Temporary public policy to exempt certain permanent residence applicants from work permit requirements

Mercan Canada Employment Philippines. Inc.

Temporary public policy to exempt certain permanent residence applicants from work permit requirements

Public Policy Considerations:

Temporary Public Policies that aim to transition foreign nationals already living and working in Canada to permanent residence were launched on May 6, 2021 and closed on November 5, 2021. These measures recognize workers’ contributions during the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing need for their skills to support economic recovery. A complementary temporary public policy that facilitates the issuance of open work permits to eligible applicants under the permanent residence measures was put in place on July 4, 2021, to ensure eligible applicants could remain in status and continue working while waiting decision on their permanent residence application.

It is important that applicants and their families awaiting a decision on their permanent residence application continue to be able to maintain status and work without interruptions to support themselves and fill labour market needs as they did during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Family separation has been exacerbated by challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in light of border closures and international travel restrictions. Workers who came to Canada before or during the pandemic and have since applied for permanent residence may have been separated from family members for a long period of time. Recognizing the hardships of family separation and given longer than anticipated processing times for permanent residence applications for this Pathway, it is important to support family reunification for workers in Canada while they wait for a decision on their permanent residence application. Additionally, providing work authorization to all the eligible family members would further help fill labour shortages.

As such, to facilitate the issuance or renewal of work permits that would provide the applicants and their eligible family members with work authorization until they receive a decision on their permanent residence application, I hereby establish, pursuant to my authority under section 25.2 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (the Act), that there are sufficient public policy considerations that justify the granting of exemptions from the requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (the Regulations) listed below to foreign nationals who meet the conditions (eligibility requirements) set out below.

Accordingly, this public policy will provide exemptions from certain requirements to facilitate the issuance of open work permits to eligible individuals in Canada who submitted an application for permanent residence under the temporary public policies facilitating transition to permanent residence announced on April 14, 2021 and which came in effect on May 6, 2021. Eligible family members in Canada or abroad may also be issued an open work permit.

Conditions (eligibility requirements):

Based on public policy considerations, delegated officers may grant an exemption from the requirements of the Regulations identified if:

  1. The foreign national:
    1. is in Canada with valid temporary resident status or is eligible to restore their status under the Act;
    2. if they hold a valid work permit, that work permit expires in less than four months from the time the application for a work permit referred to in (iii) is made;
    3. has submitted an open work permit application under sections 200 or 201 of the Regulations;
    4. has submitted their work permit application using electronic means (applied online), or by any other means that is made available or specified by the Minister for that purpose if the foreign national because of disability is unable to meet the requirement to make the application, submit any document or provide signature or information using electronic means;
    5. has submitted an application for permanent residence under one of the following temporary public policies and has received confirmation that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada has received their application demonstrating that their application is within any capped volume, and that application has not been withdrawn or refused:
      1. Temporary public policy to facilitate the granting of permanent residence for foreign nationals in Canada, outside of Quebec, with recent Canadian work experience in essential occupations;
      2. Temporary public policy to facilitate the granting of permanent residence for French-speaking foreign nationals in Canada, outside of Quebec, with recent Canadian work experience in essential occupations;
      3. Temporary public policy to facilitate the granting of permanent residence for foreign nationals in Canada, outside of Quebec, with a recent credential from a Canadian post-secondary institution;
      4. Temporary public policy to facilitate the granting of permanent residence for French-speaking foreign nationals in Canada, outside of Quebec, with a recent credential from a Canadian post-secondary institution;
      5. Temporary public policy to facilitate the granting of permanent residence for foreign nationals in Canada, outside of Quebec, with a recent credential from a Canadian post-secondary institution who applied in excess of the application intake cap;
      6. Temporary public policy to facilitate the granting of permanent residence for foreign nationals in Canada, outside of Quebec, who used an alternative format to apply to the Temporary Pathway to Permanent Residence and whose applications were received in excess of the application intake cap
    6. at the time the application for permanent residence referred to in (v) was submitted, was employed in any occupation, and
      1. held a valid work permit; or
      2. was authorized to work pursuant to the Act and Regulations; and
    7. demonstrates, using results of a language test – approved under subsection 74(3) of the Regulations and provided by an institution or organization designated under that subsection – that accompanied the permanent residence application referred to in (v) when it was submitted to the Department and were less than two years old at the time of that application, the following level of language proficiency:
      1. For foreign nationals who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the public policy referred to in 1.v.a)- benchmark 4 or higher in either official language for each of the four language skill areas under either the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens;
      2. For foreign nationals who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the public policy referred to in 1.v.b)- benchmark 4 or higher in French for each of the four language skill areas under the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens;
      3. For foreign nationals who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the public policy referred to in 1.v.c)- benchmark 5 or higher in either official language for each of the four language skill areas under either the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens;
      4. For foreign nationals who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the public policy referred to in 1.v.d)- benchmark 5 or higher in French for each of the four language skill areas under the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens;
      5. For foreign nationals who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the public policy referred to in 1.v.e)- benchmark 5 or higher in either official language for each of the four language skill areas under the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens, as required by the stream applied under; or
      6. For foreign nationals who have submitted an application for permanent residence under the public policy referred to in 1.v.f)- benchmark 4 or higher in either official language for each of the four language skill areas under the Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens, as required by the stream applied under.
  2. The foreign national:
    1. is a family member – per the definition in subsection 1(3) of the Regulations – and has been included as an accompanying family member in an application for permanent residence referred to in (1)(v), of a foreign national who has applied and has been found to meet the conditions listed in 1;
    2. has submitted a work permit application under sections 200 or 201 of the Regulations;
    3. has submitted their work permit application using electronic means (applied online), or by any other means that is made available or specified by the Minister for that purpose if the foreign national because of disability is unable to meet the requirement to make the application, submit any document or provide signature or information using electronic means; and
    4. is 18 years of age or older at the time the work permit application in (ii) is submitted.

Provisions of the Regulations for which an exemption, if applicable, may be granted

  1. For foreign nationals who meet the conditions listed in 1:
    • Paragraph 200(1)(c) - the requirement to be described under this paragraph of the Regulations;
    • Paragraphs 199(a)-(i) - the requirements that a foreign national must meet in order to apply for a work permit after entering Canada.
  2. For foreign nationals who meet the conditions listed in 2:
    • Paragraph 200(1)(c) - the requirement to be described under this paragraph of the Regulations;
    • Paragraphs 199(a)-(i) - the requirements that a foreign national must meet in order to apply for a work permit after entering Canada.

Other admissibility and selection criteria

Foreign nationals eligible under this public policy are subject to all other legislative obligations and admissibility and selection criteria not exempted under this, or another, public policy.

Effective date and expiration

This public policy takes effect forty-five calendar days after it is signed and expires on December 31, 2024.

This public policy replaces the Temporary Public Policy to exempt certain permanent residence applicants from work permit requirements signed on July 4, 2021 on the date that this public policy takes effect.

This public policy applies to pending applications for a work permit made under the Temporary Public Policy to exempt certain permanent residence applicants from work permit requirements signed on July 4, 2021, on the date that this public policy takes effect and to applications received on or after the date that this public policy takes effect.

The Honourable Sean Fraser
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
Dated at Ottawa, April 21, 2022