canada Archives - Immigration Lawyer Vancouver, Canada | Sas & Ing Immigration Law Centre

HomeTagcanada Archives - Immigration Lawyer Vancouver, Canada | Sas & Ing Immigration Law Centre

As immigration lawyers we are frequently told by clients “I don’t need a work permit - I’m just volunteering!” Understanding what is considered work and what is considered volunteering is vital to ensure that you maintain valid legal status while in Canada. For those in Canada on visitor status, it is important to know what you can and can’t do without a work permit. Providing services without receiving payment does not equal “volunteering” and in most cases will require a work permit.

On June 27, 2023 the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, the Honourable Sean Fraser, announced the creation of a new and groundbreaking “Tech Talent Strategy” that is intended to attract technology workers to Canada. While similar initiatives such as the Global Skills Strategy have been created in the past, the Tech Talent Strategy differs from its predecessors because it takes a holistic approach to improving our current immigration system when it comes to Canada’s ability to attract and retain technology workers. Employers working in the technology sector will want to familiarize themselves with the details of the Tech Talent Strategy.

Last week’s announcement by Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Refugees Canada (IRCC), the Honourable Sean Fraser, was indeed a welcome development for international students in Canada who have unknowingly fallen prey to unscrupulous immigration representatives.  But let’s be clear - this does not let all Canadian international students off the hook for transgressions while studying.  The onus on all foreign nationals seeking status in Canada is a very high standard and it is worth reviewing to remind students what their responsibilities are while studying in Canada.

Federal employees of Service Canada, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB), and the Canada Border Services Agency (CSBA) are all members of the largest workers union in Canada: The Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC). Many of the non-essential workers of PSAC went on strike on April 19, 2023, which is expected to cause significant delays and disruption to immigration-related services across the country.

In my over thirty years of practice as an immigration lawyer it has been a fundamental principal of immigration processing that applicants should generally apply for both Canadian temporary or permanent status from outside of Canada. While there are some exceptions to this requirement, they have been few. That all changed during the global pandemic with many workers, students and visitors being stranded in Canada with no ability to travel for months and, in some cases, years.

On October 7, 2022 the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, the Honourable Sean Fraser, announced that international students will soon be able to work off-campus for an unlimited number of hours. Previously, international students were capped at working only up to 20 hours per week during the academic year. The Minister’s new policy will take effect from November 15, 2022 until December 31, 2023 and it is expected to apply to about 500,000 international students in Canada. While this policy is intended to benefit the Canadian economy during this period of economic recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the policy is unlikely to benefit international students for two main reasons that I discuss below.

It comes as no surprise to most Canadians that we are facing an extreme shortage of doctors across Canada.  Many people have been lacking a family doctor for years.  With a view to alleviating this problem, this past Friday, September 23, 2022, Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, the Honourable Sean Fraser, announced significant changes to the way that doctors are assessed for permanent residence to Canada under the Express Entry selection program. 

As immigration lawyers we are consulted by a wide range of individuals with a great variety of immigration goals. Interestingly a lot of the questions and concerns that our clients have are the same. If you are considering coming to Canada, it is useful to turn to the basic primary school lesson about the 5W’s - who, what, where, when and why - to ask yourself the essential questions about this process and to prepare yourself as much as possible for the immigration experience.

On April 4, 2022 the Department of Employment and Social Development Canada (“ESDC”) announced sweeping new Temporary Foreign Worker Program ("TFWP") policies that will make it easier for Canadian employers to hire temporary foreign workers (“TFWs”) through the Labour Market Impact Assessment (“LMIA”) process. These policies come on the heels of strong economic reports showing that the Canadian economy has rebounded from the worst effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and that there is currently a high job vacancy rate in the country. Let’s review the three major changes that every employer needs to know!

Sas and Ing Immigration Law Centre LLP

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