Do you need a work permit to work in Canada?


Generally, an individual must have a Canadian employer with a positive HRSDC opinion before applying for a work permit.

In essence, this step confirms that it is difficult or impossible to find a Canadian to fill the position for the employer.

However, there are many individuals who are not required to apply for a work permit in this fashion. Here is a list of such individuals, but as always, you should seek legal advice to ensure you fit within these categories and to determine how long you can work in Canada under these categories:

    • Volunteers


  • Buyers



  • Trainees or Trainers



  • Sellers



  • Military Personnel



  • Government Exchanges



  • Full-Time University or College Students (work on campus)



  • Performing Artists



  • Athletes and Coaches



  • News Reporters and Crews



  • Public Speakers



  • Convention Organizers and Support Staff



  • Clergy



  • Judges or Referees



  • Academic Examiners



  • Expert Witnesses



  • Medical Students (at a medical institution with proper permissions)



  • Aviation Personnel and Crew



  • Emergency Service Providers



  • NAFTA Business and Professionals



  • Certain Individuals Subject to the Canada Chile Free Trade Agreement



  • Certain Individuals Subject to GATS


If you can fit within one of the above categories, you will be able to work in Canada without an HRSDC confirmation.

About the author

Gianpaolo Panusa Gianpaolo Panusa is a Canadian immigration lawyer, writer, and founder of the PanCanadian Immigration Law Group based in Vancouver, Canada. Google+ Profile