Apply for Work permit

You can apply for a work permit online or on paper.

You need to give your biometrics

In most cases, you now need to give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics) after you apply.

Why you should apply online

  • No courier fees or mail delivery time – IRCC get your application instantly.
  • Online applications may be processed more quickly.
  • Avoid processing delays. Incomplete applications are returned to you. Applying online helps ensure your application is complete before you submit it.
  • If IRCC need to ask for more documents, you can quickly submit them online.
  • You don’t need to submit your passport until IRCC ask for it.
  • Get updates on the status of your application directly in your online account.

You need to give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics)

In most cases, you need to give biometrics. After you pay the biometrics fee and submit your application, IRCC’ll send you a letter that says you need to give your biometrics. The letter will tell you how and where to give your biometrics. You have up to 30 days to give your biometrics (in person).

If you didn’t pay the biometrics fee, IRCC’ll send you a letter asking you to do this first. You can only get the instruction letter if you pay the biometrics fee.

To come to Canada temporarily, you need to give biometrics once every 10 years. If you gave biometrics in the past and they’re still valid, you don’t need to give them again.

IRCC process your work permit application

An officer will also check:

  • the list of employers who failed to comply with the conditions to make sure that the employer can hire you, and
  • that you qualify for a work permit and have given IRCC all the documents IRCC need

If your application is approved

If your application is approved, you’ll get a letter that says you’re allowed to work in Canada. Bring this letter with you when you travel to Canada.

That letter is not a work permit. You’ll get your work permit when you arrive in Canada.

The work permit will outline:

  • the type of work you can do
  • the employer you can work for
  • where you can work, and
  • how long you can work
If you applied for your work permit at the port of entry

If you’re eligible to apply for the work permit as you enter Canada and are approved, the border services officer may then give you a work permit that sets out any conditions on your stay and work in Canada.

If you applied for your work permit from inside Canada

If you’re eligible to apply from within Canada, IRCC’ll mail the work permit to the Canadian address you gave IRCC