Open Work Permit Canada

Canadian immigration offers a type of work permit that is not tied to a specific employer and is exempt from the labour market opinion requirement from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).


Work Permits for the Spouse of a Foreign Students

Foreign students and foreign workers are in most cases entitled to have their spouse accompany them. Their spouse will be entitled to an open work or study permit, allowing them to work for any Canadian employer or study at any Canadian educational institution. These types of work permits do not require a job offer – the spouse will qualify for it on the basis of the principal applicant’s study or work permit.

Spouses: Spouses and common-law partners of certain foreign students who are currently studying or working in Canada qualify. This exemption applies to spouses who are not themselves enrolled in full-time studies and spouses and common-law partners of certain skilled foreign workers.

There is one exception.  Foreign workers in the province of British Columbia are entitled to have their working age (18-22 years old) children and their spouse accompany them on an open work permit in Canada.

Dependent children of skilled workers: Working age dependent children of certain skilled foreign workers. At this time, only foreign workers in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia are entitled to have their dependent children accompany them to Canada on an open work permit.

Post-Graduate Work Permits

Graduates of Canadian academic programs of at least eight months in duration can move from a Canada study permit to a post-graduate open work permit. Canada will issue the work permit for the same period of validity as the previous study permit. For more information on this type of open work permit, click here.

Working Holiday Visa

Foreign workers, students and other individuals from certain countries who meet the requirements may apply for this open work permit. The working holiday program is designed for visiting youth seeking a Canadian work experience. If you are between the ages of 18 and 35 and are interested in spending a year in Canada, consider the working holiday visa.   This program only applies to individuals from a country that has an agreement with Canada for this program.

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