Two-week processing for global skills

As of June 12, 2017, some high-skilled foreign nationals applying from outside Canada will be eligible for two-week processing.

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General criteria

Foreign national workers will be eligible for priority processing with a target of two-week processing if they submitted their e-application on June 12, 2017, or later and either

  • are applying from outside Canada and as part of the International Mobility Program (does not require a Labour Market Impact Assessment [LMIA] by Employment and Social Development Canada [ESDC]) and have an employer-specific job offer in a National Occupational Classification(NOC) code 0 or A position (see note below); or
  • are applying from outside Canada and have been identified within ESDC’s Global Talent Stream (regardless of NOC code).

Note: International Experience Canada (IEC) applicants are ineligible for priority processing under these instructions. These applications will continue to be processed under IEC guidelines and processing times.

Application criteria

To benefit from two-week processing, applicants must

  • submit a complete application;
  • apply online (e-application) (see note below);
  • if part of ESDC’s Global Talent Stream, self-identify in the Come to Canada Wizard (ESDC will confirm in notes to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada [IRCC] that the applicant is part of the Global Talent Stream);
  • submit medicals up front (where required by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) and its Regulations);
  • submit the biometric fee at the time of e-application (where biometrics are required by the Regulations);
  • obtain biometrics before two weeks have elapsed from the time of application.

Applicants will not need to additionally apply for an electronic travel authorization (eTA) or visa because it will be issued as part of the work permit process.

Applicants who do not meet the above application criteria will not have submitted the necessary information to enable IRCC officers to finalize the application decision within the two-week period. Foreign nationals eligible for priority processing of applications for work permits and the related applications for temporary resident visas and eTAs are subject to all other statutory eligibility and admissibility requirements, including police certificates if required by the visa-specific instructions of their region. If insufficient information is provided to satisfy those requirements and additional documents are requested from the applicant, two-week processing will no longer apply.

Note: Instructions for accommodating foreign nationals with disabilities

Foreign nationals may contact the IRCC Call Centre or local processing office (overseas) and indicate that they are unable to complete an online work permit application because of a physical or mental disability.

Inland applications and renewals

While eligible applicants are welcome to apply for a new work permit or renewal from within Canada, the two-week processing will not apply. Inland applicants can benefit from implied status if applying to work under the same conditions as indicated in their initial job offer and work permit, without any disruption to their work. Applicants applying to change conditions on their initial work permits in Canada can consult inland processing times.

Applications submitted before June 12, 2017

Applications meeting the above criteria but submitted to IRCC before June 12, 2017, will not be eligible for two-week processing. This initiative will commence with applications that are received June 12, 2017, or later and that meet the eligibility criteria outlined above.

Processing officers should follow the instructions on employer-specific work permits with LMIA exemptions to ensure employer compliance requirements are met.

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