Apply for a work permit — Temporary workers

We are expanding our fingerprint and photo requirements

Starting July 31, 2018, you will need to give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics) when you apply for a work permit if you are from Europe, the Middle East or Africa.

Find out if these changes apply to you.

Follow these steps to apply for a work permit.

1. Determine if you will apply online or on paper

Apply online

You must have:

  • access to a scanner or camera to make electronic copies of your documents to upload, and
  • a valid credit card to pay with.

Determine your eligibility and documents required to apply online.

Note: If you provide an email address on your application, please check your email account often for automated emails from us regarding your case. Some spam filters block these emails. Make sure that our emails are not blocked. If you’re not sure whether our emails are being sent, please check your account often.

Apply on paper

Follow steps 2 to 5 below.

Note for IEC and Global Skills Strategy applicants: If you’re an applicant under the International Experience Canada program or eligible for two-week processing through the Global Skills Strategy, you can only submit your work permit application online.

2. Get the right documents

The specific documents you’ll need depend on the type of work permit you are applying for.

You will also need proof that you meet the requirements of the job, such as:

  • proof of education, or
  • work experience.

If the type of work permit you will be applying for is an open work permit, you will not need to include documents or other information from an employer in your application.

Employer-specific work permit

If your employer needs a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) you need to provide:

  • a copy of the approved LMIA
  • the employment contract

If your employer doesn’t need a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) you need to provide:

  • the offer of employment number (ex A1234567) your employer got when they submitted the offer of employment through the Employer Portal
  • the employment contract

Open work permit

You don’t need to include documents or information from an employer with your open work permit application.

3. Get the application package

The instruction guides have instructions on how to fill out the application. They also tell you which documents you’ll need to submit to get your work permit.

There are different guides and forms to apply for a work permit, depending on where you apply from:

Find out the requirements for where to apply in order to choose the best option for you.

Global Skills Strategy applicants: If you want to benefit from two-week processing you must apply from outside of Canada.

Passport and entry into Canada

To work in Canada, you must meet the requirements for a work permit. You may also need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) or a visitor visa, depending on your nationality. The eTA or visa will be issued at the same time as your work permit. You do not need to make a separate application or pay an additional fee.

4. Pay the application fees

In many countries, you can pay the fee in the local currency. You can find more information about the payment methods available to you by using the pay your fees tool.

Please note that if you apply on paper at a VAC, you will have to pay the VAC service fees. These fees are not included in your IRCC application fees.

In rare cases, some workers may be fee exempt.

5. Submit your application

Note: Families should send their applications in one package to the location where the principal applicant will be processed (based on their type of application).

Select the country/territory you will be applying from to find out where to submit your application. You can choose your country of nationality or the country/territory where you have been legally admitted:


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