Under the Temporary Foreign Workers Program (“TFWP”), CIC facilitates the temporary entry of foreign workers needed to address labour market shortages and to provide other economic opportunities for Canadians, such as job creation and the transfer of new skills and knowledge. With a few exceptions, foreign workers must have an approved job offer and a work permit before arriving in Canada. CIC works with HRSDC to ensure that the admission of foreign workers does not adversely affect employment opportunities for Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

The TFWP program is made up of four streams: high-skilled workers, low-skilled workers, the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program, and the Live-In Caregiver Program.

Your family members may accompany you to Canada. All family members must complete their own application forms but the forms may be submitted together. If your family members would like to work in Canada, they will have to fill out their own work permit applications.

In certain cases, spouses or common-law partners will be eligible for an open work permit (Open Work Permits). If your children would like to study in Canada, they must submit a study permit application.

Open work permits allow them to work in any job with any employer with limited exception. An open work permit also means that they may be hired without the employer having to obtain an LMO.

Generally your spouse’s eligibility for an open work permit depends on the skill level of your job.

If you are considered a high skill worker, your spouse or common-law partner could be eligible for an open work permit. You must also be authorized to work in Canada for a period of at least six months.

If you are considered a low skill worker, your spouse will only be eligible for an open work permit through an active pilot project.

In addition to this, your dependent children eligibility for an open work permit can only be determined through an active pilot project.