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An LMIA-exempt work permit eliminates the need for a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) report from ESDC, allowing employers to hire foreign workers without it. This type of work permit is issued to individuals falling under specific categories, such as those employed under international agreements, etc.

Eligibility Requirements for LMIA Exempt Work Permit:

Foreign workers seeking LMIA-exempt work permits must demonstrate eligibility in their specific category. Evidence and documents supporting their eligibility need to be submitted to IRCC. Eligibility criteria vary based on the sector and job type. For example, individuals employed under NAFTA must prove their status as professionals engaged in trading and services, investors in Canada, or intra-company transferees.

How to Obtain an LMIA Exempt Work Permit:

IRCC has outlined LMIA exemption categories, each with distinct eligibility requirements. Applicants should check criteria specific to their job sector. Foreign workers can then demonstrate that their stay in Canada falls under NAFTA, GATS, IMP, or any other international agreement. Additionally, a job offer from a Canadian employer is necessary for an LMIA Exempt Work Permit.


In some cases, Canadian authorities issue LMIA-exempt work permits, allowing employers to hire foreign workers even without a positive LMIA. However, eligibility criteria must be met. The request for LMIA exemption must follow the proper procedure, and employers must prove that the hired worker falls under any of the listed LMIA exclusions. 

Although an LMIA positive is not required under this program, a work permit is still mandatory for employment in Canada. The process is simplified compared to LMIA-required work permits. Foreign nationals must have a job offer from a Canadian employer or be authorized to perform volunteer work in Canada. Canadian employers must also meet eligibility requirements for issuing a job offer to a foreign worker. ImmiLaw Global can assist with LMIA exemption work permit processing and associated formalities, ensuring efficient visa and work permit issuance. As a trusted provider of Canadian immigration services, we specialize in various visa and work permit processes, ensuring timely and accurate approvals.

Documents Required for an LMIA Exempt Work Permit:

Documents needed for an LMIA Exempt work permit include proof of eligibility under immigration streams like NAFTA, ICT, and IEC, an offer letter from a Canadian employer, evidence that the offered job is LMIA exempt, proof of work experience, completed work permit applications, a statement of fund availability demonstrating sufficient funds for the applicant and dependents, and a valid passport.

What if the LMIA Exempt Application is Rejected:

If the LMIA Exempt application is rejected, IRCC will explain the decision. Applicants can address the issues raised by submitting additional documents or justifications. The application can be re-submitted with the relevant documents.

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