Apply for an open work permit under a public policy

Due to COVID-19, you may be eligible to apply for a one-time open work permit of up to 18 months if you apply online by July 27, 2021.

Who can apply

To be eligible for this open work permit, you must meet the following 5 requirements:

  1. Your post-graduation work permit (PGWP)
    1. expired on or after January 30, 2020, or
    2. will expire within 4 months from the date you apply for this open work permit.
  2. You were in Canada as of January 27, 2021, when the public policy took effect, and have stayed in Canada since then.
  3. You either
    1. have temporary resident status (this could be from having a valid PGWP, visitor record, or another permit that allows you to stay in Canada), or
    2. lost your temporary resident status, but you’ve already applied to restore it, or
    3. lost your temporary resident status, but you’ll apply to restore it at the same time as you apply for this open work permit
  4. You include in your application that you’re applying for an open work permit under this public policy.
  5. You have a valid passport.
    1. The work permit will be issued for up to 18 months from the date of approval or until your passport expires, whichever comes first. For example, if your passport is valid for 6 months, then you will be issued an open work permit for 6 months.
    2. To maximize the duration of the open work permit, make sure your passport is valid for at least 18 months from the date of approval.

How to apply

You must apply online by July 27, 2021, for this open work permit.

You can only get this open work permit once, and it cannot be extended. If your passport is valid for 18 months or longer, then you’ll be issued an open work permit for 18 months.

If you’re a representative

If you’re applying for a client, you can still use the Authorized Paid Representatives Portal to apply for an open work permit under this public policy. To apply:

  • follow the normal process for extending a work permit
  • attach a letter explaining that you’re applying under the open work permit public policy for former or current PGWP holders

Step 1: Make sure you have what you need

To apply online, you need

Step 2: Read the instruction guide

You should read the instruction guide before you complete your application. The guide will explain how to complete each field on the form.

Venezuelan passport holders

You may need to complete extra steps when you fill out your application.

Step 3: Pay your fees

In most cases, your fees will include processing fees for you and anyone you include on your application. We’ll ask you to pay your fees at the end of your application.

For this application, you’ll need to pay the

COVID-19: Changes to biometrics requirement for in-Canada temporary residence applicants

For now, if you’re in Canada and applying to work, study or stay temporarily in Canada, you do not need to give your biometrics. Learn more about the exemption.

Step 4: Create your online account or sign in

You need an account to apply online. You can use your account to

How to start your application

Once you sign in to your account, you’ll need to:

Get your document checklist

You must answer some questions to create a personalized document checklist.

Make sure you answer these questions correctly
  • You would like to work temporarily.
    • Answer either less than or more than 6 months.
  • You must select worker as your current immigration status.
  • Answer “yes” when asked

Does one of the following apply to you:

  • I am subject to a removal order that is unenforceable
  • I applied for a study or work permit before entering Canada which was approved, but not issued at a port of entry
  • I am in primary or secondary school, or a visiting or exchange student, in Canada with visitor status
  • I am applying for an open work permit under an active public policy or pilot program announced by IRCC
  • I am a student who has completed a program of study that is a prerequisite to my enrolment at a designated learning institution with visitor status in Canada
  • I applied for permanent residence and was found eligible (first stage approval) under one of the following classes:
    • Spouse or Common-law Partner in Canada
    • Humanitarian and Compassionate cases
    • Protected Persons in Canada
    • Live-in Caregiver in Canada

Upload the correct documents

You need to include the documents listed in your application, including

Create an account or sign in.

If you can’t apply online

You can submit a paper application if either

What to do if you can’t apply online.

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: