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Work Permit Renewal


Work Permit Renewal

When to Apply for Work Permit Renewal

Ideally, you should start your work permit renewal process at least 30 days before your current permit expires. This will give you enough time to gather necessary documents and complete the application process. Remember that applying late may result in losing your legal status in Canada and jeopardize your employment.


Assessing Your Eligibility for Renewal

Before starting the renewal process, ensure you meet the following criteria:

  • You have a valid job offer from a Canadian employer.

  • You have a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or are exempt from the LMIA requirement.

  • You meet any other requirements specific to your work permit category.

Gathering Required Documents

Gather the following documents for a smooth work permit renewal process:

  1. Updated passport and other identification documents.

  2. Current work permit.

  3. Valid job offer and employment contract.

  4. Positive LMIA or LMIA-exemption proof.

  5. Proof of financial support.

  6. Medical examination results (if applicable).

  7. Additional documents for specific situations, such as change of employer or occupation.

Completing the Application Form

Choose the correct application form based on your work permit type. Fill out the form accurately, providing all the required information. Ensure that you don't leave any sections blank and double-check for errors before submitting. Common mistakes include incorrect or inconsistent personal information, which can delay or even result in rejection of your application.

The application form required for work permit renewal in Canada depends on your work permit type and whether you are applying from within Canada, outside Canada, or at a port of entry.


When applying for a work permit renewal from within Canada, you should use the following forms:

  1. IMM 5710: Application to Change Conditions, Extend my Stay or Remain in Canada as a Worker - This form is used for renewing your work permit, changing your work permit conditions, or extending your stay in Canada. You can find the form and instructions on the Government of Canada's website at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/application-forms-guides/application-change-conditions-extend-stay-worker.html

  2. IMM 5409: Statutory Declaration of Common-Law Union (if applicable) - This form may be required if you are in a common-law relationship and wish to include your partner in your application. The form can be found at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/application-forms-guides/guide-5553-applying-change-conditions-extend-your-stay-canada-worker.html

  3. IMM 5476: Use of a Representative (if applicable) - If you are using a representative to help you with your work permit renewal application, you must complete and include this form. The form can be found at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/application-forms-guides/guide-5553-applying-change-conditions-extend-your-stay-canada-worker.html

  4. IMM 5488: Document Checklist - Workers - This form is a helpful checklist to ensure you include all the necessary documents with your application. You can find the checklist at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/application-forms-guides/guide-5553-applying-change-conditions-extend-your-stay-canada-worker.html

When applying for a work permit renewal from outside Canada or at a port of entry, you should use the following form:

  1. IMM 1295: Application for Work Permit Made Outside of Canada - This form is used for applicants who are applying for a work permit renewal from outside Canada. You can find the form and instructions on the Government of Canada's website at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/application-forms-guides/application-work-permit-outside-canada.html

Please note that additional forms and documents may be required depending on your specific situation, such as proof of a valid job offer, a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or LMIA-exemption, and other supporting documentation. Always refer to the Government of Canada's website and the relevant application guide for the most up-to-date information and requirements for your work permit renewal application.


Paying the Processing Fee

Work permit renewal fees vary depending on your permit type. Typically, there's a fee for the work permit itself and an additional fee for the LMIA or LMIA-exemption, if applicable. Pay the fees online through the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website. Keep in mind that fees are non-refundable, even if your application is denied.


The fees for work permit renewal in Canada are as follows:

  1. Work Permit Fee (including extensions): CAD 155

  2. Open Work Permit Holder Fee: CAD 100 (applicable only if you are applying for an open work permit)

Please note that these fees are subject to change, and you should always refer to the Government of Canada's website for the most up-to-date information on fees. You can find the current fee structure at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/corporate/fees-passes/fees.html


When applying for work permit renewal, you will need to pay the appropriate fees online through the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website. Keep in mind that fees are non-refundable, even if your application is denied.


Submitting the Application

You can submit your application either online or by mail. Online applications are generally faster and more convenient, as you can track your application status and receive updates electronically. When submitting your application, ensure that you've included all the required documents to avoid delays or rejection.


Upon submission, your application will be reviewed by the IRCC. If approved, you'll receive a renewed work permit. However, if your application is refused, carefully review the reasons for refusal and consider reapplying with additional supporting documentation or seeking professional advice.


In some cases, you may be eligible for a Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) as an alternative. A TRP allows you to stay in Canada temporarily if your work permit renewal is not approved.

Work Permit Renewal Processing Time

The processing time for work permit renewal in Canada varies depending on several factors, such as the type of work permit, the applicant's country of residence, the processing office, and the overall volume of applications received by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).


As of September 2021, the average processing time for work permit extensions (renewals) submitted from within Canada was approximately 89 days for online applications and 119 days for paper applications. However, these processing times are subject to change and may vary depending on your specific circumstances.


It's essential to keep in mind that incomplete or inaccurate applications may result in longer processing times or even denial of your application. To avoid delays, ensure that your application is complete, accurate, and submitted with all the required documents.


For the most up-to-date information on work permit renewal processing times, you can visit the Government of Canada's website at: https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/application/check-processing-times.html


Please note that the information provided here is based on the knowledge cutoff date of September 2021, and processing times may have changed since then. Always refer to the Government of Canada's website for the latest information on processing times.


Can I work after my work permit expires?

No, you cannot legally work in Canada after your work permit expires. Once your work permit expires, you are no longer authorized to work in the country, and continuing to work without a valid work permit can lead to serious consequences, such as being found inadmissible, facing removal from Canada, and negatively impacting future applications for work permits, study permits, or permanent residency.


However, if you have applied for a work permit renewal before your current work permit expires, you may be eligible to continue working under "implied status" while waiting for a decision on your renewal application. Implied status means that you are allowed to remain in Canada under the same conditions as your original work permit until a decision is made on your renewal application, as long as your application was submitted before your work permit expired.


If your renewal application is denied, you will have to stop working immediately and may need to leave Canada, depending on your situation.

To avoid any interruptions in your employment, it's essential to plan ahead and submit your work permit renewal application at least 30 days before your current permit expires. This will give you enough time to gather necessary documents and complete the application process while minimizing the risk of losing your legal status in Canada.


How many times can I extend my work permit in Canada?

There is no specific limit to the number of times you can extend your work permit in Canada, as long as you continue to meet the eligibility requirements for each renewal. However, the number of extensions may be influenced by factors such as the type of work permit you hold, the job offer's duration, and the maximum work duration allowed for specific work permit categories.


For example, if you hold a closed work permit tied to a specific employer, you can extend your work permit as long as you have a valid job offer from the same employer and meet other requirements, such as having a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or being exempt from the LMIA requirement.


If you hold an open work permit, such as a post-graduation work permit or a working holiday permit, these permits usually have a maximum duration and cannot be extended beyond that duration. In such cases, you may need to apply for a new work permit, such as a closed work permit tied to a specific employer, if you wish to continue working in Canada.

It's essential to understand the specific conditions and requirements of your work permit category and plan accordingly. If you want to stay in Canada for a longer period or permanently, you may want to explore other immigration options, such as applying for permanent residency through programs like the Express Entry system or the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).


Can I apply for a second work permit in Canada?

Yes, you can apply for a second work permit in Canada, depending on your situation and eligibility. There are a few scenarios in which you may want to apply for a second work permit:

  1. Changing employers: If you hold a closed work permit tied to a specific employer and want to change jobs, you will need to apply for a new work permit with the new employer's details, along with a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or proof of LMIA exemption if required.

  2. Changing job positions or occupations: If your current work permit is restricted to a specific job position or occupation and you wish to change your role within the same company or move to a different occupation, you may need to apply for a new work permit reflecting the changes.

  3. Transitioning from an open work permit: If you hold an open work permit, such as a post-graduation work permit or a working holiday permit, and wish to continue working in Canada after the open work permit expires, you can apply for a closed work permit tied to a specific employer, provided you have a valid job offer and meet other requirements.

  4. Dual employment: In some cases, you may want to work for two different employers simultaneously. You will need to apply for a second work permit if your current work permit is tied to a specific employer and does not allow you to work for another employer.

To apply for a second work permit, you must follow the same application process as for your initial work permit, including meeting all eligibility requirements and submitting the required forms and documents. Be sure to review the specific conditions and requirements of the work permit category you are applying for and ensure you meet all necessary criteria.

What to do after 1 year work permit in Canada?

After completing one year of work in Canada on a work permit, you have several options depending on your goals and eligibility. Here are some common steps to consider:

  1. Work permit extension: If you wish to continue working in Canada and still meet the eligibility requirements, you can apply for a work permit extension. Make sure to apply at least 30 days before your current work permit expires to maintain your legal status in Canada while your application is being processed.

  2. Change of employer or job position: If you want to change your employer or job position, you may need to apply for a new work permit reflecting the new job offer and employer details. Ensure that you have a valid job offer and meet all other requirements, such as obtaining a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or LMIA exemption, if applicable.

  3. Apply for permanent residency: One year of work experience in Canada may qualify you for certain permanent residency programs, such as the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) under the Express Entry system, or specific streams under the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). Evaluate your eligibility for these programs and consider applying for permanent residency to continue living and working in Canada long-term.

  4. Study in Canada: If you decide to further your education in Canada, you can apply for a study permit. In some cases, you may be eligible to work part-time while studying. After completing your studies, you may qualify for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), allowing you to gain additional work experience in Canada.

  5. Return to your home country: If you decide not to extend your stay in Canada after your work permit expires, you must leave the country and return to your home country. Ensure that you adhere to the conditions of your work permit and leave Canada before it expires to avoid jeopardizing future applications for work permits, study permits, or permanent residency.

Always evaluate your goals, eligibility, and the specific requirements of your work permit category to determine the best course of action after completing one year of work in Canada. Planning ahead and staying informed about your options can help you make the most of your experience in Canada.

Can I switch job in Canada with work permit?

Yes, you can switch jobs in Canada with a work permit; however, the process depends on the type of work permit you hold.

  1. Closed work permit: If you have a closed work permit, which is tied to a specific employer, you will need to apply for a new work permit before changing jobs. The new work permit must be associated with the new employer, and you may need a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or proof of LMIA exemption for the new job offer. You can start working for the new employer only after your new work permit has been approved.

  2. Open work permit: If you have an open work permit, such as a post-graduation work permit or a working holiday permit, you are allowed to switch jobs without obtaining a new work permit, as open work permits are not tied to a specific employer. You can work for any employer in Canada, subject to any restrictions mentioned on your work permit, such as the type of occupation or location.


When switching jobs in Canada, it is essential to understand the specific conditions and requirements of your work permit category and ensure that you meet all necessary criteria. Always maintain your legal status in Canada and follow the proper procedures for changing jobs to avoid jeopardizing your future work permit or permanent residency applications.


Renewing your Canada work permit is a crucial process that requires careful planning and attention to detail. By understanding when to apply, assessing your eligibility, gathering necessary documents, and completing the application form accurately, you can increase your chances of a successful renewal. Stay informed and organized throughout the process to ensure you can continue working in Canada without any interruptions.


Ready to take the next step towards working in Canada? Let Immergity Immigration Consultant guide you through the work permit application process, ensuring a smooth and successful experience. Our team of dedicated professionals is here to help you navigate the complex immigration system and find the best pathway tailored to your unique situation.

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