New Rules for Post Graduate Work Permits (PGWP)

post graduate work visa

Update: The following guidelines are effective for all post-graduation work permit applications received on or after February 14, 2019. The previous guidelines apply to all applications received before February 14, 2019. Post-graduation work permit applicants who have been refused the work permit based on the previous guidelines may submit a new application under the new guidelines, effective February 14, 2019, if they are eligible to apply.

Understanding the New Rules for Post Graduate Work Permits 2019

The LMIA requires that an employer demonstrate that there are no Canadians who can fill the position and therefore the company is entitled to hire a foreign worker. The exemption to the LMIA process was a great benefit for recent graduates and employers alike. However, the Canadian government has taken away this exemption and now post-grad students and employers are required to go through the LMIA process, just like other candidates.

This means that the employer must recruit for four weeks and show that it could not find a qualified worker in Canada before it hires a post-graduate student. This is a very unfortunate development and requires that employers start the process early if they intend to hire post-grad workers. Both student and employer should be getting their paperwork together as early as possible.

Post-graduation work permits are exempt from Labour Market Impact Assessments. They are considered open and coded as C43.

With a post-graduation work permit, as with all open work permits, graduates can

  • work full time
  • work part time
  • be self-employed

Am I Eligible for a PGWP in 2019?

Applicants can receive only 1 post-graduation work permit in their lifetime.

To obtain a post-graduation work permit, the applicant must currently hold valid temporary status or have left Canada. They must have graduated from an eligible designated learning institution (DLI). They must also submit clear evidence that they meet all of the following criteria:

  • They have completed an academic, vocational or professional training program at an eligible institution in Canadathat is at least 8 months in duration leading to a degree, diploma or certificate.
  • They have maintained full-time student status in Canada during each academic session of the program or programs of study they have completed and submitted as part of their post-graduation work permit application. Exceptions can be made only for the following:
    • leave from studies
    • final academic session
  • They have received a transcript and an official letter from the eligible DLI confirming that they have met the requirements to complete their program of study.Note: The transcript and official letter must be included in a post-graduation work permit application.

Within 180 days of the date of applying for the post-graduation work permit, applicants must also meet one of the following criteria:

  • They hold a valid study permit.
  • They held a study permit.
  • They were authorized to study in Canada without the requirement to obtain a study permit under paragraphs 188(1)(a) and (b) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations.

Eligible Institutions for a PGWP

The applicant must provide evidence that the program or programs of study were taken in Canada at one of the following eligible Canadian designated learning institutions (DLIs):

  • a public post-secondary institution, such as
    • a college
    • a trade or technical school
    • a university
    • CEGEP (in Quebec)
  • a private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as public institutions in Quebec
  • a private secondary or post-secondary institution in Quebec offering qualifying programs of 900 hours or longer leading to
    • a diploma of vocational studies (DVS)
    • an attestation of vocational specialization (AVS)
  • a Canadian, private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees, such as an associate, bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree, but only if the student is enrolled in a program of study leading to a degree, as authorized by the province, which may not include all programs of study offered by the private institution

See the DLI list to verify schools’ eligibility.

Temporary resident visas (TRVs) for post-graduation work permit applicants

The following applies to applicants from countries whose nationals require a visa:

  • For post-graduation work permit applications submitted from outside Canada, a TRV is issued upon approval of the post-graduation work permit.
  • For post-graduation work permit applications submitted from within Canada, a TRV is not issued upon approval of the application. The applicant must submit a separate TRV application if their TRV has expired, and they would like to travel outside Canada and return.

 

Electronic travel authorizations (eTAs) for post-graduation work permit applicants

eTAs for post-graduation work permit applicants from countries whose nationals do not require a visa are issued upon approval of the post-graduation work permit application. Clients who are eligible for an eTA through eTA expansion are also issued an eTA upon the issuance of the post-graduation work permit.

If an eTA is issued with a post-graduation work permit for an eTA expansion client, and the client holds a valid TRV, the officer should not cancel the existing TRV. Until it expires, the client can continue to use the TRV to travel to Canada by

  • air
  • land
  • sea

Are You a Post Graduate Interested in a Work Permit?

If you have immigration questions regaring the new rules for post graduate work permits, VisaPlace is here to guide you through the immigration process. We work with qualified immigration lawyers who can help you with your work permit application. Contact us to book a consultation.

Michael Niren

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

  • Omoyeni Rasaq

    Hi,

    Please I have a question I have a postgraduate woek permit that is only valid for a year,which is expiring next year March.But I’m pregnant now and I have to stop working for a while to be entitled to my maternity leave bonus.my question now is if I stop working ,how do I go about completing my work hours to enable me apply for a PR ,or is it possible I get an extension while on leave .

    • Immigration Lawyer (rachel)

      Hi Omoyeni,

      Thank you for contacting us at VisaPlace! We would have to take a closer look at your case to best advise you on how to gain PR status. We would love to help! Hiring an immigration lawyer will help you get answers to all of your questions, plus it will increase the chance of getting a visa approved. Please, complete this form for me http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ it is just a quick and easy way for me to learn more details about your situation so that I will be able to advise you accurately and determine the best avenue for us to take to give you the best legal advice.

      The above response is for informational purposes only and does not form a lawyer-client relationship nor should it be construed to be legal advice.

  • Sachin

    Hi, I have received admission letter from St Lawrence college Canada for one year post graduate course & I’ll be studying another year soon after completing the previous course for a year. Totally I’ll be studying 1 year (8 months) + 1 year (8 months) = 2 years (16 months). Am I getting post work permit for 1 year, 2 years or 3 years. Please resolve this issue. I heard from many of my seniors in Canada that I may get a year, couple of years or three years of work permit. I’m confused please help me.

    • Rachel

      Hi Sachin,

      Thank you for contacting us at VisaPlace! We would love to help resolve the issue, but will have to take a closer look at your case to determine what kind of post graduate work permit you will have and be eligible for. Hiring an immigration lawyer will help you get answers to all of your questions, plus it will increase the chance of getting a visa approved. Please, complete this form for me http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ it is just a quick and easy way for me to learn more details about your situation so that I will be able to advise you accurately and determine the best avenue for us to take to give you the best legal advice.

      The above response is for informational purposes only and does not form a lawyer-client relationship nor should it be construed to be legal advice.

  • satwant singh

    hi,,,i want to know the maximum time limit for application process under post graduate LMIA for office job under TFWP category for canada immigration

    • Immigration Lawyers

      Hi Satwant,

      Thank you for contacting us at VisaPlace! We would love to help answer all of your immigration questions. Hiring an immigration lawyer will help you get answers to all of your questions, plus it will increase the chance of getting a visa approved. Please, complete this form for me http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ it is just a quick and easy way for me to learn more details about your situation so that I will be able to advise you accurately and determine the best avenue for us to take to give you the best legal advice.

      The above response is for informational purposes only and does not form a lawyer-client relationship nor should it be construed to be legal advice.

  • nidhi waswani

    hi,,,i want to know the maximum time limit for application process under post graduate LMIA for office job under TFWP category for canada immigration

    • Immigration Lawyers

      Hi Nidhi,

      Thank you for contacting us at VisaPlace! We would love to help answer all of your immigration questions. Hiring an immigration lawyer will help you get answers to all of your questions, plus it will increase the chance of getting a visa approved. Please, complete this form for me http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ it is just a quick and easy way for me to learn more details about your situation so that I will be able to advise you accurately and determine the best avenue for us to take to give you the best legal advice.

      The above response is for informational purposes only and does not form a lawyer-client relationship nor should it be construed to be legal advice.

  • mihir patel

    Hello,

    My query is that I have a employer who is ready to apply for a LMIA in Recreation Manager job in Alberta. So, he posted the ad for 5-6 months and there were technically no applicants except me.

    I have finished interview and my recruitment will start from next month. My question is I will have three years open work permit which is post grad permit from october. So, in regards to hiring what should the Employer and me do in order to get a successful LMIA?

    Thanks in advance

    • Mira Freiwat

      Hello Mihir,

      Thank you for your inquiry. I can definitely assist you with the process of properly completing a LMIA to increase your chances of success and approval. But in order for me to do so, I must first learn some more details about you as the applicant, your employer, and the position that is being made available to you. We have helped hundreds of clients and their Canadian Employers obtain a positive LMIA over the years. Kindly complete this form for me Mihir, http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ as it will give me the information I need to advise you accurately. Once it has been reviewed, you will be contacted. MF

  • Mira Freiwat

    Hello Aditya,

    Thank you for your post. It seems that you are really unsure of which route is the best for you to take or even which is available to you considering the situation with your employer and LMIA. We can definitely help to guide you in the right direction and advise you on what options you have. Kindly complete this form for me http://www.visaplace.com/immigration-assessment/ so that I may learn more details about you and your situation and you will be contacted once it has been reviewed. MF

  • Aditya

    Hi,

    I am Aditya Shyam Vyas, currently residing in New Delhi, working for an Advertising Agency at Ovilvy & Mather India Pvt. Ltd.

    I had an urgent query to make with regards to my Canadian Post Graduate Work Permit (PGWP) that I hold, which is about to expire on 28th Aug 2015, earned post my MBA from Carleton University, Ottawa,Canada.

    As I now decide to leave my job at Ogilvy India, head back to Canada and seek a job in Advertising in Canada, I am facing a terrible situation. I recently learnt from the http://www.cic.gc.ca website that I must apply, for my extension, atleast 30 days before my work permit expires.

    However, I also learnt that I can apply for an extension within 90 days of the expiry of my permit. The same’s link is mentioned below:
    http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/helpcentre/answer.asp?q=192&t=17

    Tough luck that I thought, unaware of LMIA, I could apply for extension even a week before my PGWP’s expiry.

    So I’m now stuck. I know if I apply for a visa then I might get it (basis my work permit). But it would be of no use, if I cannot get a job that would support the extension of my work permit in Canada.

    So here’s my question:

    1. Can I get my work permit extended during the month of August, “once I reach Canada & find a job”. Althought only a week or two would be left for my PGWP’s expiry?

    2. If yes, then would there be any issues that might be problematic for my employer and might lead my employer to not supporting my work permit extension? Since I am a PGWP holder, my application should be exempted from the LMIA. Would that also hold true for the extension of the same?

    Request you to please revert at the earliest. Looking forward to hearing from you and hopefully taking things forward.


    Great thanks
    Aditya.

The content and comments of this blog are not legal advise and and may not be accurate or complete. If you require legal advice, contact a licensed legal practitioner directly. If you post on this blog, you assume full responsibility for disclosing your identity to the public and VisaPlace nor its affiliates are not responsible for protecting your privacy nor your identity concerning your participation in our blog and you assume any risks in participating.

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