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Open Work Permit Canada for Nigerians

Canada has a growing economy that allows immigrants to explore different career Opportunities. Nigerian citizens who wish to work in Canada can be granted an open work permit provided the employee and employer meet the eligibility requirements.

For further information on how to apply for an open work permit, contact The Immigration Advice Service (IAS) at +23413438882 and +44 (0) 331630092, or contact us online. Our immigration lawyers are ever ready to help you with the application process.

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Do You Want to Work in Canada for a Range of Employers?

This type of work permit might suit you if you want to work for different employers.

At IAS, we have assisted numerous Nigerians with an open work permit. We can help you achieve your dream of working in Canada.

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What Is an Open Work Permit in Canada?

A work permit that allows its holder to work for several employers in Canada is known as an open work permit. This work permit suits Nigerians who want to work in Canada without a specific employer.

The open work permit is of two kinds: the unrestricted open work permit and the restricted open work permit. Whichever type of open permit you choose, you do not need to show evidence that you have been employed.

Although, the kind of job you take and where you would work can be restricted if you choose an open restricted permit. You must pass a medical examination for an unrestricted open work permit. Those restrictions will be spelt out on your permit.

Nigerians residing at home and abroad are eligible for an open work permit. You can be issued an open work permit if your category falls under the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exemptions. This visa can be valid for less than one year or more, depending on the situation.

Benefits of a Canada Open Work Permit

One distinct benefit of an open work permit is that It will allow you to change jobs if you aren’t doing well, giving room for skill development and networking. You do not need to apply for a new work permit.

Also, your adult dependents will effortlessly get an open work permit. In addition, Your Canadian work experience will make you eligible for permanent residency in Canada.

Your employer doesn’t need an LMIA from Employment and Social Development Canada. Your employer doesn’t need to submit an offer of employment through the employer portal but must comply with the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) regulations.

You are at liberty to work for any Canadian employer of your choice and at any location in Canada as long as they meet the criteria.

Get in touch with our experts for guidance on Canadian visa applications from Nigeria.

Eligibility Requirements of an Open Work Permit

If you are a Nigerian planning to apply for an open work permit, you must be sure you meet the eligibility requirements. You are eligible if:

  • You have studied in Canada previously and want to submit a work permit application after graduation
  • You are studying in Canada but cannot meet the financial demands
  • You previously applied for permanent residency in Canada
  • Your benefactor is a permanent resident of Canada
  • Your spouse or legal partner is an international student or skilled worker on the Atlantic immigration pilot program
  • You are a young worker taking part in unique initiatives
  • You possess a temporary residency permit
  • You are seeking refuge, a protected person, a refugee, or a member of their family

LMIA Exempt Work Permits

LMIA- exemption means that a Canadian employer does not need an LMIA when hiring a temporary foreign worker. The International Mobility Programme (IMP) can be called an LMIA exemption, which allows employers to hire foreign workers and is operated by the government of Canada.

Nigerians are eligible for an LMIA-exemption work permit. The International Mobility Programme, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), and IRCC work together to maintain an inventory of LMIA exemptions.

A Canadian employer can be eligible to employ a foreign worker under the LMIA-exemption or IMP if they send a formal offer of employment to IMP via the employer Porter and also pay the employer’s compliance fee.

On the other hand, your Canadian employer will also verify if you are exempt from the LMIA. When your prospective employer has done what is necessary, you must apply for a work permit.

Your work visa should be under a global pact, a provincial-federal agreement and the category of “Canadian interests” to be eligible for an LMIA exemption.

If your employer can show evidence that you will positively impact Canadian society, culture, and economy, they will qualify you as a “significant benefit.” Examples could be independent contractors such as engineers, technicians, performing and creative artists.

Other LMIA-exempt work includes:

  • Professional coaches and players who work for Canadian teams
  • Academics appointed by the Minister, such as researchers, visiting professors, and guest lecturers (supported by an approved federal programme)
  • Medical residents and recipients of academic honours from Canadian universities
  • Philanthropic and spiritual endeavours (excluding volunteer activities)

Note: Nigerians who want a job in Canada should note that they need a work permit, whether or not it is LMIA-exempt.

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Work Permit: How to Apply

An official document known as a work permit allows Nigerians and other nationals to work temporarily in Canada. It is also known as Canada Work Visa, and You require this permit to work in Canada as a Nigerian.

Employer-specific work permits and Open work permits are types of work permits. The following is a step-by-step guide to applying for a work permit.

Step 1: Application Form

You can complete and submit the form at the visa application centre in Lagos or Abuja or submit it directly to the IRCC website. You must create an account on the site before applying.

It is crucial to have an instruction guide to avoid errors. A camera or scanner and an ATM card are also required. Fill out the application form with your original document and sign a consent form. After filling out the form, your visa fees must be paid.

Step 2: Biometrics Appointment

Your fingerprint and photo must be taken at a visa application centre in Nigeria. A biometric fee must be paid before getting the consent letter discussed in step one. After obtaining the consent letter, You must book a biometric appointment at the visa application in Nigeria before going there.

VFS Global is in charge of visa applications from Nigeria. You are to book an appointment via their website.

Step 3: Visa Appointment Interview

Attend your visa appointment in person. You must submit your completed application form, and your biometrics will be collected. You will be required to pay the VFS global service fee.

A receipt will be given to you. Your unique tracking number, which will let you monitor the status of your application, will be included in the receipt.

Step 4: Collect Your Decision Envelope

You will be informed when a decision has been made on your application. You can collect your decision envelope, send someone to pick it up or use a courier service. A courier service will cost an additional service fee.

Documents to Submit When Applying for a Work Permit

  • A valid passport, both current and previous
  • Two passport photographs
  • Your curriculum vitae
  • Original police clearance certificate
  • Proof of employment from your current employer
  • Proof of a courier service payment for your return passport
  • Evidence that you are qualified for the job you wish to apply for. For example, there is an interim licence for medical doctors and nurses

Processing Time for a Work Visa From Nigeria

The processing time for a work visa from Nigeria takes 12 weeks. The processing time starts when IRCC receives your application and sends your visa decision.

The processing time for a work visa depends on the following factors:

  • If you are required to take a medical exam, the processing time for a work permit visa can be longer and can take three months or more
  • The volume of visa applications and type of work permit you apply for
  • Incomplete and incorrect application
  • Inability to meet the eligibility requirement

For information on Canadian visa application processes, speak with us today.

How Can I Restore My Status as a Worker in Canada?

Within ninety days following your work permit’s expiration, you may request to have it renewed to restore your status as a worker. You can remain in Canada until you receive further instructions. Although, you will be able to return to work until your work permit has been reinstated. It is essential to note that The approval of your application is not guaranteed.

The processing time for a work permit visa extension is 106 days. The extension can be applied online or on paper. If you submit online, you will be given a letter as proof that you can keep working in Canada while your visa extension is being processed. This letter is valid for 180 days.

You will not be given this letter if you apply on paper. It is better to apply before the expiration of your visa as that would be proof that you can show your employer to enable you to continue work.

If your application is granted, you will get an extension of your current permit with new conditions, such as the kind of work you can do, the location, and your employer. A valid passport is required to restore your status in Canada. You will also prove why you need an extension of your visa.

Open Work Permit Holder Fee

Nigerians applying for an open work permit are to pay a work permit fee of CAD 155 and an open permit holder fee of CAD 100. You must also pay a biometric fee of CAD 85 per person.

The biometric fee includes payment for passport photographs and fingerprints. If you travel with a family member, the biometric fee will be less. You will be able to pay a family biometric fee of CAD 170.

Visa fees are paid online or at the VFS global centre in Lagos or Abuja. If you are paying online, you need a credit or debit card. Any additional service will cost a service fee to be paid to the VFS global account in Naira.

You can check the VFS website for any extra services and their fees. You can also apply for a refund. However, once IRCC starts processing your application, your visa fees will not be returned.

Exemption Codes Fee for Applicants

Exemption codes are policies and procedures the IRCC staff uses to guide the application process. Applicants who are eligible fall under any of the exemption codes.

Exception code C31 is for applicants who want to do research in canada. Code C32 is for open work permit applicants, while code C33 is for study permit applicants. You can read more about it on the IRCC website.

Nigerians applying for a work permit who fall under exemption codes C31, C32 and C33 are free from paying the work permit processing fee and the open work permit fee.

How Can IAS Help?

Nigerian applicants may find the procedure of applying for a Canadian open work visa to be difficult and time-consuming. Small mistakes can occur, sometimes resulting in an application rejection. It is advisable to get the help of an experienced immigration lawyer to overcome these difficulties.

Our immigration lawyers at IAS are well-versed in handling open work visas and any other Visa application. We have a wealth of experience in Canadian immigration law. We have helped a lot of Nigerians achieve their dream of travelling to Canada. You’ll have access to our knowledge and direction for the application process by contacting us.

Our experienced lawyers will oversee the case and offer customised support based on your unique situation to guarantee a smooth application process. We will walk you through each stage, check your application carefully and make a compelling case for you. Contact our immigration lawyers at +23413438882 and +44 (0) 3316300929, or contact us online.

We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at our Lagos office, all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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Frequently Asked Questions

You have the option to “withdraw” the incorrect application and start a new one by choosing “new” to start a new one if an error occurs during the application process.

If your work permit application was refused, you can reapply, but ensure that all necessary information is included this time. Although, your decision letter will specify if you are not eligible to reapply. Our IAS lawyers can help you in situations like this. Contact IAS at +23413438882 and +44 (0) 3316300929.

The result of the immigration medical exam will determine if your application is accepted. If your health issue jeopardises Canada’s public health or you are mentally challenged and if you will need frequent health services, your application may not be accepted.

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