Can I Change My Visitor Visa to a Work Permit in Canada?

By Remitbee - May 5, 2022

As of 2022, more than 38 million people live in Canada, and over 300,000 new immigrants live in the country. But do all of them have work permits? Do you know that you can change it to a work permit if you only have a visitor visa?

Work permits might take longer than visiting visas. So if you think you'll be needing a work permit later in the future, it is best to know what steps to follow in changing a visitor visa.

In Canada, any visitor can apply for a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) and subsequently acquire a Work Permit, allowing them to change their status from visitor to worker.

Workers who do not have a Work Permit are not permitted to stay and work in Canada. Visitors and temporary residents can extend their stay only if their visas are still valid.

Who can apply for the work permit?

Anyone can apply for a work permit from Canada as long as the applicant has the following requirements. The following are the requirements for getting a work permit:

  • A valid passport or travel document
  • Two recent passport photographs
  • The application fee
  • The letter of introduction
  • Proof of financial support and
  • A job offer letter in Canada

    When applying for a work permit, certain conditions must be met depending on where you are. You must prove that you will be leaving Canada when your work permit expires, regardless of where you use it or what type of work visa you apply for.

You must also show that you have enough money to sustain everyone in your family in Canada and when you return home. You must follow the country's law and have no criminal history. It's also essential to be in good health and, if necessary, have a medical examination and provide any other documents with the officer's request to show your right to be in the nation.

The following are steps on how to change one's Visitor Visa to Work Permit in Canada:

Step 1: Submit an Application for a Job in Canada

If you're wondering if you can change your Canada visitor visa to a work permit. Yes, you can. You can do that by applying for a work permit from within Canada. First, you must make sure that you have a job.

To apply for a job in Canada, you may look for jobs on Indeed, LinkedIn, Glassdoor, or the individual company's website. However, keep in mind that your CV should adhere to Canadian standards to be considered.

Step 2: Make sure you are eligible to apply for a work permit

After looking for a job and getting accepted, consider changing your visitor visa to a work permit. Apply online or by mail once you've confirmed your eligibility. To be eligible, you must:

  • Have a valid visitor visa
  • Have a letter of introduction from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
  • Have a letter approved by the LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment)
  • Make sure to comply with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations
  • Be admissible to Canada and
  • Proof to depart Canada at the end of your work permit

    Note: The LMIA process protects the Canadian labour market by demonstrating that no Canadian worker is available for the job before hiring a foreign worker. A month before applying for an LMIA, the Canadian employer must publicize the post to check whether Canadians are available.

LMIA may be requested if the company cannot find a Canadian. An LMIA request typically takes two months to be processed by human resources. So, between advertising and the LMIA process, it takes at least three months.

Step 3: Submit an application for a work permit

After doing steps 1 and 2, you may proceed to submit your application for a work permit. When applying for a work permit from within Canada, you will need to fill out an online application. There is also a paper application available for particular circumstances.

Your application must include:

  • A valid email address and telephone number,
  • Your current residential address in Canada,
  • Your passport or travel document number and expiration date,
  • The names of other countries you have visited before coming to Canada where you received a visa or work permit and
  • A yes/no response if you've been denied entry into any country other than your own

Expect to pay two fees: the first is the processing fee, and the second is an open work permit holder fee. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will next determine whether or not to provide you with a work permit.

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