Find out if you need a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), and how to hire a temporary foreign worker
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Find out if you need an LMIA
Most employers need an LMIA before they can hire a temporary foreign worker. Before you start the hiring process, you must determine if you need an LMIA.
An LMIA confirms
- there is a need for a temporary foreign worker
- no Canadians or permanent residents are available to do the job
To see if you and the temporary foreign worker you want to hire are exempt from needing an LMIA or work permit, do one of the following:
- review the LMIA exemption codes and work permit exemptions
- select the LMIA exemption or work permit code that seems most relevant to your hiring situation and read the detailed description
- if an exemption code applies to you, you’ll need to include it in your offer of employment
- contact the International Mobility Workers Unit if you’re hiring a temporary foreign worker who is both
- currently outside Canada
- from a country whose nationals are visa-exempt
How to get an LMIA
You’ll need an LMIA from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).
The LMIA application process depends on the type of program you’re hiring through.
Find out how to apply for an LMIA to hire
- high-wage workers
- low-wage workers
- workers through the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program
- workers through the Agricultural Stream
How to hire if you need an LMIA
The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) lets you hire temporary foreign workers to fill labour and skill shortages.
Once an LMIA has been issued, you should provide a copy of the confirmation letter to each temporary foreign worker and tell each of them to apply for a work permit.
You’ll need an LMIA from ESDC, Service Canada.
How to hire if you don’t need an LMIA
The International Mobility Program lets you hire temporary foreign workers without an LMIA. Check the LMIA exemption code that matches your respective job posting.
If you hire a temporary foreign worker through the International Mobility Program, you need to
- pay an employer compliance fee
- submit an offer of employment form through the Employer Portal
This must be done before the temporary foreign worker you want to hire can apply for a work permit.
Francophone Mobility for temporary foreign workers outside of Quebec
Under the IMP, Francophone Mobility offers an exemption from the LMIA for the hiring of Francophone or bilingual temporary foreign workers outside Quebec.
Francophone Mobility offers many benefits to employers such as the ability to offer services in both French and English, while developing minority language communities across the country.
Find more information on how to hire Francophone or bilingual workers outside Quebec.
Hiring in the province of Quebec
If you’re an employer in Quebec and are hiring through the TFWP, the temporary foreign worker will need a Quebec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) from the Quebec Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) before a work permit can be issued.
If you’re an employer in Quebec and are hiring a temporary foreign worker through the IMP, a CAQ from the MIFI is not required.
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