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Q. Can I apply for a work permit when I enter Canada?

Question submitted by Luis M.

Although it is best to apply for a work permit prior to arriving in Canada, it is possible to apply at the point of entry, if you are eligible.

Am I eligible for a port of entry application?

To apply at a port of entry (POE), you must meet all of the following:

  • be eligible for an electronic travel authorization or to travel without a visitor visa

  • be eligible to enter Canada while COVID-19 travel restrictions are in place

  • meet other requirements depending on the type of work permit you’re applying for such as:

Employer-specific work permit applicants - Your employer must have completed

all of the required steps for the employer-specific work permit.

Open work permit applicants - You must be eligible to apply for an open work


Before you travel to Canada

All travellers entering Canada must follow testing and quarantine requirements. Under certain conditions, you may be exempt from some of these requirements. You may also need to take a medical exam before you come to Canada.

What do I do when I arrive at the port of entry?

Tell the officer that you want a work permit. The officer will check:

  • your passport or other travel document

  • that you meet the eligibility requirements

  • that your medical certificate is valid if you need one

If you’re applying for an employer-specific work permit:

If you need a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) for your job, you need to bring additional items, such as your job offer, a copy of the LMIA, etc.

If you don’t need an LMIA for your job, you need to bring additional items like your job offer, the offer number from your employer, etc.

Ultimately, your port of entry application is reliant on the satisfaction of the officer you are dealing with. They must feel you have met the requirements of the application to the extent that they are willing to approve you right there. Alternatively, they have the option to defer to a visa officer for further analysis of your application. This can happen if the officer doesn't feel comfortable approving your application on the spot, but is willing to allow you the regular process instead of refusing you.

Immigration Station Canada will work with you and guide you through the best process to achieve your goals, wherever they lead!


About Us

Immigration Station Canada is a dedicated, professional Canadian Immigration firm practicing out of Northumberland County, just east of Toronto, Canada. We serve clients from Kingston, Belleville, Brighton, Cobourg, Oshawa, the GTA, Guelph, Milton, Stratford and St. Catharines and around the world. Our Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant, Anne C. McCaughey (Annie) is an experienced immigration services provider and a fifth-generation Canadian who values the immigration process and the unique individuals who immigrate to Canada to become part of the fabric of this wonderful country. If you would like to submit a question to Ask Annie, use the contact form.

How Can We Help? We do work permits, study permits, visitor visas, Express Entry, spousal sponsorship, family class sponsorship, and Canadian citizenship with expertise in Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) applications and Global Talent Stream applications. Please contact us if you would like assistance with your immigration application or to book an appointment.

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