Inland Spousal or Common-Law Partner Open Work Permit Pilot Program

Introduced in December 2014 for Canadian citizens and permanent residents whose inland sponsorship application is in process, this pilot work permit program allows their spouse or common-law partner to stay in Canada through an open work permit.

The government of Canada had concluded many years back that the presence of immediate (close) family members in Canada are vital for the person’s happiness as well as enhanced contribution to the Canadian economy. Entertaining this fact in the background, the government launched the Family Class Sponsorship program, whereby Canadian citizens and permanent residents can sponsor their immediate family members to come and explore the Canadian way of life. Family Class applications are prioritized applications in any Canadian visa office as well as Centralized Intake Offices (CIOs). IRCC targets to finish the processing of these applications in less than 12 months’ time.

To mitigate the practical as well as emotional problems involved when the spouse or common-law partner of the applicant has to be away for up to 12 months, the inland spousal or common-law partner open work permit pilot program has been introduced. Through this program, a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, whose inland spousal sponsorship application is in process, may sponsor his or her spouse or common-law partner to stay in Canada through an open work permit. An open work permit does not require a job offer. It is not employer-specific, meaning, the person who stays in Canada under an open work permit can work for any employer anywhere in Canada.

To know more about inland spousal or common-law partner sponsorship, click here.

Eligibility Criteria:

To be eligible to apply under this program, the following criteria is required to be met:

  • A Canadian citizen’s or permanent resident’s spouse or common-law partner must have submitted a sponsorship application on their behalf;
  • A spousal or common-law partner sponsorship immigration application must have been submitted by the person to IRCC for processing;
  • The person must have a valid temporary resident status in Canada at the time the application is made;
  • The person must be staying with the sponsor (Canadian citizen or permanent resident);
  • The applicant (the person) as well as the sponsor must meet all the eligibility criteria applicable to spousal or common-law partner sponsorship program.

 

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