How To Work In Canada Without LMIA From Your Employer

If you are a foreign student who has completed your education in Canada, you can get a job offer and work in Canada without LMIA from your employer.

However, this is not always easy since many barriers must be overcome before applying for an LMIA-exempt work permit (Temporary Foreign Worker).

Suppose you have already received an offer from an employer but still have not received approval from Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC).

In that case, this article will provide information about how to obtain an LMIA exemption for working in Canada as well as some tips on how best to prepare yourself for these exams so that they do not throw off your chances of getting hired right away by employers here at home or abroad.

What Is LMIA?

The Labour Market Impact Assessment, also known as LMIA, assesses the impact of an international worker on the Canadian labor market. It is required for all employers who wish to hire a foreign worker and does not apply if you are working in Canada as a student or visitor.

The purpose of an LMIA is to ensure that your employer will not negatively affect local workers during your employment period. To do this, they must show that they have tried their best to find Canadians before bringing in new employees from abroad.

What Does It Mean To Work In Canada Without LMIA From Your Employer

An international worker who wants to work in Canada must obtain a work permit. A work permit is required for any foreign national who wants to work in Canada, regardless of the type of job they are hired for or the length of their employment.

If an employer has offered you a job offer in Canada, you can apply for a temporary resident visa (TRV). This will allow your employer’s company to sponsor your entry into Canada so that they can hire and pay benefits on behalf of their employee.

What Are The Steps To Work In Canada Without LMIA From Your Employer

1. Apply For A Work Permit

If you’re in Canada and want to work as a temporary foreign worker, there are several things that you need to do. You can apply for a work permit through the Employer’s Certificate or the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) process.

2. Get A Job Offer

If you have a job from a Canadian employer in the same occupation and skill level as your LMIA-exempt job, then it’s most likely that your employer will be able to sponsor you. If not, they may be able to sponsor you if they have another position open at an acceptable rate.

Suppose an employer cannot sponsor an LMIA worker (e.g., because of their previous employment). In that case, they can hire someone else who has been working in Canada under another program, such as the Express Entry Stream (EES).

3. Apply for an LMIA-Exempt Work Permit

If you are already authorized to work in Canada, you can apply for an LMIA-exempt work permit, which means that your employer must provide evidence of your authorization.

To apply for an LMIA (temporary foreign worker) exempt work permit, you must have a valid employment contract or offer of employment with a Canadian employer.

Your job offer must be from a Canadian employer who sponsors you for permanent residency based on the following criteria: 

A) The salary offered by this employer;

 B) The duration of employment (if it’s less than six months); 

C) Whether there are any other issues relating to admissions into Canada at the time of application, such as criminal convictions or bankruptcies, which could affect eligibility under certain categories; 

D) Any other factors related specifically towards becoming eligible under one category over another (i.e., if someone has been living abroad for more than five years without working, they might not qualify).

Read Also: What Is The Average Salary In Canada In 2022?

4. Prepare For The Medical Exam

Make sure your health is up to par. The Canadian medical exam is no joke, and you will have to show evidence of having good health before they will let you get started on your new job. To do this, check the requirements for the medical exam on the Immigration website (

Check if you need a chest x-ray or blood test before taking the test. If one is required, ensure it’s done within 60 days before taking their actual exam date!

5. Get A Medical Exam

A medical exam is a step to obtaining your LMIA and working in Canada. This will determine whether you’re eligible to work in Canada, and you must do this before applying for a job here or even planning on moving here.

What Are The Requirements To Work In Canada Without LMIA From Your Employer?

There are a few requirements that you need to meet before you can work in Canada without LMIA from your employer.

One must be a citizen of a country that has a visa-free travel arrangement with Canada. This means that if you’re from one of such countries listed, then your passport will suffice. 

Who Is Eligible To Work In Canada Without LMIA From Your Employer?

To secure a job in Canada as a foreign worker, you must have a valid LMIA from your current or previous employer.

  • Who is eligible to make an application for a work permit without an LMIA from their employer:
  • You are below 18 years old and not married;
  • Any Canadian employer employed you while they were on strike or lockout;
  • You were working under a contract not exceeding three years when either party terminated it;
  • You worked less than six months at one job before moving to another job (excluding seasonal workers);
  • Who is not eligible to apply for a work permit without an LMIA from their employers? 

What Are The Challenges To Work In Canada Without LMIA From Your Employer?

If you want to work in Canada without LMIA from your employer, there are a few things that you need to understand.

First of all, it is vital to know that the International Mobility Program (IMP) is only available if a Canadian employer has made an employment offer and has been accepted by you.

The employer must also be able to prove that there are no Canadian citizens or permanent residents available for the position being offered.

If this sounds complicated, don’t worry because we have created a step-by-step guide below, showing how easy it can be.

How Can One Get a Job Offer Without LMIA?

If you’re in Canada and want to work without LMIA, there are several steps that you can take.

Step 1: Apply for an LMIA-exempt work permit. You need this type of work permit if your employer already has an offer from a Canadian employer and wants you to come over as soon as possible.

Step 2: Get a job offer from a Canadian employer who wants to hire you without having their LMIA (if needed).

This will allow them not only to save money but also to make sure that their immigration status is not affected by hiring someone else who does not have one yet.

If they apply for one, it will cost them more than just hiring someone else right away would have done anyway, so why bother when there’s no need?

Which Province Does Not Require LMIA in Canada?

  • Ontario
  • Quebec
  • British Columbia
  • Alberta
  • Saskatchewan
  • Manitoba 
  • Nova Scotia 
  • New Brunswick does not require LMIA for temporary foreign workers.

The Alberta and Saskatchewan governments have made changes to their Temporary Foreign Worker Programs that have impacted the need for LMIA applications. 

The International Mobility Program (IMP)

The International Mobility Program (IMP) is a program for employers who need to hire foreign workers for short periods of time. IMP is not a permanent job offer, but it can be used by employers who want to hire someone temporarily or on an as-needed basis.

IMP has no age limit or language requirement, so you could be eligible if you’re older than 35 and speak English fluently or French fluently in Quebec. You may also have experience working in Canada because your employer asked them to fill out an LMIA form when they hired you, but this doesn’t mean that they’ll automatically need one now. 

Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

If you want to work in Canada without LMIA, the first step is to get your Canadian Experience Class (CEC) issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). This will enable you to apply for a work permit as a foreign worker.

The CEC requires that applicants have at least one year of full-time work experience in Canada in the last ten years or a minimum number of 1,560 hours of paid work experience in Canada.

One must also be a Canadian citizen or resident who has been living on an official form of identification since becoming qualified for permanent residence status in Canada.

This means that if your visa expires while still abroad but before applying for permanent residency through CIC’s Express Entry system, then there would be no need for this requirement.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I Get A Job Offer Without LMIA?

A Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) must support a valid job offer.

2. Can I Apply For A Job In Canada Without A Work Permit?

International workers must obtain a work permit to work in Canada, with a few exceptions.

3. Which Type Of Work Permit Does Not Need LMIA?

An open work permit allows foreign workers to work in any position.

4. Can You Buy LMIA?

No. Legally in Canada, you cannot buy or sell LMIAs. 

5. How Much Does LMIA Cost?

$1000 per requested position. 

6. Can I Come To Canada Without LMIA?

Canada allows some foreign workers to come to work in Canada without an LMIA.

7. Who Pays For LMIA?

Employers must pay $1,000 for each position requested.

8. Which Comes First, LMIA Or A Work Permit?

After receiving a positive LMIA, the employer must inform the foreign national to apply for a work permit or permanent residence.

9. How Many Months Is The Process Of LMIA In Canada?

How long will it take for the authorities to take the permit? The human resource authorities typically take around two months to comply with any LMIA request. 

10. Is Getting LMIA Difficult?

It’s very, very difficult.


In summary, there are many ways to work in Canada without an LMIA. You just need to make sure that you have the right skills and experience for the job. For example, if you’re willing to move up from a lower-level position that doesn’t require LMIA, then applying for an IMP will be easier. You can also look into working under a Canadian Experience Class (CEC) application if your job is in a skilled occupation with few applicants. However, even though it might not seem like it at first glance, getting an LMIA is still worth pursuing because it may help save time later on down the line when applying for other types of employment opportunities.

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