Many of our clients come to Canada to work or study temporarily.
Oftentimes, these clients ask if they can bring a spouse or family member with them. Our answer to this question is: in most cases, yes! Oftentimes, your spouse or family member is deemed eligible for an open work permit, which will allow them to work full-time while you study or work.
The Open Work Permit is a type of work permit that allows a person to work for any employer in Canada. There are a few exceptions to this rule, which includes those listed as ineligible on the list of employers who have failed to comply with conditions.
You may be considered eligible for an open work permit if you are:
-> a spouse of a skilled worker in an occupation under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill type 0, A or B approved to work in Canada six months or longer,
-> a spouse of a foreign student at a public post-secondary school, such as a college or university or college d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEP) in Quebec,
The spousal open work permit processing time is generally four to five months. This can differ depending on where and when you submit your application.
You can apply for the open work permit before or after you arrive in Canada. Often, spouses will come to Canada to visit their partner at school/work. While in Canada as a visitor, they submit the application for the open work permit.
For spouses of students, it’s important to show that they have the financial resources to support themselves (as a student) and their spouse
- For spouses of workers, it’s crucial that you show an employment letter from the employer in Canada
- The letter should confirm that the worker in Canada is employed in a skilled position (it must show the duties they perform)
- You should also include at least 2 payslips from the employer showing that they’re earning money
You must show that your relationship is valid - especially if it’s a new marriage. If you recently married your spouse, you should treat your application more like a sponsorship application than a work permit application.
- Provide proof of relationship such as: a marriage certificate, photos, proof of communication, proof of shared funds, etc.