Canada has released the guide for how essential workers and international students can apply for an open work permit.
The new instructions from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) are for those who applied for the new temporary residence to permanent residence (TR to PR) pathways. The department has published the official instructions online.
Launched in May, the six new TR to PR programs were created to offer immigration pathways to international student graduates, essential workers, and French speakers in Canada.
Those who were allowed to apply for the new programs already had temporary residence documents in Canada, such as a work or study permit. The new open work permit is for those who applied for these programs with a short amount of validity left on their current documents. It acts like a bridging open work permit, allowing applicants to stay in Canada while IRCC makes a decision on their application.
These work permits will be valid until December 31, 2022. If the applicant’s spouse, common-law partner, or dependent child over age 18 is in Canada, they too can apply for the permit.
The new work permit applies to the TR to PR pathways. There are six of them, three that have intake caps and are open to English speakers, plus three that only apply to French speakers and have no limit on applications.
The programs along with their quotas are listed as follows:
The new programs are scheduled to close on November 5, or until IRCC receives the maximum number of applications for each program. So far, only the international graduates program and the pathway for essential workers in non-healthcare occupations have filled up.
IRCC says you can apply up to four months before your current temporary status expires. Family members can apply at any time. You can also apply at any time if you are on maintained status, or if you are eligible to restore your status.
The only way to apply is online. You cannot apply at a port of entry. If you can’t apply online, for a disability or because of your internet connection, IRCC also offers an option to accept paper applications.
Step 1. Get everything you need
To apply online you need a scanner or a camera. You will also need your debit or credit card available to pay the feeds.
Also, in order to view IRCC’s instruction guide to help you fill out the forms, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader downloaded on your computer.
Step 2. Pay your fees
You will need to pay the $155 work permit extension fee on the government website. Because you are exempt from paying the $100 open work permit holder fee, you have to pay before applying online.
Step 3. Login to IRCC account
In order to start applying, you need an account with IRCC. You can use this account to submit your application forms and check your status.
Once you are signed in, you need to go to the “Start your application” section on the account welcome page. Then click “Apply to come to Canada.” After that, scroll down to the “I do not have a personal reference code” section. Click on the “Visitor visa, study and/or work permit” button. Finally, on the next page, select “work.”
Step 4. Get document checklist
Once your account is created, you will then have to answer some questions in order to get a personalized document checklist.
Say that you would like to work temporarily — more than six months. Also, both workers and students must select “worker” when asked “What is your current immigration status in Canada?” For students, this is a temporary measure while IRCC updates the application system.
When you are asked which scenario applies to you, choose “I am applying for an open work permit under an active public policy or pilot program announced by IRCC.”
Then you will be asked “There are fees associated with this application. Will you be paying your fees are are you fee exempt?” Answer “No, I am exempt from paying fees for the application.” Even though you have already paid your $155 fee, you are exempt from paying the open work permit holder fee.
Step 5. Fill out the forms
IRCC’s instruction guide will help you fill out the forms once you have your document checklist.
One of the required documents will be the IMM 5710 form, called “Application to Change Conditions or Extend my Stay or Remain in Canada as a Worker.” In the “Details of Intended Work in Canada” section, under Box 1 select “Open Work Permit.” Then in Box 4, enter “TRPR pathway PP OWP” in the Job Title box. Then in the “Brief description of duties” box, enter the name of the PR stream you applied for. For example, “Public policy for foreign nationals in Canada with recent Canadian work experience in essential occupations.”
For “Duration of expected employment,” you can ask for an end date that is no later than December 21, 2022. However, you cannot ask for a date beyond the expiry of your passport.
Step 6. Upload the correct documents
For principal applicants, some of the documents you need include a copy of your fees receipt, some sort of proof that you were working legally when you applied (like a work permit), proof of language test result, copy of your passport, a digital photo and a Family Information Form.
You may also need a medical exam, or other documents such as a marriage certificate, or birth certificates for any accompanying family members.
Family members in Canada will have their own document checklist. Among the documents will be the Generic Application form for Canada known as IMM 0008. This form must show the family member’s name as listed in the principal applicant’s application. It can be uploaded under “Client Information.”
After you apply, an immigration officer will eventually review your application. They will check your employer’s compliance history to make sure they are not ineligible. Also, that you qualify for the work permit.
If they determine your application is incomplete, they will return it without processing it. They may also ask you to send more information.
However, if you are eligible they will mail the work permit to the Canadian address you gave them. The work permit will say the type of work you can do, the employer you can work for, where you can work, and how long you can work.
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