NAFTA Work Permits Application, Canada


A simplified and expedited NAFTA work permits option is made open to the citizens of the US and Mexico in certain occupations. NAFTA work permits are issued by the government of Canada under the International Mobility Program (IMP).

This is so because U.S. and Mexican citizens do not require a Temporary Resident Visa to enter Canada, NAFTA work permit applications may be done at a Port of Entry, at a Visa Office, or online.

Ordinarily, before a foreign national could obtain a Canadian work permit, the Canadian employer must first be accepted for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). This is an application that basically serves to show that the employer could not find a Canadian for the job, therefore necessitating the hiring of a foreign national. The work permit application is also restricted to particular processing times, the length of which differs according to the applicant’s country of nationality or legal residence.

This is not the case for those professional foreign nationals who can profit from NAFTA work permits, for which the list of eligible occupations can be found in NAFTA For these persons, the Canadian employer extending the offer of employment is exempt from the LMIA requirement, therefore rendering them more opportunities to Canadian employers and increasing the possibility of work permit approval. As well, because they are Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)-exempt, U.S. and Mexican citizens can apply for a work permit directly at the border. This is referred to as the “port of entry” application. It also avoids the often lengthy processing times usually connected with a work permit application.

Foreign nationals skilled in IT/Tech are well placed to benefit from NAFTA as two of the occupations on the NAFTA professional list fall directly in the field of IT/Tech. The two occupations are Computer Systems Analyst and Graphic Designer.

For those foreign nationals who can receive attention under either of these categories, applying for a Canadian work permit is greatly at advantage and the process is obviously simplified. With the ever-changing reliance on technology, many more areas of Canadian industry are interconnected with the IT/Tech field, therefore making workers in these categories valuable sought for. More so, these workers will be more targeted by Canadian employers to occupy various positions within their organizations.

Because of the Increased demand, it is only logical that Canadian employers will often have to look beyond the pool of available Canadian IT/Tech workers to those foreign nationals who are trained in the field. The two NAFTA professional occupations related to IT/Tech allow Mexican and American workers who are qualified in these domains to take advantage of this fact by increasing the likelihood and the speed with which Canadian work authorization can be procured.

Foreign workers: If you have received a job offer from a Canadian employer and wish to submit an inquiry about getting a work permit and working legally in Canada, please complete the online form on this page.


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