Revocation of work permit due to public policy considerations

In 2013, amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) provided the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) (then Citizenship and Immigration Canada [CIC]) with the authority to issue Ministerial Instructions (MIs) specifying when IRCC can revoke a work permit and the Minister of Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) with the authority to issue MIs specifying when ESDC can revoke, suspend, or refuse to process a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). This authority for MIs is tied to the overall objectives that the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) and International Mobility Program (IMP) be used as intended and that the employment of the temporary foreign workers does not have a significant negative effect on the Canadian labour market or economy.

IRCC has issued MIs under the new subsection 30(1.41) of the IRPA regarding the revocation of work permits based on the public policy considerations. The designated authority (PDF, 1.21 MB) and final decision to revoke work permits is limited to specific positions in IRCC Case Management Branch (CMB) only.

The MIs took effect on December 31, 2013.

Ministerial Instructions public policy considerations

Subsection A30(1.41) allows for an officer to revoke a work permit if, in the officer’s opinion, public policy considerations that are specified in instructions given by the Minister justify the revocation. Ministerial Instructions 11 (MI11): Work Permits specify the public policy considerations.

The public policy considerations that may justify revocation of a work permit are as follows:

A. Revocation of a work permit where the associated LMIA has been revoked

When ESDC has revoked an LMIA for public policy considerations under paragraph A30(1.43)(a), a designated IRCC officer may subsequently revoke any work permit that was issued based on the revoked LMIA. Revocation of the LMIAs will be assessed by ESDC on a case-by-case basis based on the public policy considerations summarized below:

  1. new information that employment of the temporary foreign worker has or will have a significant negative effect on the labour market;
  2. employer providing false, misleading or inaccurate information;
  3. employer’s name has been added to the ineligible employer list.

ESDC will notify IRCC through the CMB, Investigations and Exceptional Cases (IECD) mailbox when they begin to consider revoking an LMIA for any of the public policy considerations under their MIs.

Once notified, the CMB will

  1. identify all work permits issued, refused or pending associated to the LMIA under consideration for revocation and provide this information to ESDC;
  2. input an “Info Alert – Tip Information” in the Global Case Management System (GCMS) on the Client screen or a case note in pending applications; and
  3. contact the visa office where a work permit application has been approved (given a port of entry [POE] Letter of Introduction) but the foreign national has not yet arrived at the POE and been issued the work permit.

The visa office will attempt to contact the foreign national and inform them not to travel. ESDC will also be informing the employer to contact their employees with this instruction.

See Processing instructions below for further information.

B. Revocation of an LMIA-exempt work permit where the employment of the foreign national is having a significantly greater negative effect than benefit with respect to the development of a strong Canadian economy

Specific policies for this public policy consideration are under development. Processing officers may provide information for review by the CMB through the IECD mailbox where they believe that the information they possess may warrant action under the MIs. Officers should provide as much information as possible for the CMB to use for follow-up as required.

C. Revocation of a work permit where the employer has provided false, misleading or inaccurate information

In order for this public policy consideration to be applied, the employer must have been the source of the false, misleading or inaccurate information provided to IRCC.

If the foreign national is the source of the false, misleading or inaccurate information, processing officers should assess the misrepresentation as per section A40. Please see the Enforcement Manual chapter ENF 1 (PDF, 619 KB) for further instructions on inadmissibilities.

Example: The employer provides documents directly to IRCC (Offer of Employment or information upon request of an officer) to support an LMIA-exempt work permit application, indicating the business had a positive income. After work permit issuance, information is obtained that employer has declared a loss on his business tax return for the same time period.

D. Revocation of a work permit where the employer’s name has been added to the ineligible employer list under subsection 209.91(3) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR)

Once IRCC or ESDC places an employer on the ineligible employer list under subsection R209.91(3), the work permits associated with the employer may be revoked.

E. Revocation of an LMIA-exempt work permit issued to any foreign national on the basis of their relationship with another foreign national and the principal foreign worker’s work permit is now revoked (e.g., exemption C41)

If a spouse or common-law partner was issued an LMIA-exempt work permit under the public policy, competitiveness and economy (i.e., spouse of a high skilled worker) and the principal worker’s work permit is revoked, the spousal work permit will also be revoked.

Processing instructions

Associating spouses or common-law partners at time of work permit issuance

In order to facilitate the revocation of spousal work permits when the principal foreign workers work permit has been revoked, processing officers will ensure that for any work permit issued under LMIA-exemption code C41, the principal foreign worker is associated to the C41 work permit holder. See Public policy, competitiveness and economy.

Steps for revoking work permits

Step 1: Information received by IRCC regarding a situation that may meet one of the public policy considerations

One of the following applies:

  • ESDC will provide information to the CMB IECD when they are reviewing an LMIA for revocation and request confirmation of work permit status for all positions listed on the LMIA. ESDC will inform the CMB IECD when a final decision is made to revoke an LMIA.
  • A IRCC employee may receive information from a variety of sources that a public policy consideration may have been triggered for an LMIA-exempt employer. The IRCC employee will refer the information to the CMB IECD mailbox, indicating in the subject line that the referral is in regard to the MIs. The email should include all available information and documentation the officer has received.

Step 2: Procedural fairness steps to be taken by the CMB to the employer

  • Where an employer has not had an opportunity to respond to any allegations, the CMB will contact the employer with a request for confirmation of the information (EMPLOYER - Procedural fairness letter) and provide 30 business days for response. The letter should include a request for the list of foreign workers presently in their employ who are affected by the specific public policy consideration and for the employees’ direct contact information.
  • If, after receiving the information from the employer, the analyst is of the opinion that the employer’s situation falls within the public policy considerations, the analyst will complete the template “Revocation of Work Permit Assessment” and refer the request, supporting evidence and their recommendation to a designated decision maker (PDF, 1.21 MB) for a final determination.
  • The decision maker will review the information and make a final determination as to whether the situation falls within the public policy considerations for revocation of work permits.

Step 3: Decision made to revoke

When the decision is made to revoke the work permits based on the public policy considerations specified in the MIs, the foreign worker will be sent a notification letter (EMPLOYEE (FW) Notification Letter – Final Decision – Work Permits revoked) stating that their work permit will be revoked in 90 days. The foreign national will have temporary resident status and continued authorization to work until the specified date in the letter. This allows time for the foreign national to arrange to leave Canada or submit an application for a new work permit with a new employer. If applicable, the associated spouse or common-law partner will also be sent a notification of revocation of work permit at the same time.

  • The notification letter will be sent by email if one was provided with the work permit application and/or a hard copy mailed to the contact address provided by the employer in the first procedural fairness step.
  • The employer will also be sent a notification letter (EMPLOYER - Notification Letter –Final Decision – Work Permits revoked) with the information regarding the work permits that were revoked.
  • A Re-Assess TR Authorization activity with a subcategory of work permit will be created in GCMS. The Re-assessment reason field will show Revoke Authorization.

Step 3: Decision made to not revoke

If the decision is made that the situation does not fall within the public policy considerations, the decision maker will note the reasons in GCMS under the Re-Assess TR Authorization activity.

The CMB IECD will send the employer a letter indicating that the assessment is complete and no further action will be taken at this time.

Further contact after revocation of work permit

Revocation of a foreign national’s work permit does not make the foreign national inadmissible, as the revocation is based on the employer’s actions and not the foreign national’s.

Therefore, should the foreign national appear for examination at a POE after a work permit revocation, they should be examined as per the standard procedures.

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