaneous (visitors)
  • Part 2. Students / Temporary workers / Internships
  • Part 3. Students
  • Part 4. Temporary workers
  • Part 5. Miscellaneous

Part 1. Temporary Residents - Visitors

1.1 Visas, permits, passports

  • Who is considered to be a temporary resident of Canada?
  • What is a temporary resident visa (TRV)?
  • What is a work permit? What is a study permit?
  • What is the difference between a visa and a permit?
  • I need both a permit and a visa. What fees must I pay?
  • What is the difference between a single entry visa, a multiple entry visa and a transit visa?
  • How long is a multiple entry visa valid?
  • I plan to travel several times to the United States during my stay in Canada. Must I apply for a single or multiple entry visa?
  • How long does it take to process an application for a transit visa?
  • What documents must I present if I am just applying for a transit visa?
  • What does the expiry date on my visa mean?
  • How long does my passport have to be valid if I want to travel to Canada?
  • Does my passport have to be valid for 5 months after my stay in Canada?
  • Do I need a machine readable and / or a biometric passport to enter Canada?
  • My visa was issued in Paris. Can I travel to Canada from a country other than France?
  • How long can I stay in Canada as a tourist?

Who is considered to be a temporary resident of Canada?

A temporary resident is a foreign national who has been admitted to Canada for a temporary stay for tourism, family visit or on a business trip, or to work or study. The immigration officer at the point of entry to Canada (airport or border crossing) determines the length of stay authorized.

What is a temporary resident visa (TRV)?

A temporary resident visa is a visa which is placed in a foreign national’s passport or travel document, allowing him to travel to Canada once or several times during the validity of the visa. The decision to admit the foreign national, however, is made by the immigration officer at the point of entry to Canada (airport or border crossing).

Citizens of certain countries do not require a temporary resident visa to visit Canada. Consult the list of countries.

What is a work permit? What is a study permit?

A work permit or study permit gives a foreign national permission to work or study temporarily in Canada.

In most cases, the foreign national must apply to a Canadian Embassy abroad for a work permit or study permit before leaving for Canada. Once the application is accepted, the foreign national receives a letter informing him of the acceptance and authorizing him to proceed to Canada to work or study (or both). The permit itself is printed and given to the foreign national by the immigration officer at the point of entry to Canada (airport or border crossing).

The foreign national may also need a temporary resident visa (TRV) if he is a citizen of a country for whom a visa is required. Consult the list of countries.

What is the difference between a visa and a permit?

A visa is a counterfoil or sticker placed in a passport or travel document which allows a foreign national to travel to Canada. A permit is a document which confirms that the foreign national is authorized to work or to study in Canada. One or both may be required. One cannot be a substitute for the other.

I need both a permit and a visa. What fees must I pay?

You must pay the fees for the permit only. If you also require a visa, it will be included at no further charge.

If you are accompanied to Canada by a dependent (spouse, common-law partner, child) and that person requires a visa, you must also pay the processing fee for a temporary resident visa (single or multiple entry) for your dependent.

For the fee schedule - PDF * (248 KB).

What is the difference between a single entry visa, a multiple entry visa and a transit visa?

A single entry visa allows one entry only to Canada, during the validity of the visa.

A multiple entry visa allows several entries to Canada, during the validity of the visa.

A transit visa allows entry to Canada for a short stop-over (maximum 48 hours) en route to another country. If your return travel is also through Canada, you should request a transit visa valid for 2 entries.

IMPORTANT : The validity of a temporary resident visa can never exceed the validity of the passport.

How long is a multiple entry visa valid?

The validity of a multiple entry visa is determined by the visa officer who examines the application. The validity of the visa cannot exceed the validity of the passport.

I plan to travel several times to the United States during my stay in Canada. Must I apply for a single or multiple entry visa?

A single entry visa will allow you to re-enter Canada several times after travel to the United States or to Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, as long as it is within the period authorized by the immigration officer when you first enter Canada or the period authorized by an extension of your status. This is no longer true once you leave Canada, the United States or Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon for another country.

You must contact the Embassy of the United States for information on entry to that country (visa requirements and applications, passport validity, etc.).

How long does it take to process an application for a transit visa?

The requirements for processing a transit visa are the same as for any other temporary resident visa. The processing time is also the same. Consult the information aboutprocessing times.

What documents must I present if I am just applying for a transit visa?

You must complete the same form and present the same documents as for any other temporary resident visa. You must also include documents concerning your travel arrangements (reservation or ticket). There are no fees for transit visas. Consult the information about Temporary Resident Visas.

What does the expiry date on my visa mean?

The expiry date on the top line of the visa is the date by which you must arrive in Canada, not the date by which you must leave Canada.

How long does my passport have to be valid if I want to travel to Canada?

The passport must be valid for at least one day beyond your stay in Canada.

Does my passport have to be valid for 5 months after my stay in Canada?

No, the passport must be valid for at least one day beyond your stay in Canada.

Do I need a machine readable and / or a biometric passport to enter Canada?

A machine readable and / or a biometric passport is not required to enter Canada.

My visa was issued in Paris. Can I travel to Canada from a country other than France?

Yes. You may enter Canada from any point of departure and through any point of entry (airport or border crossing).

How long can I stay in Canada as a tourist?

When you arrive in Canada, the immigration officer will decide whether you can be admitted to Canada and, if he is satisfied that you intend to stay only temporarily, will decide how long you are allowed to stay. Unless otherwise specified, you are authorized to stay up to six months. You must leave Canada by that date or else, at least 30 daysbefore that date, apply to prolong your status.

Consult the information on general conditions for admission to Canada as a visitor or temporary resident.

Consult the information on how to apply for an extension of your status in Canada.

1.2 Where can I apply?

  • I live in the Dom Tom. Where can I submit my application?
  • I am on holiday and am spending just a few days in Spain, Belgium, Switzerland etc. Can I submit my application to Paris or must I apply in the country where I usually reside?
  • I am in Algeria. Can I apply directly to Paris to save time?
  • Do I always have to come to the Embassy in person when I apply for a temporary resident visa?
  • If I submit my application inperson rather than by mail,can I get my visa the same day?
  • Do I need an appointment to submit an application for a temporary resident visa, work permit or study permit to the Canadian Embassy in Paris?

I live in the Dom Tom. Where can I submit my application?

For Martinique, Guadeloupe or French Guyana: Canadian Embassy, Port-au-Prince, Haïti.

For French Polynesia, Wallis and Futuna and New Caledonia: Canadian High Commission,Sydney, Australia.

For Reunion Island and Mayotte:
Canadian High Commission, P.O. Box 1013, 00621, Nairobi, Kenya

For Saint-Pierre et Miquelon : Canadian Embassy, New York, USA.

You may also submit your application to the Canadian Embassy in Paris. However, given the geographical distance of the DOM TOM, we cannot guarantee that the application will be processed in the normal timeframe. Also, if an interview is required, it must be held in the office where the application was submitted.

I am on holiday and am spending just a few days in Spain, Belgium, Switzerland etc. Can I submit my application to Paris or must I apply in the country where I usually reside?

Although it is preferable to submit your application for a temporary resident visa (TRV) to the office responsible for the country where you usually reside, you may submit it to Paris. Consult the list of countries and the corresponding visa offices.

I am in Algeria. Can I apply directly to Paris to save time?

You may present an application to the Canadian Embassy in Paris only if you apply in person. Otherwise, you must submit your application to the Canadian Embassy in Algiers.

Do I always have to come to the Embassy in person when I apply for a temporary resident visa?

You may submit your application by mail or in person. If you send in your application and an officer decides that an interview is necessary, you will receive a letter inviting you to come to the Embassy.

If I submit my application in person rather than by mail, can I get my visa the same day?

A visa can usually be issued the same day. For citizens of certain countries or in more complex cases (if further documents are required, if authorization must be requested from Canada, etc.) the processing can take several days, even several weeks

Consult the fee schedule

Do I need an appointment to submit an application for a temporary resident visa, work permit or study permit to the Canadian Embassy in Paris ?

No appointments are given for this type of application. Please check whether you may submit your application in person and, if so, come to the Embassy with your complete application during our opening hours.

1.3 Processing Applications

  • Is an invitation stating that my expenses will be paid for me sufficient as proof of my financial situation?
  • The person who will be applying for a temporary resident visa or permit is financially dependent on me. What documents must he or she submit ?
  • I wish to invite a friend or relative to visit me in Canada. That person needs a temporary resident visa (TRV). What document do I have to provide in support of his or her application?
  • What should be included in the letter of invitation?
  • How are passports returned once an application has been processed?
  • What to do if my application for a temporary resident visa has been refused?

Is an invitation stating that my expenses will be paid for me sufficient as proof of my financial situation?

When an applicaton for a temporary resident visa, work permit or study permit is processed, the applicant’s general financial situation is taken into account. You must therefore submit proof of your own financial situation. If you are financially dependent on someone, you must provide a written undertaking from that person which explains your relationship, along with proof of that person’s financial situation. For more information, please refer to the instructions on the application form.

The person who will be applying for a temporary resident visa or permit is financially dependent on me. What documents must he or she submit ?

The applicant must submit a letter, signed by you, which states that you are financially responsible for him or her and which explains your relationship. This must be accompanied by proof of your financial situation. For more information, please refer to the instructions on the application form.

I wish to invite a friend or relative to visit me in Canada. That person needs a temporary resident visa (TRV). What document do I have to provide in support of his or her application?

You must send him or her a letter of invitation to be submitted along with the application. Do not sent the letter of invitation directly to the Embassy.

What should be included in the letter of invitation?

Consult the information on how to prepare a letter of invitation.

How are passports returned once an application has been processed?

Passports are returned by registered mail to the mailing address indicated on the application form. If you wish to use the services of a private courrier company, you must make the arrangements yourself and include a return enveloppe with the waybill mentioning “prepaid” or “bill recipient” in your application package. Your account number must appear on the waybill if you are to be billed for the delivery.

What to do if my application for a temporary resident visa has been refused?

Consult the information on general conditions for admission to Canada as a visitor or temporary resident.

1.4 Children, Family Members

  • I will be travelling to Canada with a minor child who is not my son or daughter. What must I do before I leave?
  • My minor child will be travelling alone to Canada. He or she does not need a visa. What must he present along with his passport?
  • I am a French citizen and wish to go to Canada for tourism. I will be travelling with my adopted child who does not have a French passport. What should I do ?
  • I am a Canadian citizen. I have just adopted a child who is not Canadian and I wish to bring my child with me to Canada. What should I do ?
  • I am in Canada as a tourist. My fiancé(e) is a Canadian citizen and wishes to sponsor me to become a permanent resident. Can I stay in Canada in the meantime ? What should I do to make sure my status is legal?

I will be travelling to Canada with a minor child who is not my son or daughter. What must I do before I leave?

Consult the information on travel with minor children.

Determine whether the child needs a temporary resident visa.

My minor child will be travelling alone to Canada. He or she does not need a visa. What must he present along with his passport?

Consult the information on travel with minor children.

I am a French citizen and wish to go to Canada for tourism. I will be travelling with my adopted child who does not have a French passport. What should I do ?

Consult the information on travel with minor children.

Determine whether the child needs a temporary resident visa.

I am a Canadian citizen. I have just adopted a child who is not Canadian and I wish to bring my child with me to Canada. What should I do ?

If you plan to stay in Canada, you must submit a family class sponsorship for the child.

If you and the child are going to Canada for a short period of time, consult the information on travel with minor children. Determine whether the child needs a Temporary Resident Visa.

 

I am in Canada as a tourist. My fiancé(e) is a Canadian citizen and wishes to sponsor me to become a permanent resident. Can I stay in Canada in the meantime ? What should I do to make sure my status is legal?

Since you are already in Canada, you should contact Citizenship and Immigration in Canada.

1.5 Miscellaneous

  • I have already submitted an application for permanent residence. It is now being processed. Can I apply for a temporary resident visa?
  • I am retired. I wish to buy a home in Canada and go there regularly as a tourist. Are there any particular requirements for this?
  • We live in Europe but want to get married in Canada. We don’t want to live in Canada, just celebrate our wedding there. Is it possible?
  • Do I have to take out medical insurance for my stay in Canada?

I have already submitted an application for permanent residence. It is now being processed. Can I apply for a temporary resident visa?

The fact that you have applied for permanent residence does not prevent you from applying for a temporary resident visa to visit Canada. However, as for all other applicants, the visa officer must be satisfied that you intend to leave Canada at the end of the authorized period.

I am retired. I wish to buy a home in Canada and go there regularly as a tourist. Are there any particular requirements for this?

It is possible for a foreign national to buy property in Canada, but that does not give the right to enter or to reside in Canada.

If you wish to go to Canada as a temporary resident (tourist), consult the information ongeneral conditions for admission to Canada.

If you wish to become a permanent resident of Canada, consult the information onimmigrating to Canada.

We live in Europe but want to get married in Canada. We don’t want to live in Canada, just celebrate our wedding there. Is it possible?

Marriage laws in Canada vary among different provinces and territories. There are special requirements for non-residents. Consult the government of Canada website which includes links to the websites of all the provinces and territories.

Consult the information on general conditions for admission to Canada.

Do I have to take out medical insurance for my stay in Canada?

Medical costs can be very high in Canada. We strongly recommend that you take out insurance valid for your entire stay in Canada.

Part 2. Students – Temporary Workers – Internships

  • What is a letter of authorization?
  • My application for a work permit or study permit is now being processed at the Canadian Embassy, but I am supposed to start my job or my studies soon. Can I go to Canada and start working or studying?
  • Will I have to undergo a medical examination? Can you send me the list of doctors?
  • I received my permit but have a new passport. Do I have to send you a photocopy of my new passport? Will I receive a new letter of authorization?
  • Do I have to have a return ticket or can I purchase a one-way ticket for Canada?
  • When I entered Canada, the immigration officer gave me a Visitor Record form (IMM1097B) or a Work Permit (IMM1208B) or a Study Permit IMM1102B). On it is written « Does not authorize re-entry. » What does that mean?
  • I am in Canada and my status as a temporary resident, student or temporary worker will soon expire. How can I prolong my status?
  • I have a work permit or study permit for Canada. I would like my spouse or common-law partner to come with me or join me in Canada. What status will he or she have? Can he or she get a work permit?
  • How can I prove that my partner and I are in a common-law relationship?
  • I wish to do an internship in Canada. What should I do?
  • I am a student in a European educational institution but I am not a citizen of a European country. I want to do a work term or internship in Canada. What should I do?

What is a letter of authorization?

A letter of authorization is a letter, issued on letterhead of the Canadian Embassy, confirming that your work permit or study permit has been approved. The letter informs you that you may travel to Canada to work or study (or both). You must present the letter of authorization to the immigration officer at the point of entry to Canada (airport, border crossing, etc.). The actual work permit or study permit will be printed and given to you by the officer there.

My application for a work permit or study permit is now being processed at the Canadian Embassy, but I am supposed to start my job or my studies soon. Can I go to Canada and start working or studying?

You must wait to receive the letter of introduction for the temporary work permit or study permit before making any definitive arrangements for your departure.  If you arrive at the point of entry to Canada without the letter of introduction, you will probably be refused admission and have to pay for another plane ticket.
 
If you decide to travel to Canada before receiving the letter of introduction for the temporary work permit  or study permit, the decision whether to admit you to Canada as a temporary resident (visitor) will be made by the officer at the point of entry.  The officer will also determine the length of stay authorized.  If you arrive without the letter of introduction, the officer will most likely determine that you are not admissible, since according to Canadian immigration legislation you must apply for and be authorized to obtain a work permit  or study permit before entering Canada.  
 
If you are in Canada when you receive the letter of introduction, you will have to leave the country and re-enter in order to obtain the work permit or study permit.  This can be at a border crossing with the United States.

Will I have to undergo a medical examination? Can you send me the list of doctors?

We cannot determine whether a medical examination will be necessary until we have received your complete application. Once we receive your application, if a medical examination is required we will send you the form, instructions and list of designated medical practitioners (DMP).

Please note that for reasons of program integrity, DMPs will not perform a medical examination for visa and permit purposes without an official form, with an identity photo of the applicant, issued by our office. You must wait to receive the form before undergoing the medical examination.

I received my permit but have a new passport. Do I have to send you a photocopy of my new passport? Will I receive a new letter of authorization?

If you do not need a temporary resident visa (TRV) in addition to the work or study permit, you do not need to send us a photocopy of the new passport. You can travel to Canada.

If, however, you need a temporary resident visa (TRV), we need your new passport so that we can issue a new visa. You can send it to our office or bring it in person during ouropening hours.

Do I have to have a return ticket or can I purchase a one-way ticket for Canada?

There is no legal obligation to have a return ticket. However, we strongly recommend you have a return ticket if you are planning to stay less than one year in Canada. It will confirm your intention to stay in Canada temporarily. All students and temporary workers must demonstrate that they can pay for their return to their home country or for their travel to a third country at the end of their stay.

Please note also that airlines may require that you have a return ticket.

When I entered Canada, the immigration officer gave me a Visitor Record form (IMM1097B) or a Work Permit (IMM1208B) or a Study Permit (IMM1102B). On it is written « Does not authorize re-entry. » What does that mean?

That means that the document alone will not allow you to re-enter Canada if you leave. You must also have a valid passport. If you require a temporary resident visa (TRV), you must also have a visa that is valid at the time you wish to return to Canada. The permit or visitor record does not take the place of a visa.

Please note that at any time during the validity of your work or study permit, you may re-enter Canada after a trip to the United States or to Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon only, even if you do not have a valid visa. If you re-enter Canada from any other destination, you must have a valid visa if one is required. Consult the list of countries whose citizens require visas.

I am in Canada and my status as a temporary resident, student or temporary worker will soon expire. How can I prolong my status?

If you wish to prolong your stay in Canada, either as a tourist or to continue working or studying, you must apply to extend your stay at least 30 days before the expiry of your current status. You can contact the Citizenship and Immigration call centre at 1-888-242-2100 or consult the information on extending your stay. CDT Vegreville, 6212, 55th Avenue, Vegreville, Alberta T9C 1W5 CANADA.

I have a work permit or study permit for Canada. I would like my spouse or common-law partner to come with me or join me in Canada. What status will he or she have? Can he or she get a work permit?

Your spouse or common-law partner will have temporary resident status (visitor status) for the duration of your authorized stay so long as he or she meets the conditions for admission to Canada.

The spouse or common-law partner of a study permit holder can obtain a work permit under certain conditions.

The spouse or common-law partner of a work permit holder can obtain a work permit undercertain conditions.

Please note that this possibility does not apply within the framework of the Youth Mobility Programs where each dependant is responsible for obtaining his/her own status in Canada.

If these conditions apply, the application can be submitted either to the Canadian Embassy abroad or once your spouse or common-law partner is in Canada. A marriage certificate or proof of your common-law relationship will be required.

How can I prove that my partner and I are in a common-law relationship?

A common-law partner is, in relation to a person, an individual who is cohabiting with the person in a conjugal relationship, having so cohabited for a period of at least one year.

As proof of your relationship you may submit documents such as :

- joint bank account statements
- proof of co-ownership
- a lease in both your names
- phone, gas or electrical bills in both your names
- official documents indicating the same address for both of you (e.g. driver’s license, insurance policy, etc.)

If you have signed a "PACS" in France but have not cohabited as a couple for at least one year, you will not be considered common-law partners for Canada. Therefore, you will have to indicate your marital status as "Never Married" or other, as applicable, as per Canadian Citizenship and Immigration regulations.

You can also attach the IMM5409 declaration form - PDF * (140 KB).

I wish to do an internship in Canada. What should I do?

Obtain more information on work terms, internships, on-the-job training and summer jobs.

I am a student in a European educational institution but I am not a citizen of a European country. I want to do a work term or internship in Canada. What should I do?

The Embassy can usually issue a work permit for a work term or internship related to a person’s studies only in the context of a bilateral agreement between Canada and another country. Such agreements are based on reciprocity and only citizens of the signatory countries are eligible.

However, certain educational institutions abroad have signed specific exchange agreements with educational institutions in Canada. We suggest you find out whether such an agreement exists for the institution in which you are enrolled. If it does, please submit a copy of the agreement along with your application for a work permit.

Part 3. Students

  • How can I enroll in a school or university in Canada?
  • How can I get information about scholarships in Canada?
  • I wish to study in the province of Quebec. My application for a “Certificat d’acceptation du Québec” (CAQ) is being processed. Can I submit my application for a study permit to the Canadian Embassy now and send my CAQ later?
  • I am going to Canada with a study permit and would like to have a casual job as well. Is this allowed?
  • I would like to look after children as an “au-pair” while studying in Canada ? Is this possible?
  • My minor child is going alone to Canada to study. Are there any particular requirements?
  • I wish to do an internship in Canada. What should I do?
  • I am a student in a European educational institution but I am not a citizen of a European country. I want to do a work term or internship in Canada. What should I do?

How can I enroll in a school or university in Canada?

Obtain information on education in Canada.

How can I get information about scholarships in Canada?

Obtain information on scholarships in Canada.

I wish to study in the province of Quebec. My application for a “Certificat d’acceptation du Québec” (CAQ) is being processed. Can I submit my application for a study permit to the Canadian Embassy now and send my CAQ later?

You may send us your application before receiving the Certificat d'acceptation du Québec (CAQ).  If you have received a scanned copy of the CAQ you may attach it to your application, without waiting to receive the original.  If you have received an email informing you that the CAQ has been issued, you may attach it to your application, without waiting to receive the scanned copy or the original. Please note that your application will not be finalized until the CAQ is issued.  You can inform us of the issuance of the CAQ by sending an email to paris-im.visitor@international.gc.ca with STUDY PERMIT: CAQ ISSUED in the title and including your family name, given name, date of birth and the date at which the study permit application was sent to our office or your file number if you know it, and attaching the scanned copy of the CAQ or the email you received confirming its issuance.

 I am going to Canada with a study permit and would like to have a casual job as well. Is this allowed?

Study permit holders are allowed to work only under certain conditions.

I would like to look after children as an “au-pair” while studying in Canada ? Is this possible?

It is not possible to work as an “au-pair” in Canada.

The only possibility for this type of work is on a full-time basis as a Live-in Caregiver.

My minor child is going alone to Canada to study. Are there any particular requirements?

Consult the information on minor children studying in Canada.

I wish to do an internship in Canada. What should I do?

Obtain more information on work terms, internships, on-the-job training and summer jobs.

I am a student in a European educational institution but I am not a citizen of a European country. I want to do a work term or internship in Canada. What should I do?

The Embassy can usually issue a work permit for a work term or internship related to a person’s studies only in the context of a bilateral agreement between Canada and another country. Such agreements are based on reciprocity and only citizens of the signatory countries are eligible.

However, certain educational institutions abroad have signed specific exchange agreements with educational institutions in Canada. We suggest you find out whether such an agreement exists for the institution in which you are enrolled. If it does, please submit a copy of the agreement along with your application for a work permit.

Part 4. Temporary Workers

  • I would like to find a job in Canada. Do you have a list of job offers? In what fields is there the most demand?
  • I am a tour escort and I am preparing a trip to Canada for a group of tourists. Do I need a work permit?
  • I have a work permit for Canada. How can I get a Social Insurance Number (SIN)?
  • Who is allowed to work in Canada without a work permit?
  • I have been offered a post-doctoral fellowship in Canada. What type of authorization do I need?
  • Can I work through a temporary employment agency in Canada? Can I work in Canada on a free-lance or self-employed basis?
  • I am currently a full-time student in Canada in an undergraduate or master’s program at university. I would like to work in Canada during my summer holidays. Is this possible?
  • I am in Canada with a work permit and I pay towards unemployment insurance. If I lose my job, am I eligible for unemployment insurance benefits?

I would like to find a job in Canada. Do you have a list of job offers? In what fields is there the most demand?

We cannot help with your job search. You may, however, wish to consult the following websites :

I am a tour escort and I am preparing a trip to Canada for a group of tourists. Do I need a work permit?

If you are travelling to Canada from another country with the group, escorting them during all of their stay and leaving Canada with them, you do not need a work permit.

If you are going to be in Canada to welcome the group, a work permit is required. It can be issued only if you have a job offer confirmed by a federal government employment office. Obtain more information on temporary work permits with confirmed job offers.

I have a work permit for Canada. How can I get a Social Insurance Number (SIN)?

Consult the information on obtaining a Social Insurance Number.

Who is allowed to work in Canada without a work permit?

For certain persons and certain work situations, a work permit is not required.

I have been offered a post-doctoral fellowship in Canada. What type of authorization do I need?

If you are admitted to a Canadian university for doctoral studies you need a study permit.

If you already have a doctorate – or are about to defend your thesis or dissertation – and have been offered a post-doctoral fellowship, you need a work permit. This type of offer does not have to be confirmed by a federal government employment office. You can apply directly to the Canadian Embassy. You must include proof that you have obtained your doctorate or that a date has been set for your thesis defense.

Can I work through a temporary employment agency in Canada? Can I work in Canada on a free-lance or self-employed basis?

You can do this type of work if you obtain an open work permit, that is a permit which does not specify a particular job or employer (e.g. Working Holiday Programme, work permit for the spouse or common-law partner of a foreign student or or a highly qualified worker).

In all other cases, a work permit is issued only for a specific job with a specific employer.

I am currently a full-time student in Canada in an undergraduate or master’s program at university. I would like to work in Canada during my summer holidays. Is this possible?

If you are a French citizen :

The new agreement between France and Canada to facilitate and increase youth mobility applies only to French citizens who are in France when they submit their work permit applications. Neither the agreement, nor Canadian immigration regulations, allows for issuing a work permit abroad for an applicant who is already in Canada.

That being said, the two following possibilities may apply:

1. If you are back in France at the beginning of your holidays, even for a short period, you may submit an application for a work permit under the terms of the agreement. You should submit the application in person to the Canadian Embassy.

2. If a work-term or internship is required as part of your course of studies in Canada, you can apply for a work permit from within Canada. This type of application must be submitted to the Case Processing Centre in Vegreville.

If you are a citizen of a country other than France :

Obtain information concerning work opportunities for foreign students.

I am in Canada with a work permit and I pay towards unemployment insurance. If I lose my job, am I eligible for unemployment insurance benefits?

In general, a work permit is for a specific job with a specific employer. If you lose that job, you cannot be hired for a different job with a different employer. As unemployment benefits are for persons looking for a job in Canada, you would not be eligible for unemployment insurance benefits.

If you are offered a new job, you must apply for authorization to change the conditions of your stay in Canada.

Part 5. Miscellaneous

  • How can I determine what my diplomas and academic qualifications are equivalent to in Canada?
  • What are the rules for bringing household pets into Canada?
  • Do you have any advice about bringing or sending my personal belongings to Canada?
  • I am going to Canada for a temporary stay. Will my foreign driver’s license be valid?
  • Do you have a list of accommodation in Canada?
  • I have worked in Canada. What should I do about my income tax ? Where must I pay?
  • I worked for several years in Canada. Am I eligible for Canadian retirement pension?
  • I had some trouble at a point of entry to Canada (e.g. detention, authorization to leave, departure order, deportation order, exclusion order). Is there anything I have to do before returning to Canada?

How can I determine what my diplomas and academic qualifications are equivalent to in Canada?

Obtain information on foreign credential evaluations.

What are the rules for bringing household pets into Canada?

Obtain information on pet imports.

Do you have any advice about bringing or sending my personal belongings to Canada?

Obtain information on personal effects.

I am going to Canada for a temporary stay. Will my foreign driver’s license be valid?

Obtain information on international drivers’ licenses.

Do you have a list of accommodation in Canada?

We cannot help with your search for accommodation. Obtain information about housing in Canada.

I have worked in Canada. What should I do about my income tax ? Where must I pay?

You should contact the income tax authorities in your home country as well as in Canada. Obtain information about income tax for non-residents of Canada.

I worked for several years in Canada. Am I eligible for Canadian retirement pension?

Obtain information on the Canada Pension Plan and international benefits.

I had some trouble at a point of entry to Canada (e.g. detention, authorization to leave, departure order, deportation order, exclusion order). Is there anything I have to do before returning to Canada?

In order to answer your question, a visa officer will have to review your situation. Please send an explanatory letter to our office, by mail or by fax, giving your family name, given name, date of birth. Make sure to indicate your complete mailing address and telephone number. We will inform you of any procedures required.

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