Refusal to process or suspension of processing of a Labour Market Impact Assessment application - Temporary Foreign Worker Program

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by IRCC staff. It is posted on the department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

There are certain conditions that may justify why Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) cannot process a labour market impact assessment (LMIA) application. These conditions include:

When ESDC refuses to process an LMIA application, or suspends the processing of an LMIA application, this decision has no initial effect on IRCC or CBSA. Neither IRCC nor CBSA knows of the processing of an LMIA until the positive determination has been provided to the work permit applicant by their employer.

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On September 26, 2022, amendments were made to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations to authorize the Minister of ESDC to suspend the processing of an LMIA if there is reason to suspect that an employer is not complying, or has not complied, with certain conditions under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, and the suspected non-compliance would put the health and safety of the foreign worker at serious risk.

Concurrent processing

Applicants whose work permit application was submitted with proof that an LMIA was requested for work in an occupation that is under one of the refusal to process regimes will not be granted 60-day concurrent processing, since ESDC will not process the LMIA application. As a result, their work permit application will be refused if the application does not include an approved LMIA at the time of receipt.

Regulatory authority

ESDC does not have the authority to process applications from ineligible employers for the Temporary Foreign Worker Program who:

Ministerial Instructions

As a result of public policy considerations as determined in Ministerial Instructions, ESDC may refuse to process an LMIA application for:

Low-wage positions above the current cap

Low-wage positions, if the employer is above the current cap on the proportion of low-wage temporary foreign workers for the same positions at the same work location.

Previous revocation

ESDC may refuse to process the LMIA application for any position if the employer has had an application revoked in the past 2 years for having provided false, misleading or inaccurate information.

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