Book an Appointment

Open Work Permit : Stay And Work In Canada

An open work permit allows a foreign national to work for any Canadian employer they choose, as long as they abide by the restrictions of the work permit. An open work permit can be acquired from outside or inside Canada, and the individual may apply for it at a port of entry.

What is An Open Work Permit?

An open work permit is a type of Canadian work permit that does not require a specific job offer. This means that holders of an open work permit can work for any employer in Canada, with some exceptions.

There are two main types of open work permits:

1. General Open Work Permits

A general open work permit allows the holder to work for any employer in Canada, with some exceptions. There are a few different categories of workers who are eligible for a general open work permit, including:

-Spouses or common-law partners of certain highly skilled workers
-Graduates of Canadian post-secondary institutions
-Young workers participating in international exchange programs
-Workers under the Live-in Caregiver Program
-Refugees and refugee claimants

2. Open Work Permits for Specific Groups of Workers
There are also a number of open work permits that are specifically designed for certain groups of workers. These include:
-Open Work Permits for Spouses or Common-Law Partners of Skilled Workers (under the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program)
-Open Work Permits for Postdoctoral Fellows

In order to be eligible for an open work permit, you must meet certain criteria set by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Benefits of an Open Work Permit

Because of the freedom they provide, open work permits are in high demand. Most work permits tie foreign nationals to a specific employer, but an open work permit enables a foreigner to work for any company in Canada and gives them the ability to move from one location to another at their leisure.  By gaining Canadian work experience, many foreigners will meet the qualifications for permanent residency in Canada. As Canadian work experience is accrued, foreigners can monitor their eligibility for the following pathways to permanent residency:

1. Express Entry

2. Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs)
3. Quebec Immigration

The Open Work Permit allows foreign nationals to work in Canada without the need for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). This means that businesses can hire foreign workers without having to go through the LMIA process. The Open Work Permit is also available to certain categories of foreign workers, such as international students and temporary foreign workers.

The Open Work Permit is an important tool for businesses looking to hire foreign workers. It helps them meet their labour needs while ensuring that Canadian workers have the first opportunity at available jobs.

The following individuals are eligible for an open work permit:

  • Some international students who have completed a specific program of study in Canada
  • Applicants for permanent residency who have applied through the inland spousal sponsorship method
  • Some young workers taking part in International Experience Canada (IEC) programs
  • Participants in the Canada World Youth Program
  • Spouses of skilled worker residents
  • Spouses of foreign students
  • Foreign people currently in Canada whose work permit is about to expire and who have applied for permanent residency under:
  • The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
  • The Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
  • A Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)
  • The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
  • Note: These workers are only eligible for an open work permit if they meet the program’s eligibility standards.

What are The Requirements for applying for an open work permit?

To apply for an open work permit, you must:

-Be 18 years of age or older
-Have a valid passport or travel document
-Have a job offer from a Canadian employer
-Meet the specific requirements of the program under which you are applying
-Pay the required fees

How Much Does it Cost to Apply for An Open Work Permit?

There is no set fee for applying for an open work permit. The cost will depend on the individual’s circumstances and which country they are applying from. The process of applying for an open work permit can be done online, through a paper application, or in person at a Canadian visa office.

The cost of the application will vary depending on the method used to apply. Applying online will typically be less expensive than doing so in person at a visa office. The paper application process can be more expensive, as it requires additional fees for things like courier services.

It is important to note that there are also other costs associated with applying for an open work permit, such as the cost of a medical exam and a police certificate (if required). These additional costs will vary depending on the individual’s circumstances.


1. How long does the open work permit last?

The open work permit lasts for the duration of your approved stay in Canada.

2. How many hours can I work per week?

You can work up to 40 hours per week.

3. Do I need a job offer to apply for an open work permit?

No, you do not need a job offer to apply for an open work permit. However, you must meet all other eligibility requirements.

4. Can my spouse or common-law partner apply for an open work permit?

Yes, your spouse or common-law partner may also be eligible to apply for an open work permit if they meet the eligibility requirements.

Privacy Settings
We use cookies to enhance your experience while using our website. If you are using our Services via a browser you can restrict, block or remove cookies through your web browser settings. We also use content and scripts from third parties that may use tracking technologies. You can selectively provide your consent below to allow such third party embeds. For complete information about the cookies we use, data we collect and how we process them, please check our Privacy Policy
Consent to display content from - Youtube
Consent to display content from - Vimeo
Google Maps
Consent to display content from - Google
Consent to display content from - Spotify
Sound Cloud
Consent to display content from - Sound
Get Free Assessment
Service Menu
Quick Links
Book an Appointment