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Canada's Open Work Permit: Spouses and Working-Age Children Eligible

Is your spouse or parent a valid Work Permit holder in Canada? Starting Today, you may be eligible for an Open Work Permit!

IRCC expanded eligibility to work in Canada to spouses and working-age children through a phased approach for workers of all skill levels through a temporary 2-year measure.

Spouses and dependents being eligible for an open work permit isn’t new news however, prior to today, only spouses of work permit holders with job offers in Teer 0,1, 2, 3 were eligible for open work permits.

Now, spouses and dependents of work permit holders in all TEER categories may be eligible for an open work permit.

You may be eligible for an open work permit if you’re:

1. the spouse, common-law partner or dependent child of a worker in an occupation that’s classified under Training, Education, Experience and Responsibilities (TEER) category 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 of the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system

  • The principal foreign worker must be authorized to work for at least 6 months after you apply for your work permit.

2. the spouse, common-law partner or dependent child of an Economic Class permanent resident work permit holder. For example:

  • the spouse or common-law partner of someone accepted through the Atlantic Immigration Program

  • the spouse or common-law partner of a Quebec Selection Certificate holder who is eligible for the International Mobility Program Plus

3. a family member of a foreign representative

4. a family member of a foreign military member who is working in Canada

Families of workers in health care, trades, and hospitality, for example, would be included in this new measure.

As a result of this temporary measure, it is estimated that over 200,000 foreign workers' family members could begin working in Canada, providing more opportunities for both foreign workers seeking to work in Canada and employers addressing their labour needs!

The temporary measure will be implemented in 3 phases to ensure its successful implementation:

  • Phase 1 will allow family members of workers coming to Canada through the high-wage stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program or the International Mobility Program to apply for an open work permit.

  • Phase 2 intends to extend the measure to family members of workers from the Temporary Foreign Worker Program's low-wage stream.

  • Phase 3 will include consultation with agricultural partners and stakeholders to assess the operational feasibility of extending the measure to agricultural workers' families.

Are you Eligible for this New Measure?

If your spouse or parent is a valid Work Permit Holder in Canada, get in touch with us to discuss your eligibility and options under this new measure!

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