What are your plans for the near future? How would you like to be on your way to Canada in two weeks’ time? This is entirely possible if you’re a highly skilled worker or a researcher, and Canadian employers could use your talents. All you need to do is contact such an employer and if you’re eligible for the Global Skills Strategy, your application for a work permit will be fast-tracked. Other work permit programs for Canada may take up to six months to complete the application process, while those that use the Global Talent Stream are prioritized and benefit from a 2-week processing time.
Eligibility Conditions for the Global Skills Strategy
There are two situations under which a foreign worker is eligible for the express 2-week processing time.
Other types of work permit programs take a lot of time because Canadian employers must apply for a Labour Market Impact Analysis (LMIA). However, some positions and professions are exempted from this LMIA, which speeds the processing time considerably.
Here are the criteria you must meet:
- Apply from outside Canada
- Have a job that is classified as skill type 0 (managerial position) or skill level A (professional). Your profession must be included on the National Occupational Classification (NOC)
- Your employer has submitted their job offer through the Employer Program of the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
Workers who are not LMIA-exempt
If your profession does not qualify you for an LMIA-exemption, you can still benefit from the fast-tracked processing if your employer already has a positive LMIA, obtained through the Global Talent Stream, which falls under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. If they’ve already been assessed, they don’t need to go through the whole process when they hire another skilled worker.
To apply for a permit you need to be outside Canada.
Spouse/Partner and Children
Another good thing about the Global Skills Strategy is that it allows you to bring to Canada your spouse / common law partner and your dependent children. They will need to submit a complete application at the same time as you do. If all goes well, you can all be on a plane to Canada in 2 weeks’ time.
How to Apply for 2-week Processing
To benefit from this expedited work permit application you need to have all your documents ready and follow these steps:
- Apply for your permit online, from outside Canada only
- Submit a complete application
- Include medical examination results and/or police clearance (if required by your employer)
- Submit certified translations for all documents that are not written in French or English
- Submit biometrics results (if required) within 2 weeks of submitting the application
- Pay the processing fee
Family members should follow the same steps.
How long are the Global Skills Strategy work permits valid
Highly-skilled workers can work in Canada for 15 consecutive days once every six months, or for 30 consecutive days once every 12 months.
Researchers get a better deal. They can work up to 120 days every 12 months, on condition that they do their research at a publicly-funded Canadian institution.
In order to extend your stay, you have two options
- Apply for express permit processing from outside Canada
- Stay in Canada and wait for 6/12 months before you are allowed to work again.
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