How to Get LMIA (Formerly LMO)

For many employers in Canada, an LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment) is very important before hiring a temporary foreign worker through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. The TFWP permits them to fill positions with foreign workers if no Canadian worker is available to fill the said position.

Are you an employee curious about how to get LMIA in Canada? Well, you’re in luck because this article will give you a brief introduction on how to get LMIA in Canada aside from outlining to you the guide and procedure on the same.

The Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)

Previously known as the Labour Market Opinion (LMO), the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is now the screening mechanism for any employer in need of hiring temporary foreign workers. These changes were made in June 2014 when the Canada Immigration changed their Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP).

Moreover, these changes were made to highlight strict priorities to any Canadian citizen for available jobs and other important amendments. Therefore, employers have to offer sufficient information about the ongoing job application and any data required on the LMIA. Additionally, employers with more than ten employees who apply for new LMIA are subject to a 10% cap on their workforce’s proportion consisting of low-wage temporary foreign workers.

With the wages being more accurate reflections of the occupational skill levels and the conditions of the labour market, the NOC will be replaced by the wage levels.

‘Low-wage’ jobs are those jobs that rank below the provincial or the territorial median wage while ‘high-wage’ jobs are those above the median wage. The current application fee is $1000 for every job position as opposed to the previous $275 before the reforms.

What Is LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment)?

According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the LMIA is an ‘a must have’ document for any employer in Canada willing to hire foreign workers. The document is fundamentally used to show the need to hire a foreign worker for any job position that a Canadian worker cannot perform.

It is a labour market verification process where the Employment and Social Development Canada or simply (ESDC) assesses employment offers to ensure that employing a foreign worker will have no negative impact on the labor market in Canada.

For this reason, the employer will have to offer a variety of information on the vacant position they wish to hire a foreign worker, including the total number of Canadians who applied for the position and those interviewed as well as a detailed explanation why no Canadian worker was considered for the position.

To any foreign employee, the LMIA is usually processed by your employer in Canada along with your work permit. Therefore, the responsibility of paying the required LMIA fees lies on the employer. Therefore take caution of any employer asking for the LMIA fees; the job could probably not be legit.

While you may be required to have the LMIA as a foreign worker, there are certain exceptions that will not necessarily need an LMIA like the youth exchange programs, free trade agreements and jobs under the International Mobility Program.

The Requirements of Getting LMIA in Canada 

As mentioned earlier, the sole responsibility of processing and applying for LMIA lies on your employer. The employer will have to contact the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) who’ll provide them with the details of processing the LMIA along with all the requirements needed.

If you’re familiar with getting LMO in Canada, then the process is closely related, though, after the new reforms made in June 2014, the process of getting LMIA is stricter with a $1000 fee per position job application requested for a labour market opinion.

Before applying for LMIA, an employer will have to advertise the job vacancies to the Canadian job market at least in the first four weeks. Additionally the employer applying for the LMIA will be required to provide proof that the foreign employment will not impact negatively on the Canada Labour Market aside from proving that Canadians cannot fill the job offering.

How Long Does It Take To Have An LMIA Approved?

Well, the ESDC has set a 10-day processing commitment to certain LMIA applications especially high-demand jobs as skilled trades and jobs with shorter duration of work period – normally less than 120 days.

What Do You Do After Getting A Positive LMIA?

Once you have a positive LMIA, as a foreign worker, you can now proceed to apply for a working visa. Your employer will send you a copy of the LMIA along with a signed employment contract that are necessary requirements for getting a visa at the Canadian embassy.

This procedure is usually done in your country of residence outside Canada. The Canadian embassy will require a work permit, LMIA, your medical exams along with other documents and immigration permits the moment you leave the country. It’s important therefore to check your country’s immigration requirements before your flight to Canada.

What If You Get Negative LMIA?

As much as Canada is a wealthy country with numerous employment opportunities, your LMIA may be disapproved due to one reason or another. If you have a negative LMIA, your employer may request a review of the application. However, this doesn’t guarantee that your LMIA will be approved this time around.

To The Employer 

Any employer applying for an LMIA for the first time will be required to provide a business license or permit along with the signed statement that shows his willingness to abide by the program requirements. Employers applying for a second LMIA will have to show that they have met all the terms and conditions of employment that were set in the previous LMIA confirmation letter.

Wrapping Up

With this information, you now have an idea of the requirements and procedure for getting an LMIA in Canada. Moreover, this article has not only outlined the requirements but also given you a clear understand of what an LMIA is and why it is important for employers to apply for one