How to Convert Canada Vistor Visa to Work Permit in 2024

As the new policy went into effect, currently visitors can convert their Canada visitor visa to work permit in 2024. It is defintely a good opportunity for foreign nationals who plan to have a job in Canada.

Eligibility requirements for converting Canada visitor visa to work permit

According the Canadian government, foreign nationals inside Canada as visitors who receive a valid job offer are able to apply for and receive a work permit without having to leave the country. To qualify for this temporary public policy, you must meet the following requirements:

  • You must be a visitor with valid status in Canada when you apply for the work permit.
  • You must have a job offer that is supported by a labour market impact assessment (LMIA) or an LMIA-exempt offer of employment.
  • You must submit your application for an employer-specific work permit no later than February 28, 2025.
  • You must meet all other standard admissiblity criteria.

Also, there are other ways to convert your visitor visa to open work permit without LMIA. But you only can do this when:

  • Your spouse or common-law partner has a study permit and is studying a DLI at present.
  • Your spouse or common-law partner holds a work permit and is engaging in occupations specified in NOC o, A, and B.
  • Your spouse or common-law partner is waiting for PR and has “approval in principal” status.
  • You have applied for PR under Spousal Sponsorship and are waiting for the decision.

Steps to convert a visitor visa to work permit

After making clear about the requirements, now you can follow the below steps to convert your visitor visa to work permit:

Get a valid job offer

A valid job offer is an absolutely essential precondition for your work permit applicatoin. So first of all, you should find a job in Canada and obtain a job offer from a Canadian employer. Make sure you have a written job offer that includes necessary details like your salary and duration of the employment.

Obtain an LMIA approved offer letter (if required)

The LMIA refers to a document issued by the Canadian government to employers or companies in Canada that allows them to hire a foreign worker. For most foreign applicants, they must apply for a job in such companies and get a offer letter to convert their visitor visa to work permit.

Apply for your work permit online

Now that you have received a job offer, you can finish your work permit application online as follows:

  • Gather all the required documents

To submit your application, you should first collect all the required documents, including the job offer letter, LMIA (if applicable),  proof of your current visitor visa status in Canada, a valid credit or debit card, and any other supporting documents asked for. Then you need to create electronic copies of your documents through scanner or camera.

  • Read the introduction guide and complete the application form

Before you fill out your application form, you should read the introduction guide as it provides an explanation of how to complete the form. Remember to keep your form well when it is finished because it is required in the application.

  • Sign in or create your IRCC secure account

You cannot make an application without an IRCC secure account on the website of the Canadian government. IRCC is the abbreviation for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. If you do not have such an account, you must visit the website and create one. With this account, you can:

✓ pay your application fees

✓ submit your application form and documents

✓ check your application status

Start your application

Once you sign in your account, you should follow the steps as below to start your application:

1.  Click on “Start your application” on the account welcome page.

2.  Select the “Apply to come to Canada” option.

3.  Scroll down to the “I do not have a personal reference code” section on the next page.

4.  Press the “Visitor visa, study and/ or work permit” button to start submitting your work permit application in accordance with the guidance of the website.

5.  Ensure you have paid the processing fees when submitting your application.

Wait for the processing of your application

The processing time for work permit applications varies in the type of job and the number of applications. It is recommended to keep track of your application status online so that you can respond to any news  from IRCC in time. Note that during the processing of your application, you cannot work in Canada unless you have obtained a temporary work permit. In addition, you should maintain your legal status in the country when you wait for your application approval. You can apply for an extension of your visitor status to ensure you can stay in the country legally if necessary.

Receive your work permit

If your work permit application wins approval, you will receive a work permit document that shows the details of your employment like the name of your employer, your job title, and your employment duration. Once you get the document, you can have a legal identity to work in Canada.

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