Family members of WP holders who are Economic Class PR applicants or chosen by a province [R205(c)(ii) – C49] – Canadian interest – IMP

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

In these instructions, “officer” refers to employees of both Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and the Canada Border Services Agency.

The instructions on this page should be reviewed in conjunction with

The Minister has designated the following categories of work for genuine family members of principal foreign nationals who hold work permits and are the principal applicants in an Economic Class permanent resident application or have been formally nominated or selected by a province or territory as necessary for public policy reasons related to the competitiveness of Canada’s academic institutions, or economy, under subparagraph 205(c)(ii) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR).

In these instructions, family member is defined as per subsection R1(3) as

The family member should be included in the permanent resident application as a dependent.

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To be a dependent family member, the applicant for an open work permit must be in a genuine relationship with a principal foreign national. For the dependent family member to be eligible, the principal foreign national must meet all of the following:

The principal foreign national may be employed part-time for the dependent family member to qualify for this labour market impact assessment (LMIA) exemption. Although there is no standard minimum hours required, officers have to be satisfied the principal foreign national’s wages or available funds will be sufficient to financially support themselves and their family members while they are in Canada.

Documentary evidence

With the application for an open work permit, the dependent family member should be providing the following:

Principal foreign national

The principal foreign national is the first foreign national parent in the family unit who obtained a work permit.

In assessing eligibility for a family member open work permit, the principal foreign national continues to remain the principal parent in the family unit.

The principal foreign national cannot obtain an open work permit under the C41, C42, C46, C47, C48 or C49 administrative code categories based on the dependent family member’s open work permit.

For example, if the principal foreign national is the holder of a work permit issued based on a LMIA and the dependent spouse obtains an open work permit under LMIA exemption code C41 as the spouse of a high-skilled worker, the principal foreign national cannot quit their job under the LMIA-based work permit and obtain a work permit in the low-skilled spousal category (code C47) on the basis of their spouse’s C41 open work permit and employment in a TEER category 4 or 5 occupation.

Important: dependent children cannot be the principal foreign national as per the definition in subsection R1(3).

Genuine relationship

As per section R4, a foreign national shall not be considered a spouse or a common-law partner of a person if the marriage or common-law partnership

If officers have concerns as to the genuineness of the relationship, they may request further documentation or information to confirm that the relationship between the dependent spouse or common-law partner and the principal foreign national is genuine and is not a relationship of convenience.

Work permit processing in the Global Case Management System (GCMS)

Under the Application screen, officers should enter the following information in the specified fields:

Field Selection or input
Case Type 20
Province of destination


Important: Except for the family members of a provincial nominee or CSQ holders, then location should be restricted to the province of nomination or selection.

Exemption code

Family member of an Economic permanent resident applicant: C49



Intended Occupation Open



The open work permit may be issued for a period that ends no later than the period of authorized stay of the principal foreign national or the date the applicant’s passport expires, whichever comes first.

If the principal foreign national is authorized to work without a permit under paragraph R186(u) at the time the family member’s work permit application is submitted, the application should be placed on hold until the principal foreign national’s work permit application is assessed.


Officers should ensure that instructions provided in Medical conditions to be imposed for occupation-restricted work permits are followed.

User Remarks


The following remark must be added to all open work permits

Authorized to work as per applicable labour laws.


$155 work permit processing fee

$100 open work permit holder fee


Work permit applicants are required to provide biometric information and pay the biometric fee – $85

The regular biometric exemptions apply (for example, age or 1 in 10).

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