Almost all Canadian work permits require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), formerly called a Labor Market Opinion (LMO), in order to hire a temporary foreign worker.
Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) – All you need to know about it.
Nearly 80% of immigrants who immigrate to Canada and are granted permanent residency do so do so with job, but what about those who are looking for temporary work? There are now about 470,000 temporary foreign workers in Canada, most of whom work in the agriculture and zoo industries, hospitality and service sectors, apparel and textile industries, leisure and recreation, the arts, and private residences.
A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is typically necessary for programs that permit foreign nationals to temporarily reside and work in Canada (LMIA).
However, all streams of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), as well as several other immigration programs that allow applicants to claim points for having a job in Canada, require LMIAs. Some foreign workers are exempt from needing an LMIA.
What Is a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)?
Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) produces a document called a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) to analyze the potential consequences of hiring foreign workers on the Canadian labor market. The fundamental objective of the ESDC is to guarantee that all Canadians live better lives by supporting a highly trained, productive, and inclusive workforce to expand the country’s labor market.
There will either be a good or negative outcome once the ESDC has determined whether it is financially feasible to hire a foreign worker.
A positive LMIA implies that an employer was unsuccessful in hiring a qualified Canadian or permanent resident for a specific job in Canada.
A positive outcome demonstrates that a foreign worker is truly needed for the post, as no Canadian or permanent resident candidates were qualified. The temporary foreign worker can now apply for a work permit through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
A negative LMIA demonstrates that there are enough qualified Canadian or permanent resident candidates to fill the open position.
How Do I Obtain a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) Application?
You won’t have to, is the succinct response. Your potential employer is responsible for requesting an LMIA at least six months before the start of your contract. Depending on your salary and the median wage in the province or territory where you will be working, employers will have different application processes. Processes will be more extensive for low-wage positions than for high-wage positions.
Types of Labour Market Impact Assessment
- Express Entry LMIA
Express Entry LMIA is meant to support the applications under the Express Entry Program for obtaining Permanent Residence in Canada. Express Entry system awards 50 or 200 CRS points, depending on the level of the position, to the positive LMIA holder. The employer can subsequently hire the foreign worker. The employer can subsequently hire the foreign worker, whom they sponsored for LMIA.
2. Regular LMIA
The regular LMIA supports the application under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program for getting the work permit. Once the employer gets the LMIA, the foreign worker can apply for availing the work permit.
3. High-Wage Earner Position
For the high-wage positions, the employer needs to complete a Transition Plan outlining the intention of permanently filling the job position held by a temporary foreign worker. Although some categories of workers are exempt from this requirement. It is important for employers to keep comprehensive records of the foreign worker’s stay in the country.
While certain high-wage LMIA applications take less time to process, others may take longer. Foreign workers coming for 120 days or even less, workers in high skill trades, and workers whose salary falls in the category of top 10% Canadian earnings are likely to receive the LMIA results within ten business days.
4. Low-Wage Earner Positions
The LMIA application process of low-wage earner positions is quite different from the high-wage positions. Moreover, there are more restrictions on the low-wage job offers. Positive LMIA results of low-wage jobs will enable employers to hire foreign workers only for one year. In addition to this, the organizations having more than ten employees can have only 10% workforce of low-wage foreign workers.
In addition, if the worker’s salary is less than median in that province or territory, the employer will be capped on proportion of low-wage positions. Employers need to pay more application fees, fill out longer forms, and keep detailed records of recruitment practices.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ON LABOUR MARKET IMPACT ASSESSMENT(LMIA)
How Do I Get a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) job?
There are various streams and areas of employment that will require an LMIA:
- In-home Caregivers;
- Agricultural Workers;
- Foreign Research Academics;
- Temporary Foreign Worker Program applicants; and
- Those who want to work in Quebec.
What is an LMIA-Exemption?
An Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) -exemption is when a Canadian employer does not need to apply for an LMIA when hiring a foreign worker. These are usually indexed and arranged through the International Mobility Program.
What is the International Mobility Program?
The International Mobility Program (IMP) allows Canadian employers to hire foreign workers without an Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) under various programs. Unlike the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), the IMP was designed to help foreign workers find their way to Canada to improve the economic and cultural development in a much broader sense.
Employers will need to meet the following requirements to hire foreign workers through the IMP:
- Prove that the job or worker meets the requirements for LMIA-exemption;
- Pay the compliance fee; and
- Submit an official job offer via the IMP Employer Portal.
Open Work Permits
There are certain work programs that do not require an Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) due to the fact that it allows you to work for any employer in Canada and only require having an open work permit. These programs include:
- Post Graduation Work Permit Program;
- International Experience Canada (IEC);
- Inland Spousal Or Common-law Sponsorship Program; and
- Bridging Open Work Permit.
Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) Based Work Permits:
Typically, foreign workers and employers must go through a two-step process in order to receive a Canadian work permit. First, the applicant must submit an application to ESDC for a Labor Market Impact Assessment, followed by a second application to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) for the actual work permit.
The Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is issued by ESDC who, after considering numerous protective labour market factors, authorizes the Canadian employer to hire a foreign worker.
In June 2014, it was announced that work permits for foreign workers who require a LMIA will only be granted for a period of 1 year for all low-wage occupations.
How Long Does it take to Obtain a Labour Market Impact Assessment?
ESDC has committed to a 10 business day service standard for certain LMIA applications. The 10 day processing will only be available for applications pertaining to jobs in high demand (such as skilled trades), jobs offering wages in the top 10% of wages earned by Canadians in that province or territory, and for jobs with a short duration work period (less than 120 days).
ESDC offices are responsible for processing Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) applications, and there are ESDC offices exist in every Canadian province.
Nearly 80% of immigrants who move to Canada and receive permanent residency status find employment but what of those who seek temporary employment?
There are currently over 470,000 temporary foreign workers in Canada, predominantly finding employment in crop and animal production, accommodation and service industries, manufacturing and clothing sectors as well as in entertainment and recreation, the arts, and private households.
Programs that allow foreigners to live and work in Canada on a temporary basis usually require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).
Some foreign workers are exempt from needing an LMIA, however, all streams that fall under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) require LMIAs as well as some other immigration programs which will allow applicants to claim points for having a job in Canada.
How Do I Apply for an LMIA?
The short answer is that you won’t have to. The onus is on your prospective employer to request an LMIA at least six months before the start date of your contract. Employers will have different application procedures depending on your wage and the median wage of the province or territory you will be working in. Low-wage positions will require more processes than high-wage positions.
What Happens Once My LMIA is Approved?
If a Labour Market Impact Assessment is approved or deemed positive it will be valid for 6 months. Sometimes an LMIA may be approved in as little as 10 days. You will then be notified by your employer to say that you can apply for your work permit or permanent residency.
It is important to ensure that you receive a copy of the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and job offer from your employer as you will need it when you apply for your work permit.
Ready to Get to Work?
It’s crucial to determine whether you require an LMIA before beginning your travel through Canada. As mentioned above, there are a number of programs and immigration categories available for temporary foreign workers who are just as important to the growth and development of the Canadian economy as citizens and permanent residents are.
You must apply for your Canadian work permit after your Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) has been authorized and you have received a formal job offer.
Stay connected to our post as we would let you know steps to take in getting a Canadian work permit.
If you are seeking for job in the province of Quebec, the requirements may also vary slightly from program to program.
Working in Canada can enhance the eligibility of an individual to avail permanent residency. Acquiring Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is beneficial for both employers and employees. Make sure to take a look at the important facts relating to LMIA for better outcomes.