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Post-graduate Work Permits

A student who completes their studies from an Institution which falls in the list of Designated Learning Institutions (DIL) is eligible for an Open Work Permit.

An Open Work Permit does not mean that the student must work in the field where they received their education. Rather, an Open Work Permit is not employer-specific, and the graduated student may work anywhere in Canada, in any industry, and with any employer. As an Open Work Permit is not specific to any employer or industry, a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is not required.

With an Open Work Permit, you can work full-time, part-time or self-employed. However, an Open Work Permit is available for a specific period of time between 8 months and 3 years. The length of the Open Work Permit depends upon the length of the study program the student has undertaken.

Not all study programs get you an Open Work Permit

In Canada, an Open Work Permit allows foreign nationals to work for any employer without a job offer or a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). One common route to obtaining an Open Work Permit is through the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) program, which enables international students to gain Canadian work experience after completing their studies.

However, not all academic programs qualify for an Open Work Permit through the PGWP program. To be eligible, the study program must meet specific criteria set by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). Some key requirements include:

  • Duration of the program: The study program must be at least eight months long to qualify for a PGWP. Shorter programs are not eligible.
  • Designated Learning Institution (DLI): The academic institution where the student completed their studies must be a DLI, recognized by the Canadian government as authorized to host international students.
  • Degree, diploma, or certificate: The program must lead to a degree, diploma, or certification recognized by the Canadian educational system.
  • Full-time enrollment: Students must be enrolled full-time throughout their study program, with some exceptions allowed for the final semester.
  • Continuity of studies: The study program must be completed within the timeframes specified by the educational institution, and students must maintain good academic standing.

If an international student’s academic program does not meet these criteria, they may not be eligible for an Open Work Permit through the Post-Graduation Work Permit program. Students need to research their chosen study program and institution to ensure they will qualify for a PGWP upon completion, should they wish to gain Canadian work experience after their studies.

Professional legal assistance every step of the way

Edmonton Law Office and its experienced Canadian Immigration Lawyers can provide invaluable assistance to international students seeking to work in Canada after successfully completing their program of study. We’ll help you determine your eligibility, advise you of what documentation must be gathered and prepared, assist you in navigating the various stages of the process, and professionally present your case. With the help of our immigration lawyers, you can significantly increase your chances of a successful outcome and the ability to work in Canada after completing your studies.

Contact us online today for a free initial consultation or by phone at (780) 784-6666.

photo of a young Asian woman recently completed her studies seeking a work permit in Canada
Are you struggling to get a post-graduate work permit for an employer in Canada? Let Edmonton Law Office and their skilled team of Immigration lawyers help you overcome this challenge.

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