On April 1, 2011 Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) introduced a four-year cumulative duration limit on the length of time certain Temporary Foreign Workers could work in Canada. Temporary Foreign Workers (TFWs) affected in Canada as of April 1, 2011 were given four years under the regulation, regardless of the length of time they had been in Canada before April 1, 2011. Consequently, the first day that any temporary foreign worker may reach their cumulative limit is April 1, 2015.

Who are affected?

The four-year cumulative cap applies to all Temporary Foreign Workers who has work permits under skill level NOC B, C and D with a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or formally a Labour Market Opinion (LMO).

Who are exempt from the four-year regulation?

There are foreign workers who are exempted from the four-year cumulative limit, which includes:

  • TFWs who are working in Managerial (NOC 0) or professional (NOC A) occupations;
  • TFWs who are exempted from obtaining an LMIA, including spouses and common-law partners of NOC 0 or NOC A skilled professionals, religious workers and refugee claimants;
  • TFWs who are working in Canada under NAFTA or other international agreements;
  • Those who are exempted from obtaining an LMIA, including spouses and common-law partners of NOC 0 or NOC A skilled professionals, religious workers and refugee claimants;
  • Those who have applied for Permanent Residence and have received confirmation that their application has been accepted

If affected, what should I do?

Temporary Foreign Workers who are not exempt from the four-year regulation and who have been working in Canada for a cumulative total of four years are not eligible to work in Canada until an additional four years has passed. Individuals affected may remain in Canada, if they have legal status as a visitor or student, but they may not work for four years.

Temporary Foreign Workers currently in Canada working should consider applying for Permanent Residence through the Express Entry Program or the Provincial Nominee Program.

If you would like more information about the cumulative four-year cap on Temporary Foreign Workers or would like assistance in preparing an application for Permanent Residence contact us to begin your application at 647-556-1781.

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