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Canada Warns of Work Permit Delays Due to Labour Market Impact Assessment Processing

Aug 06, 2019 – Processing delays for Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIAs) are continuing, according to Canada’s federal government.

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), which handles Canada work permit and LMIA requests, has published average processing times by each Temporary Foreign Worker Programcategory.

The times range from 10 business days for the Global Talent Stream up to 120 business days for the low wage stream.

Expected LMIA Processing Times

Application type

Processing Time

Global Talent Stream

10 business days

Agricultural Stream

30 business days

Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program

15 business days

Permanent Residence Stream

40 business days

In-home Caregivers

25 business days

High-wage Stream

85 business days

Low-wage Stream

120 business days

Source: ESDC


An ESDC statement said: “We are currently experiencing a high number of LMIA applications which is resulting in longer processing times for some streams of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.

“We are providing recent processing times by stream to help you estimate how long it will take us to assess your application. Please account for these when planning for your employment needs.”

This is the second time ESDC has warned of LMIA processing delays in the last year, after initially issuing a warning in October 2018, and a second warning in April 2019.

Officials also urged applicants to ensure applications are complete before submission, and to respond promptly to requests for addition information.

Temporary Foreign Worker Program

Foreign workers must have an approved job offer and a work permit before arriving in Canada under the TFWP.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) works with ESDC to ensure foreign workers do not take jobs for which Canadian citizens or permanent residents are available.

Canadian employers intending to hire a foreign worker must obtain prior approval.  This is done by using the Labour Market Impact Assessment.

In some cases, foreign workers may qualify to work in Canada without an LMIA under various programs, such as the International Mobility Program.

Canada recently launched the Global Talent Stream, through which LMIA requests are processed in two weeks for certain in-demand technology occupations.

The two-week processing is also available for other occupations, provided the employer has been referred by a recognized referral agency., in conjunction with our in-house recruitment enterprise Skilled Worker, frequently helps employers and job seekers in the recruitment process and in securing favourable LMIAs and applying for Canada work permits and related Canada visas.

Candidates who have a job offer in Canada and are ready to apply for a work permit should complete this questionnaire for a online assessment.

Interested employers: Kindly contact us here to receive further information.

Interested candidates: Find out whether you qualify to Canada by completing our a on-line evaluation. We will provide you with our evaluation within 1-2 business days.

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