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Spousal Open Work Permit

Spousal Open Work Permit

Spousal Open Work Permit

Spouse or Common-Law Partners may qualify to apply for an open work permit under following programs:

  • Spouses or common-law partners of skilled workers [C41]
  • Spouses or common-law partners of full-time students [C42]
  • Spouses or common-law partners under inland spousal sponsorship

10 +

Years Of Experience

10000 +

Successful Applications

Spouses or common-law partners of skilled workers (C41)

Spouses or common-law partners of skilled workers coming to Canada or working in Canada may apply for an open work permit without having an offer of employment. A dependent spouse or common-law partner is eligible to apply for an open work permit under Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exemption code C41 if the principal foreign worker:

  • Holds a work permit that is valid for a period of at least 6 months, or, if working under the authority of section R186 without a work permit, presents evidence that they will be working for a minimum of 6 months.
  • Is employed in an occupation that falls within National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill type 0, A or B.
  • Physically resides or plans to physically reside in Canada while working.
Specific eligibility requirements for different programs
Spouses or common-law partners of Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP) work permit holders

Spouses or common-law partners may apply for an open work permit if their spouse or common-law partner is an AIP participant and is employed in an NOC skill type 0, A, B or C position. 

Spouses or common-law partners of bridging open work permit (BOWP) holders

If the principal foreign worker has obtained a bridging open work permit (BOWP), the following eligibility requirements apply:

  • Work permits of principal foreign worker must be valid for 6 months or longer.
  • For spouses or common-law partners of federal skilled worker class (FSWC) applicants, the BOWP holder must be performing work that falls within NOC skill type 0, A or B.
  • Spouses or common-law partners of provincial nominee class (PNC) applicants may qualify for an open work permit irrespective of the skill level of the principal PNC applicant’s occupation.
  • For spouses or common-law partners of federal skilled trades class (FSTC) applicants, the BOWP holder must be performing work that is within one of the skilled trade occupations in NOC B.
  • For spouses or common-law partners of Canadian experience class (CEC) applicants, there are no set preconditions to be met by the principal CEC applicant.
  • For spouses or common-law partners of caregiver applicants (application for permanent residence under the caring for children class or caring for people with high medical needs class received before June 18, 2019), the BOWP holder must be performing work within one of the qualifying occupations in NOC 0, A or B.
  • For spouses or common-law partners of Agri-Food Pilot (AFP) applicants, the BOWP holder must be performing work that is at a level that falls within NOC 0, A or B.
Spouses or common-law partners of open work permit holders                                                           

If the principal foreign worker is the holder of an open work permit (for example, a post-graduation work permit or a working holiday work permit), he/she must be employed in a skilled occupation (NOC 0, A or B). 

Spouses or common-law partners of provincial nominee work permit holders

Spouses or common-law partners of work permit holders who have been nominated for permanent residence by a province are entitled to open work permits for the duration of the work permit of the provincial nominee principal applicant or until the expiry of the spouse or common-law partner’s passport or travel document, whichever is earlier, irrespective of the skill level of the principal applicant’s occupation.

Spouses or common-law partners of full-time students (C42)

Spouses or common-law partners of international students currently studying in Canada may apply for an open work permit. A dependent spouse or common-law partner is eligible to apply for an open work permit under Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exemption code C42 if their spouse/common law partner is a study permit holder and is a full-time student at:

    • A public post-secondary institution, such as A college / trade/technical school / university / CEGEP in Quebec.
    • A private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as a public post-secondary institution in Quebec.
    • A private or public secondary or post-secondary institution (in Quebec) offering qualifying programs of 900 hours or longer leading to a diploma of vocational studies or an attestation of vocational specialization.
    • A Canadian private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees (for example, a bachelor’s degree, master’s, or doctorate) but only if the student is enrolled in one of the programs of study leading to a degree, as authorized by the province and not in just any program of study offered by the private institution. Spouses or common-law partners of full-time students are eligible for open or open/restricted work permits, depending on whether a medical examination has been passed. There is no need for an offer of employment before issuing a work permit.
Validity

Work permits may be issued with a validity date to coincide with the spouse’s study permit.

Spouses or common-law partners under inland spousal sponsorship

Open work permits under this program are limited to applicants living in Canada who have applied under the spouse or common-law partner in Canada class, and who have temporary resident status or are eligible to restore their temporary resident status (as a visitor, student, or worker) and live at the same address as their sponsor. Open work permit allows spouse/common law partners to work in Canada while their permanent residency application is in process. 

  • The sponsorship, permanent residence, and open work permit applications may all be submitted together if you have not submitted your sponsorship application. The applications should be submitted to the Case Processing Centre in Mississauga (CPC-M), Ontario.
  • Paper based open work permit application may be submitted to the Case Processing Centre in Vegreville (CPC-V), Alberta, if your permanent residence application is submitted but has not yet received approval in principle.
  • Paper based or an online open work permit application may be submitted to the Case Processing Centre in Vegreville (CPC-V), Alberta, if your permanent residence application has been approved in principle.