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  • Writer's pictureImmergity Immigration Consultant

LMIA Exempt Job Offers

What is LMIA?

The Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is an integral part of Canada's employment framework. Before hiring a foreign worker, Canadian employers typically need to obtain an LMIA. This document verifies that there's a genuine need for a foreign worker in a particular role, and no Canadian worker is available for the position. However, there are certain job offers that bypass this requirement, known as LMIA-exempt job offers.

LMIA Exempt Job Offers

Key Terms



A document that validates the need for a foreign worker in a specific role.

​LMIA Exempt Job Offer

​Job offers that bypass the LMIA requirement.

Express Entry System

Canada's immigration system for skilled workers.

Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS)

​A points-based system within Express Entry.

LMIA Exempt Job Offers

Not all job offers in Canada require an LMIA. The Canadian government has identified specific scenarios where foreign nationals can receive a job offer without the need for an LMIA:

  1. Temporary Policy Extensions: Canada has extended policies allowing certain visitors to apply for work permits from within the country. Such applicants must have a valid visitor status and a job offer that's either supported by an LMIA or is LMIA-exempt.

  2. Open Work Permits: Under the International Mobility Program, Canada offers open work permits, allowing foreign nationals to work for any employer without an LMIA. However, specific conditions and exemption codes apply.

  3. International Agreements: The Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) is a prime example where U.S. citizens can work in Canada under certain categories without needing an LMIA.

  4. Intra-Company Transfers: Multinational companies can transfer certain employees to their Canadian branches without the need for an LMIA, provided specific criteria are met.

Detailed Insights into LMIA Exempt Categories:

  • Working in Canada as a Business Visitor: Business visitors are international individuals who come to Canada for international business activities without intending to enter the Canadian labour market. They can conduct business or trade activities without a work permit under certain conditions. For instance, they must have a primary place of business outside Canada, not intend to enter the Canadian labour market, and have a stay of less than six months. Business visitors might need a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) based on their specific circumstances.

  • Working in Canada as a Professional from the US: U.S. citizens can work in Canada under the CUSMA Professionals category if their profession is listed on the IRCC website. They must possess a relevant degree or certification, have a job offer from a Canadian employer, and ensure their job responsibilities align with the CUSMA list. It's essential to note that self-employment is not permitted under this category.

  • Intra-Company Transfers: This provision allows employees of multinational companies outside Canada to obtain an LMIA-exempt work permit and transfer to a Canadian location of the company. The employee must have a position at the executive level, senior managerial level, or one requiring specialized knowledge. The Canadian enterprise should have a qualifying relationship with the foreign company, such as being a parent, subsidiary, branch, or affiliate.

Implications for Work Permits and Permanent Residency

  • LMIA exemption & Work Permits: The exemption from LMIA simplifies the work permit process for immigrants. Certain jobs, due to international agreements or specific policies, don't require an LMIA, streamlining the work permit acquisition process.

  • LMIA and Permanent Residence through FSW: The Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program, part of the Express Entry system, benefits significantly from LMIA exemptions. Candidates with a provincial nomination (enhanced nomination) can gain an additional 600 points under the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS). This boost virtually guarantees an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence.

  • LMIA and Permanent Residence through PNP: The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) allows provinces to select immigrants with specific skills or attributes. Candidates with a provincial nomination can apply for permanent residence and, if part of the Express Entry system, gain an additional 600 CRS points. The LMIA exemption for certain jobs aids candidates in this pathway.

Jobs That Don't Require an LMIA

Based on the NOC 2021 table, here are some jobs that don't require an LMIA:

  • Insurance agents and brokers (NOC Code - 63100): They sell various types of insurance to individuals, businesses, and public institutions. They might be employed by individual insurance companies or work independently.

  • Automotive and heavy truck and equipment parts installers and servicers (NOC Code - 74203): These professionals install replacement automotive parts and perform routine maintenance services on automobiles, trucks, and heavy equipment.

Here are more jobs that do not require an LMIA:

  1. Entrepreneurs/Self-Employed Candidates: Entrepreneurs who wish to come to Canada temporarily to start or operate a business may be granted an LMIA exemption. They must be the sole or majority owners of the business they wish to pursue in Canada and demonstrate that their business will be of significant benefit to Canada.

  2. Intra-Company Transferees: Transferees may be granted an LMIA exemption for a temporary transfer to Canada. They must be considered executives, managers, or specialized knowledge workers and work for a foreign company with a qualifying relationship to the company in Canada.

  3. International Exchange Programs: Canada participates in several programs for international youth exchange, such as the International Experience Canada (IEC) Working Holiday Visa, Student Co-op programs, Young Professionals programs, and teacher exchange programs.

  4. Dependents Of Foreign Workers: Spouses and children of Foreign Workers holding a Canadian work permit for a skilled position may be eligible for an Open Work Permit (OWP) without needing an LMIA.

  5. French-Speaking Skilled Workers: Foreign nationals recruited through a francophone immigration promotional event and destined for a province or territory outside of Quebec, qualified under a National Occupational Classification (NOC) 0, 1, 2, or 3 may be eligible for the Mobilité Francophone program.

  6. Religious Workers: Those whose main duties are “spiritual” may work in Canada without an LMIA.

  7. Academics: This category includes researchers, guest lecturers, and visiting professors who may be exempt from the LMIA requirement.

  8. Provincial LMIA Exemptions: Workers nominated by a province for permanent residence and who have obtained a job offer in that province may be exempt from the need for an LMIA.

It's essential to note that while these jobs may be exempt from the LMIA requirement, individuals still need to obtain a work permit to work legally in Canada.

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