Canada is a country with a huge territory, rich natural resources and a high standard of living. The local economy is successfully developing in various directions – from agriculture to high-tech industrial production. Unemployment on average does not exceed 5-6%, inflation is minimal, and salaries in Canada grow with enviable regularity.

Work visa to Canada

Canadian universities provide high quality modern education, so the local labor force is very qualified and competitive. Nevertheless, work in Canada is available to a wide range of foreign specialists, in whose skills and experience the country's authorities and Canadian business are interested. Next, let's find out how to get a work visa to Canada in 2024.

Processing a work visa to Canada

Permanent workers

Immigration to Canada is a dream of hundreds of thousands of foreigners from different parts of the world. By the way, the local government has developed quite transparent and clear programs for migrant workers who want to connect their lives with this wonderful country for a long time and eventually obtain Canadian citizenship. In order to move to Canada for employment and permanent residence, a candidate must pass a special test (Express Entry), which specifies age, profession, qualifications, education, language skills, work experience and checks some other information.

In order to obtain a work visa to Canada, or rather, the right to participate in the program, it is necessary to score a certain number of points. Anyone can fill out the application form online for free. Here is a link to the official website. It should be noted that this method of immigration is intended for qualified specialists who plan permanent (long-term) employment in Canada. The following programs are open today:

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program

  • Federal Skilled Trades Program

  • Canadian Experience Class

  • Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)

Applications are usually processed within 6 months. If more than a year has passed since the application was filled out and no response has been received, you may try to retake the test or choose another option to apply for a work visa to Canada. As a rule, candidates with the highest scores are selected.

Temporary Workers

Temporary Workers

A work visa to Canada for foreigners in the classical sense usually implies temporary employment on Canadian territory with subsequent departure from the country. In this case, the requirements for applicants from abroad are similar to most developed European countries. Employees are issued a so-called non-immigrant visa to Canada. The main difficulty here is the preliminary search for an employer and obtaining a work permit (LIMA).

Requirements for foreigners to obtain a work visa to Canada

  1. Registration of an employment contract with a Canadian company.

  2. A positive decision from Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) to grant a foreigner a work permit in Canada - LIMA (Labor Market Impact Assessment). The employer sends the application to HRSDC. Employees of the agency check the real need of the company in a specialist from abroad, that is, the vacancy should not apply to Canadians or persons with permanent residence in Canada.

  3. Documentation of qualifications, experience and education relevant to the future position.

  4. Commitment to Canadian immigration officials to leave the country after the expiration of the contract if there is no legitimate reason for further stay.

  5. Proof of sufficient financial security to live in Canada, including family members.

  6. No criminal record and generally no violations of the law.

  7. The alien must not pose a threat to Canadian security.

  8. Good health.

  9. Provide additional information when requested by immigration officials.

Who does not need a work permit to work in Canada

Usually, a work visa to Canada with a temporary employment authorization (LIMA) is valid for no more than 4 years. During this time, the foreign specialist has the right to bring family members. Depending on the nationality of the applicant, the application processing time varies from 2 to 7 months. The official cost of a work visa to Canada (application processing) in 2024 is 150 Canadian dollars.

Who does not need a work permit to work in Canada

In some cases, a work permit (LIMA) is not required for a foreign job seeker, such as:

  • Working under international agreements including NAFTA and GATS.

  • The employer is able to prove that the foreigner will bring significant social, cultural and/or economic benefits to the country. They may be experienced technical professionals or holders of creative professions.

  • Mobilité franchise employees.

  • Professional coaches and athletes.

  • Scientists, professors and researchers at the invitation of Canadian scientific and educational institutions.

  • Employees of charitable and religious organizations.

  • Journalists, reporters.

  • Diplomatic personnel.

  • Military personnel of foreign countries.

  • Investors (businessmen).

Medical examination

One of the most important steps in applying for a work visa to Canada is passing a medical examination. To obtain a certificate, it is necessary to apply to the health care institution in your country, which is listed on the official Canadian government portal

Usually, a full medical examination is conducted, fluorography is done and tests are taken to ensure that there are no serious diseases. The examination can be done before applying for a Canadian work visa or within 30 days of receiving instructions from immigration officials. The certificate is valid for 12 months.

Documents for a work visa to Canada

Documents for a work visa to Canada

If the documents for a work visa to Canada are not in English or French, there must be an official translation. In addition to the standard list below, visa center staff may require additional or clarifying information.

  1. One color photo taken not later than 6 months ago with the name on the back.

  2. Original passport with two blank pages.

  3. Copy of LIMA work permit (if required).

  4. Invitation letter from the employer.

  5. Copy of employment contract stating salary, duration and working conditions.

  6. Copies of diplomas, certificates and other credentials.

  7. Proof of work experience. That is, reference letters from past employers, indicating the duration, duties and specifics of the job (names, contacts, addresses).

  8. Medical certificate and criminal record clearance.

  9. Information on marital status (form IMM 5645).

  10. IELTS / TEF language test results obtained within the last 12 months (if required).

To successfully apply for a Canadian work visa, you must coordinate closely with your employer and immigration officials. Gather as much information as possible from the official website of the Government of Canada ( and strictly follow the instructions. It is through this site that the application and documents for a work visa are submitted electronically (online).

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