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Canadian NAFTA Work Visas Now Issued Up To Three Years

Professionals from the USA and Mexico seeking to work temporarily in Canada under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) can now receive Canadian work permits for up to three years, Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, announced today. Previously, NAFTA workers were required to renew their work permit every 12 months.

Canadian NAFTA Work Visas for Professionals in North America

NAFTA work permits are an excellent option for North American professionals seeking to work in Canada including lawyers, doctors, dentists and teachers. In addition, this will also help Canadian employers remain competitive by ensuring they have access to necessary skilled labour,” said Minister Kenney.

Canada grants about 5000 such NAFTA work permits to Americans and about 150 more to Mexicans to work in Canada every year.

Extended NAFTA Permit Period Ensures Stability for Employers

“This extension, along with our Action Plan for Faster Immigration, will greatly benefit the Canadian economy by helping ensure greater continuity and stability for both employers and workers,” continued Minister Kenney. “In a time of economic uncertainty, highly skilled migrants encourage innovation and economic growth, making us more competitive economically.”

By easing the administrative requirements, employers can now be more confident that they will have access to the skilled labour they need for a longer period.

Following in US Footsteps

The Canadian rule change follows a similar one made in October by U.S. authorities that allow Canadian engineers, computer scientists and other professionals to obtain three-year TN Visa work permits in America. Mexico is also considering such a change.

Canada, the U.S. and Mexico agreed on labour mobility standards for 63 different professional occupations when NAFTA was negotiated in 1993, allowing professionals from those occupations to work in another NAFTA country without having to re-qualify under local certification standards. In all cases, a professional must have a firm job offer before going to work in the other country.

Be a Part of the Positive Permit Change

We think this change for Canada Work Visas is great news for our US and Mexican clients. Wishing to extend your employment in Canada, or interested in applying for a Canadian NAFTA Work Visa? Contact us now, we can help!

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About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

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24 thoughts on “Canadian NAFTA Work Visas Now Issued Up To Three Years

  1. osagie ayere

    I want to apply for Canadian permanent residence under the Federal Skilled Worker category. I am a skilled plummber and have over five years of experience.

    Reply
  2. Vasia K

    Hello!I am 22 years old and I am from Greece!I want to move and work in Montreal!I have two diplomas as a Fashion Designer-Stylist-Patronist.Can you please give me some informations about the Visas or what I have to do?

    Thank you in advance!

    Reply
  3. Dr.Urmee

    I am a medical officer for the Government of Bangladesh. I have three years of experience in the related field. My husband is a production manager in a leather factory. He has three years of experience in this field. How can I apply for a work permit in Canada?

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Dr. Urmee,

      To apply for a Work Permit, you must have a job offer from a Canadian employer and your employer must get a positive labour market opinion. Also, you must satisfy a visa officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your work permit and show that you have enough money to support yourself and your family while you are in Canada.

      Thank you.

      Reply
  4. syed amir raza

    I am a good driver in Pakistan. I want apply for a Work Permit to work in Canada. What are the requirements?

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Syed Amir Raza,

      To apply for a Work Permit from outside Canada, you must submit a job offer from a Canadian employer and your employer need to apply for a Labour Market Opinion. You must also satisfy a visa officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your work permit and show that you have enough money to support yourself while you are in Canada.

      Hope this helps.

      Reply
  5. tamana

    How can I apply for a Work Permit for Canada from Punjab(INDIA).

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Tamana,

      To apply for a Work Permit, you need a job offer a Canadian employer and a labour market opinion obtained by your employer. Also, you need to satisfy a visa officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your work permit and you have enough money to support yourself and your family while you are in Canada.

      There may be additional country specific requirements you need to satisfy. Please consult the website of the visa office responsible for your area for more information.

      Thank you.

      Reply
  6. FAZAL MAHMOOD

    How can I apply for a Work Permit from Pakistan?

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Mr. Mahmood,

      You need to have a job offer from a Canadian employer and your employer need to obtain a positive labour market opinion. You also need to satisfy a visa officer that you will leave Canada at the end of your work permit and show that you have enough money to support yourself during your stay in Canada.

      Thank you.

      Reply
  7. Sam

    Hello, I am a Canadian citizen and my boyfriend is American. Right now, I have one year work visa in the U.S. but we are hoping to move back to Canada. I was wondering what my boyfriend needs to do to be able to do this. Does he have to have a job offer before we move there? Or can we move back to Canada and then start looking for jobs? What kind of forms need to be filled out?

    Thanks you.

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Sam,

      If he wishes to immigrate to Canada, he may apply as a Skilled Worker. To be eligible, he must have a valid offer of arranged employment in Canada OR have one year of continuous full time paid work experience in one of the occupations listed on the Canadian National Occupation Classification list. In order to give you any further guidance, I would need more information about his work experience.

      Thank you.

      Reply
  8. AKM

    Dear AKM,

    My employer in the U.S. would transfer me to its Canadian branch. Would I be eligible to apply for a Work Permit in Canada based on this position?

    Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear AKM,

      You may qualify under the Intra-Company Transferee category and gain quicker and easier temrporary entry to Canada. For this you must:

      – have worked continuously for at least one year in the preceding three years for the same or affiliated employer in the United States;
      – be transferred to Canada to work temporarily for the same or an affiliated employer; and
      – work in a capacity that is managerial, executive or that involves specialized knowledge.

      Reply
  9. Sandeep Singh Danoo

    How can I apply for a Canadian Work Permit from India? What requirements do I need to meet in order to qualify?

    Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Mr. Sandeep Singh Danoo,

      To apply for a work permit from outside Canada, you must have a job offer from a Canadian employer and a positive Labour Market Opinion (LMO). It is up to your employer to get the LMO.

      Generally, you also need to submit documentation showing that you will leave Canada at the end of your work permit and you have enough money to support yourself while in Canada.

      You may also need to confirm the requirements with the visa office responsible for your area (i.e. High Commission of Canada to India).

      Hope this helps.

      Reply
  10. gurdeep singh

    Hi,

    What are the requirements for applying for a Work Permit?

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Gurdeep Singh,

      If you are applying for a Work Permit from outside Canada and have a job offer from a Canadian employer and a positive labour market opinion (LMO), you may be eligible for a Work Permit.

      Hope this helps.

      Reply
  11. Rodrigo

    Hello

    I have a job offer in Toronto, under the NAFTA regulations. If I got a work permit under the NAFTA regulations, can my family members follow me to Canada? Also, can I later apply for PR based on this job offer? Thanks.

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Rodrigo,

      Your immediate family members may follow you as dependents under your application. In order to apply for PR, you need to qualify under the Skilled Worker category. For this, you either have to have a valid offer of arranged employment or have one year of continuous full time paid work experience in certain types of occupations listed on the National Occupational Classification list.

      Hope this helps.

      Reply
  12. adufe sanmi

    How can I apply for a Canadian Work Permit from Nigeria? What requirements do I need to meet in order to qualify?

    Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Alicia Kim

      Dear Adufe,

      In order to apply for a Work Permit from Nigeria, you need to apply to the Canadian visa office responsible for your area. You need to submit completed application forms and necessary documents. These documents should include a job offer letter from your employer and proof that you meet the requirements of the job being offered.

      Thank you.

      Reply
  13. Michael Niren

    Dear Chima
    Please call our office at 416 410 7484 to arrange a discussion to proceed further.

    Best Regards
    Michael Niren

    Reply

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