Study Overseas Process

Sign up for free

expert consultation

Down Arrow

I accept the Terms & Conditions

Personalized Services
Don't know what to do?

Get Free Counseling

Posted on November 30 2022

Do you know the 4 options for a Canada work visa without an LMIA?

By  Editor
Updated September 20 2023

Highlights of how to migrate on a Canada work visa without LMIA

  • There are four streams of the Canada work visa that foreign nationals can use to migrate to Canada.
  • LMIA is generally required for employers in Canada to affirm that they have worker shortages that can’t be filled with native people.
  • Canada allows certain skilled foreign workers to get employed in the country without LMIA for social, economic, and cultural reasons.

If you have an understanding of a Canada work visa, you will have come across the acronym LMIA, which stands for Labor Market Impact Assessment. Generally, to apply for a Canada work visa for the purpose of recruiting a new foreign worker, the employer in Canada has to apply for an LMIA. While applicants for a work visa for Canada require to procure LMIA approval generally, there are streams that allow them to bypass this requirement.

*Know your eligibility to immigrate to Canada through Y-Axis Canada Immigration Points Calculator.

What’s an LMIA (Labor Market Impact Assessment)?

Before we look at the Canada work visa let’s understand what LMIA is. An LMIA document may be required by a Canadian employer in order to hire a worker who’s a foreign national.

If an employer gets a positive LMIA (confirmation letter), it will prove the point that there’s a requirement for a foreign worker to fill an open job vacancy. Another point that is proven is that the employer could find no worker among Canada PRs or Canadian citizens available and qualified to do the job.

In case an employer in Canada requires an LMIA, that employer must apply for one. After the employer procures the LMIA, the foreign worker can go ahead with applying for a Canada work permit.

Also read...

How employers advertise to hire foreigners to work in Canada under LMIA

If a foreign worker needs to apply for a work permit the following documents must be submitted:

  • a job contract
  • a letter offering a job
  • the LMIA number
  • a copy of the LMIA

Canada work visa without LMIA

Foreign nationals can apply for a Canada work visa without the requirement of an LMIA. Such visas that are LMIA-exempt are issued for certain foreign nationals with the aim of achieving economic, social, and cultural benefits.

If you are a foreign national wanting to work in Canada, you can apply for a work visa through the Canadian Interests category of IMP (International Mobility Program). This program has four streams. Here’s more about them.

Stream 1: Competitiveness and public policy

Work visa is issued under this stream in the following instances:

  • When a foreigner will do work that requires them to have limited access to the Canadian labor market
  • The work is essential from a public policy perspective
  • The purpose of the work is to make an attempt to build and maintain the competence of Canada’s economy and/or academic institutions

PGWP (Post Graduate Work Permit) comes under this Stream which is meant for international students who have graduated from a Canadian institution. The purpose is to enable them to live and work in Canada legally after their studies. The common term of validity of PGWP, which is an open work permit, is three years.

Also read...

Canada open work permit now made available to certain PGWP holders

Included in this Stream is a program that provides open work permits to the common law partners and spouses of the following:

  • Full-time international students
  • Foreign nationals who migrate as skilled workers to Canada

Stream 2: Significant benefit

Under this stream, an LMIA-exempt Canada work visa is granted to those foreign nationals who are capable of providing economic, cultural, and social benefits to Canada at a significant level. The Canadian Significant Benefit Work Permit (SBWP) is the permit that comes under this Stream. To learn more about SBWP, read No LMIA required for Canadian Significant Benefit Work Permit.

Stream 3: Reciprocal employment

Under this stream, LMIA is exempted for foreign workers who get the opportunity to work in Canada as a result of opportunities that are similar and are provided to Canadian nationals who work abroad.

The foreign nationals who come to work on a permit under this stream will do jobs of such nature that will help Canada create or maintain relationships with other world countries. With this, permanent residents or citizens of Canada will get the opportunity to work in other countries in the world.

In the scope of this Stream are work opportunities arising as a result of the following:

International agreements

Reciprocal employment by way of international agreements is evident through CUSMA (Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement).

International Exchange Programs

IEC (International Experience Canada) is an international exchange program that’s meant to give Canadians the opportunity to make progress in their life and career through overseas experience. Here, foreign nationals who apply via the IMP from countries that keep up working relationships with Canada get an exemption from the need for an LMIA.

Stream 4: Charitable and religious workers

Under this Stream, Canada gives work permit applicants who want to work on projects that are by nature charitable or religious. They have the opportunity to work in Canada without an LMIA with their work visas.

If you are willing to migrate to Canada, talk to Y-Axis, the leading immigration and career consultant in the UAE.

Global citizens are the future. We help make it possible through our immigration services.

If you find this blog engaging, you may also like:

Canada immigration to exceed expectations; 471,000 newcomers in 2022


canada work visa

Migrate to Canada


Y-Axis Services

Personalized Services

Get it on your mobile

Personalized Services

Get News alerts

Personalized Services

Contact Y-Axis

Latest Article

Popular Post

Trending Article


Posted On June 14 2024

Canada issued more than 60,000 LMIAs in 2023