Work permits for provincial nominees

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by CIC staff. It is posted on the CIC website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

Temporary foreign workers provincially selected

Under the terms of Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Annexes that have been negotiated with certain provinces and territories, they have the authority to have the requirement for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) waived for work permit applicants named in a written request from the province or territory. This authority is based onparagraph 204(c) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR). Provisions respecting this authority might vary slightly from province to province and for greater certainty the wording in the appropriate annex should be referred to.

Currently, Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia, Nova Scotia and Yukon Territory have such agreements in effect. They can be found at the following links:

These annexes will end in June 2015, with the exception of British Columbia’s annex that expires in April 2015 (see section Microsoft Centre of Excellence Project below).

It is anticipated that new TFW annexes or agreements will be negotiated with the provinces and territories.

Role of the provinces and territories

In exercising its R204(c) authority, a province or territory will provide the applicant with a letter containing the necessary details such as the name and birth date of the individual selected for the specific job, information about the employer and place of work, the duration of the job, and how it fits in with the employer's broader operations [seesample letter (DOC, 15 KB)]. A copy of this letter will be attached to each TFW’s application and, upon receipt at a visa office or at a port of entry, the application shall be assessed as per usual procedures.

Temporary foreign worker provincially selected (TFW-PS) do not require a nomination certificate.

General work permit instructions for TFW-PS

TFW-PS applications shall be processed like other TFW work permit applications, on a first come first served basis.

Remarks field

“TFW-PS” should be entered in the Remarks field to facilitate differentiating between this selection type and the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) selection type.

Foreign workers nominated by a province or territory

See the chapter OP 7b (PDF, 222 KB) for more information.

A person who has a valid nomination from a province or territory for permanent residence and is employed or has a job offer from an employer based in that province may be issued a work permit without requiring an LMIA.

In order for this provision to be applied, the application for the work permit must include:

  • the job offer or employment contract;
  • a copy of the nomination letter from the provincial or territorial government that confirms that the foreign national has been nominated for permanent residence by the province,
    • if the nomination is expired, a copy of the acknowledgement letter confirming that CIC received the PNP application while the nomination was still valid; and
  • a statement from the province that it has determined that all factors required for the issuance of a work permit under paragraph 204(c) as per its agreement with Canada have been met, and identifying the occupation and employer information. The required factors include:
    • that the nominated individual is urgently required by the provincial-based employer who has made the foreign national a job offer in that province or territory (it should be noted that self-employed persons are therefore not eligible for this type of work permit given the lack of employer-employee relationship),
    • that the job offer is genuine and the job offer will create economic benefits or opportunities,
    • that the employment is not part-time or seasonal, and
    • that the wages and working conditions of the employment would be sufficient to attract and retain Canadian citizens.

Applications that do not include the requested information will be refused. Persons whose nominations have expired, but who submitted an application for permanent residence before the expiry date of the nomination and are waiting for their acknowledgement of receipt of the permanent residence application letter from CIC should either delay their application for a work permit under this provision until its receipt, or seek an extension of their certificate to the nominating jurisdiction or obtain an LMIA.

Instructions for processing officers

The duration of the work permit should be equivalent to the duration of the job offer. “PNP” should be entered in theRemarks field to facilitate differentiating between this selection type and the TFW-PS selection type.

Note: If there are any obvious potential medical or security concerns, these should be dealt with before any work permit is issued.

Note: It is not necessary that the application for permanent residence of the foreign national has been received by CIC for the work permit to be issued, unless the nomination is expired. In that case, a copy of the acknowledgement letter confirming that CIC received a PNP permanent residence application should be provided with the work permit application. Officers may wish to verify the PNP application in the Global Case Management System (GCMS) to ensure that the nomination has not been withdrawn by the province or that no adverse information is found on the file.

Spouses or common-law partners of work permit holders who have been nominated for permanent residence by a province will be entitled to open work permits for the duration of the work permit of the provincial nominee principal applicant, irrespective of the skill level of the principal applicant’s occupation.

For provinces or territories without nominee agreements (e.g., Nunavut and Quebec), the legislative authority for the exemption is paragraph 205(a).

See also:

  • Opportunities Ontario, a PNP initiative that facilitates the issuance of open work permits for Masters and PhD graduates who have been nominated by the province of Ontario; and
  • Quebec’s initiative to facilitate work permits renewals for certain Certificat de sélection du Québec (Quebec Selection Certificate) holders residing in the province of Quebec.

Section 5.27 of FW 1 deals with the issuance of work permits to provincial nominees. Under 
R204(c), work permits can be issued to prospective or actual provincial nominees. The applicant 
must present a letter from the province stating that they have been nominated and requesting a 
work permit. It is not necessary for the visa office to have received the nominee’s application for 
permanent residence before issuing a work permit. Spouses of provincial nominees are entitled to 
open work permits regardless of the skill level of the principal applicant.

Extend your work permit – Economic class applicants

Qualifying applicants currently in Canada who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)Canadian Experience Class (CEC)Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) or the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) may be considered for an open work permit if their current work permit will soon expire.

To be eligible for a bridging open work permit, you must:

  • Currently be in Canada;
  • Have valid status on a work permit that is due to expire within 4 months;
  • Have received confirmation from CIC that your permanent resident application is eligible under one of the four economic classes (FSWP, CEC, PNP and FSTP), and;
  • Have made an application for an open work permit.