Foreign nationals need an LMIA approval letter to apply for a permit to work in Canada. The Temporary Foreign Worker Program endues employers to make such requests to hire internationals. With confirmation, a foreign worker can get an LMIA-based work permit.
The Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) accepts and processes LMIA requests under eight (8) streams. Each type specifies requirements for employers’ eligibility, job advertising, forms, supporting documents, processing fee, and timeline. While application requirements vary, assessment is always to answer the core question. What is the impact of hiring a foreign worker? Whether it affects the Canadian labour market positively or negatively? ESDC uses seven factors to assess each LMIA request. It evaluates whether Canadian workers, amongst citizens or permanent residents, are available to do the job offered to a foreign worker. If not, then a confirmation letter to hire a temporary worker to fill a labour or skills shortage will be issued. In other words, employing a foreign national must have a neutral or positive effect on the Canadian labour market. Temporary workers with positive LMIA can get from 50 to 200 additional points in Express Entry, which helps them immigrate to Canada.
LMIA Confirmation Letter
A confirmation letter is not always required. For certain jobs, workers can get an LMIA-exempt work permit. Thus, a foreign worker with a job offer from a Canadian employer can directly apply for a work permit. ESDC’s confirmation is not needed and IRCC can issue work authorization without it.
On the other hand, there are also restrictions. Ineligible employers can not apply. If a work is in the restricted industry sector or occupation, ESDC will not even process and likely refuse.