How to Get a Work Permit as Temporary Foreign Worker in Canada

For many Filipinos, working in Canada is a dream come true as there are tales of good life, better pay, and fun lifestyles in the country. Of course, not everyone gets to enjoy this dream, even if they are already in Canada but many actually do.

But going to Canada is difficult, as many Filipinos can attest. This is especially true if you aim to be a permanent resident right away. That is why there are many who plan on first becoming a temporary foreign worker then applying for permanent residence in Canada under the country’s programs.

You need to obtain a work permit from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) or a Canadian visa office.

To get the work permit, first you need to have a job offer from a Canadian employer. This is tricky because the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) needs to decide whether the said employer can hire a foreign worker for a particular job the company needs.

For this, the employer should apply first for Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Once the ESDC approves, the Canadian employer should send the LMIA results plus the job offer to the prospective employee.

With these documents in hand, plus other documents that would prove the job applicant’s qualifications, he/she must apply for a work permit at a Canadian visa office.

Once the worker gets the visa, the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will issue the Canada Temporary Work Permit. For many, this already means they are all set to work but arrangements might still need to be done for workers to obtain the Temporary Residence Visa (TRV).

While it seems fast and easy on paper, the road to obtaining the temporary work permit can be long and difficult. Many wait for months, some even years to get the permit!

Sources and photo credits:, Ask Immigration