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Canada is one of the few countries inthe Western World that is actively looking for immigrants, with over 250,000 new immigrants arriving in Canada every year. Independent immigration to Canada used to take a long time to process, meaning directly sponsoring a migrant worker was often the only viable option. However, in January 2015, Canada overhauled their immigration and work permit rules by launching the Express Entry system for hiring skilled long-term workers and reformed the rules for hiring temporary workers too.
Express Entry is aimed at skilled workers and allows employers to select potential employees from a pool of candidates. The system ranks potential migrants according to factors such as their skills, work experience, English and French language ability, and education.
It usually takes 6 months or less to process complete Express Entry applications, but in the meantime, workers can be hired on site under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or International Mobility Program while their Express Entry application is processed.
Mistakes or omissions in the application process can cause delays. Contact us to have your candidate's application handled in-house by a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada.
If you want to hire a skilled worker through either the Federal Skilled Worker Program or the Federal Skilled Trades Program, you will need to apply for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to show that there is a genuine need for a foreign worker to fill the role and that no Canadian worker is available.
Under the Express Entry program, any dependent family members of the main applicant are also granted permanent residence in Canada and enjoy all the same rights to live, work, and study in the country. However, under the TFWP program, dependent family members must make their own visa applications, but the main candidate's status may help, especially if they're highly skilled and will be working in Canada for 6 months or more. If a candidate wants to take their family with them, please contact us for advice tailored to their case.
The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) and the International Mobility Program (IMP) are very similar visa categories, which allow employers to hire migrant workers to fill short-term labour and skills shortages. Which program you use is determined by whether you need a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA); those who do should apply under the TFWP, while those that don't should use the IMP.
To find out if you need an LMIA, you can review the Canadian government's list of LMIA exemption codes yourself, which can be a complex and lengthy process. Alternatively, our in-house Canadian immigration specialists can handle the entire application for you.
Once you know which visa category to apply for, you can make the candidate an official job offer, after which they can apply for a Canadian work permit.