Temporary Foreign Worker Program

The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) gives Canadian employers the ability to hire workers and professionals from outside Canada to fill job positions in Canada.

The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) is a joint venture by two different Canadian governmental bodies. They are:

The first step towards hiring a foreign worker to come to Canada starts when the employer approaches Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) to obtain a positive labour market opinion. In other words, a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). Once the employer has a positive labour market opinion from the respective ESDC office (sanctioned through Service Canada centres, wherein ESDC being the parent organization), the foreign worker can apply for the work permit. From this phase onwards, the responsible body will be Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)

Before a Canadian employer can hire a foreign national to come and work in Canada, the employer must prove to the government (ESDC) that there are no suitable Canadian citizens or permanent residents in the locality to fill the job position. In this regard, the employer need to conduct genuine hiring efforts, including meeting all applicable LMIA advertising requirements. If the employer fails in finding a suitable candidate, then the employer can apply for an LMIA. In the LMIA process, if ESDC comes to a conclusion that the hiring of the foreign national will create only a positive (or neutral) impact on the labour market, then the employer may hire the foreign national to come and work in Canada. To learn more about the LMIA process, click here.

Some occupation categories are exempt from the LMIA requirements. In other words, the Canadian employer need not go through the LMIA process before the hiring can begin. To learn more about LMIA exempt categories, click here. International mobility programs (mainly a program under International Experience Canada-IEC) are also exempt from LMIA requirements.

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