Temporary Foreign Worker Program and International Mobility Program: Labour Market Impact Assessments and exemptions

This section contains policy, procedures and guidance used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada staff. It is posted on the Department’s website as a courtesy to stakeholders.

In most cases, an employer must obtain a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to hire a temporary foreign worker. The LMIA must be attached to most work permit applications.

LMIA[R203]

LMIA exemptions

Note: On February 21, 2015, new regulations came into effect requiring employers of LMIA-exempt foreign nationals to provide their offer of employment directly to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and pay a new employer compliance fee before the work permit application is submitted. For further information, see Employer-specific work permits with Labour Market Impact Assessment exemptions.

Agreements [R204]

For some jobs, employers do not require an LMIA to hire a foreign worker. Certain categories of workers may be exempt from the LMIA requirement because the job is in the interest of Canada or because it falls under an international trade agreement, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), or an agreement between the federal government and a provincial or territorial government.

Officers should ensure that the terms of the agreements are respected and that only those types of workers stipulated in the agreements gain access to Canada. Persons who are entering only for meetings pursuant to these agreements may be authorized to enter Canada as business visitors.

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