Hire a top foreign talent through the Global Talent Stream
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- Before you apply
- How to apply
- Make changes to your pending application
- After you apply
- Related links
- Contact us
Transitioning to online applications
As of April 2023, the Temporary Foreign Worker Program is moving to online LMIA applications. Consult the LMIA Online Portal Resources page frequently for details and updates.
Get a head start and use the LMIA Online Portal today!
The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) is intended to be used when you're facing short-term skills and labour shortages, and only when no Canadians and permanent residents are available.
The Global Talent Stream offers timely, responsive and predictable client-focused service to help you access highly skilled global talent to expand your workforce here in Canada and to be competitive on a global scale. This Stream is designed for innovative firms in Canada that are referred to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) by a designated referral partner and that need unique and specialized foreign nationals in order to scale-up and grow. It's also intended for firms in Canada that need to fill an in-demand, highly skilled position on the Global Talent Occupations List.
- If you hire a worker through the Global Talent Stream, you must develop a Labour Market Benefits Plan that demonstrates your employer-specific commitment to activities that will have lasting, positive impacts on the Canadian labour market. Progress Reviews of your Plan will be conducted annually to assess how well you're meeting your commitments
- Progress Reviews of your Labour Market Benefits Plan as a Global Talent Stream employer are separate and distinct from all compliance-related activities conducted under the TFWP
As of April 4, 2022, employers submitting a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application for a high-wage position may request an employment duration of up to 3 years. The employment duration must align with the employer's reasonable employment needs. The duration may be issued for longer in exceptional circumstances whereby the employer provides an adequate rationale.
High-wage positions include:
- the Global Talent Stream
- the High-wage Stream, including caregiver positions
- the Agricultural Stream, and
- applications to support permanent residency
Before you apply
Employers applying to the Global Talent Stream can expect:
- to receive a positive or negative LMIA
- processing time for an LMIA is 10 business days (80% of the time) beginning the first business day following the day we receive the application
- support throughout the application process by TFWP officers
- accelerated work permit processing by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for approved applicants (10 business days, 80% of the time)
Hiring temporary foreign workers in British Columbia or Manitoba
If you're hiring temporary foreign workers (TFWs) in British Columbia or Manitoba, you must apply for the employer registration certificate with the province first and include a copy of the certificate or proof of exemption with your LMIA application. Your application will be considered incomplete if submitted without the required documentation. Be sure to consider provincial processing times before you submit your LMIA applications.
For more information on provincial laws on the employer registration requirement and possible exemptions in British Columbia and Manitoba, visit the following websites:
- British Columbia:
- Provincial website: Register to hire foreign workers
- Provincial law: Temporary Foreign Worker Protection Act
- Provincial website: Employer Registration Information
- Provincial law: Worker Recruitment and Protection Act
Hiring temporary foreign workers in Quebec
For positions in Quebec for an employment period of more than 30 consecutive days:
- LMIA applications must be submitted at the same time to Service Canada and Quebec's Ministère de l'Immigration, de la Francisation et de l'Intégration (MIFI) (in French only)
- failure to do so will prevent your application from being processed and will result in its closure. No refund of the processing fee will be made
- all applications must be submitted to MIFI in paper format
- the names of the TFWs must be included in the application
For more information, consult Hiring in the province of Quebec.
On May 12, 2020, IRCC announced a temporary public policy. The new policy allows some TFWs who are already in Canada to change jobs before a final decision is made on their work permit application.
Employers hiring these TFWs may receive priority processing of the requests to add or change names on approved LMIAs. To do so, employers must notify Service Canada in writing that the TFW:
- is in Canada, and
- wishes to benefit from IRCC's COVID-19 temporary public policy
How to apply
Your LMIA application can be submitted up to 6 months prior to the expected job start date.
There are 2 ways you can apply:
- online through the LMIA Online Portal, or
- by emailing a PDF application form
The fastest way to apply is through the LMIA Online Portal. It's a reliable and secure platform that allows you to complete and submit an online application to Service Canada.
To access the LMIA Online Portal, you need to have a Job Bank account.
1) Create a Job Bank for employers account if you don't already have one
It takes approximately 10 minutes to register, and up to 5 business days for Job Bank to process new employer file.
2) Access the LMIA Online Portal using your Job Bank for employers' credentials
Your account details will be required for authentication purposes.
3) Submit your application
- Create and fill out your LMIA application
- Upload all required documents supporting your business legitimacy (if applicable)
- Submit the application form along with the required documents and the processing fee (if applicable) via the LMIA Online Portal
Send a PDF application form by email
If you're unable to apply through the LMIA Online Portal, visit the LMIA Online Portal resources webpage for information on how to request an exemption and a PDF LMIA application form.
If you're applying for multiple positions at the same time, you can complete and submit the GTS – Annex 1 Additional Occupation form (EMP5625) instead of completing a separate application for each position.
For applications where the work location is in Canada with the exception of Quebec
Submit your application:
- using Data Gateway, or
- to the Service Canada processing centre responsible for this specific program or for processing the LMIA applications in the region where the TFW will be employed
For positions in Quebec
Submit your application:
- using Data Gateway
- by email: EDSC.QC.PTET.INFO-INFO.TFWP.QC.ESDC@servicecanada.gc.ca
Make changes to your pending application
If you need to make changes to your application once submitted, and before the LMIA decision is made, contact the appropriate Service Canada processing centre or the Employer Contact Centre to modify the application and avoid processing delays.
If you need to change the stream you had originally selected, withdraw your original application and reapply under the new stream. Processing fees aren't refunded and cannot be transferred to your new application.
After you apply
As of April 4, 2022, employers may request an LMIA validity extension up to 18 months if:
- the previously issued positive LMIA has a validity period of 6 or 9 months, and
- the LMIA is valid on the day the extension request is received by Service Canada
The extension requests can be made to the Service Canada processing centre that initially processed the LMIA.
A dedicated team at ESDC will provide all Global Talent Stream employers with streamlined, client-focused service.
Employers applying to the Global Talent Stream can expect:
- faster processing of your Global Talent Stream applications with a service standard of 10 business days starting on the business day after the application has been received by ESDC – this service standard is expected to be met 80% of the time
- personalized, high-touch assistance throughout the assessment process, and
- eligibility for your highly skilled global talent workers to have their work permits processed in 2 weeks by IRCC – this service standard is expected to be met 80% of the time
Applications are assessed to determine the impact that hiring TFWs would have on Canada's labour market. As part of the assessment process, ESDC/Service Canada will ensure that the employer has met all program requirements.
In accordance with amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, ESDC/Service Canada has the authority to temporarily suspend LMIA processing when there's reason to suspect that an employer isn't complying or hasn't complied with certain conditions that would put the health or safety of TFWs at serious risk.
Suspending the processing of an LMIA isn't a decision that ESDC/Service Canada takes lightly. The intent is to protect TFWs from entering a potentially harmful workplace while ESDC/Service Canada investigates the allegations. The LMIA processing suspension will be lifted as soon as it's known that the serious risk to the TFWs health or safety was unfounded or has been resolved.
Once the assessment process is complete, the employer will be notified in writing of the final decision of their LMIA application.
Changing a TFW name on a positive LMIA
Employers who need to change/replace the name of a TFW on a positive Global Talent Stream LMIA must send a completed Request to add or remove a Foreign National's name form (ESDC-EMP5661) by email to NC-GTS-VTM-TFWP-PTET-GD@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca.
Processing times vary depending on the number of names to be changed:
- 10 names or less – request must be received at least 15 business days prior to the LMIA validity date
- more than 10 names – request must be received at least 20 business days prior to the LMIA validity date
Important: For Category A applications, a Global Talent Stream designated referral partner must submit a new referral to validate that the Category A eligibility criteria continues to be met based on the new foreign worker(s) identified. Name change requests for Category A positions won't be processed without a new referral.
Name changes aren't performed for Global Talent Stream LMIAs when the LMIA was previously used for a work permit application (as verified by IRCC).
If you wish to change/replace the name of your already identified foreign worker for reasons related to COVID-19, you can now benefit from an expedited name change process. You'll need to indicate that the name change request is due to hardships related to COVID-19 when you contact the processing centre that initially processed your LMIA.
For positions located in Quebec, you must have a positive LMIA to make a name change. The request must be submitted at least 90 calendar days before the expiry of the LMIA. No name changes will be made if the LMIA is under assessment. For more details on the required steps, consult Connaître les conditions pour remplacer un travailleur temporaire | Gouvernement du Québec (quebec.ca) page (French only).
Modification to a positive LMIA
Employers must take immediate action when changes have been made or need to be made to a foreign national worker's terms and conditions of employment as described in the positive LMIA letter and any annexes. ESDC/Service Canada recommends that employers consult the Modification to a positive LMIA page to determine when a change requires contacting the Employer Contact Centre or submitting a new LMIA form. In accordance with the provisions of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations, ESDC may conduct an inspection to verify the employer's compliance with the conditions set out in the positive LMIA letter and annexes. This inspection could include a review of the employer's file. As a result, if Service Canada doesn't have a copy of the changes, the employer will be held accountable for the information that's on file.
Note: Information included in the Modification to a positive LMIA page doesn't apply to the process of changing/replacing TFW names on a positive LMIA. For details on that process, refer to the Changing a TFW name on a positive LMIA section.
Cancelling a job offer
If you no longer require the service of the TFW for which you've received a positive assessment under the Global Talent Stream or decide to cancel your job offer, prior to the entry of the TFW, it's important that you inform the worker directly and also let the Employer Contact Centre know of the situation by calling 1-800-367-5693. Your Global Talent Stream application processing fee won't be reimbursed if you cancel a job offer.
End of employment
If you cannot locate the TFW for which you've received a positive assessment under the Global Talent Stream or the worker doesn't show up for departure from Canada at the end of your employment contract with the worker, you must:
- make reasonable efforts to reach the worker, and
- notify the Canada Border Services Agency and IRCC
You must keep all documents used to support your application for a minimum of 6 years beginning on the TFW's first day of work. We may request these documents at any time to verify your past compliance with program conditions.
- After you apply
- Hire a temporary foreign worker in a high-wage position
- Employer compliance
- Get a work permit
- Job Bank
- Work in Canada
- Labour Market Impact Assessment application processing times
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