Canada increases duration of provisional work authorization letters for international graduates

Canada recently increased the validity period of provisional work authorization letters issued to international graduates in the country awaiting a decision on their work permit application.

Work authorization letters will now be valid for a period of 180 days from submission of the application, compared to 120 days previously.

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What is a temporary work authorization letter?

Temporary work authorization letters are documents issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to declare that an international graduate can begin work before their work permit application receives a final decision from IRCC.

These documents are issued to international graduates, who can work full-time without a permit. working license while awaiting a decision on their work permit application, if they apply for a work permit before their study permit expires, provided that they also meet certain conditions when applying. This allows graduates to begin working before receiving a decision from IRCC regarding their work permit application.

What requirements do international graduates need to meet to receive a temp employment letter?

International graduates who wish to work before applying for their Post-graduation work permit (PGWP) must:

  • Have held a valid study permit at the time of submitting your work permit application;
  • Have completed their program of study;
  • Have met the requirements to work off campus without a work permit, namely:
  • They were full-time students and enrolled in a Designated educational institution (IDD);
  • They were following a postsecondary professional or academic training program lasting at least 8 months;
  • They have received a degree, diploma or certificate from their course; And
  • Did not exceed permitted working hours for full-time students in Canada. Note that from November 15, 2022 to April 30, 2024, students were able to work more than the regularly allocated limit of 20 hours per week, thanks to a temporary public policy adopted by IRCC.

Applicants with a temporary work authorization letter can continue to work in Canada, even after leaving and returning to the country (although it should be noted that many applicants will need a valid temporary resident visa to do this). A temporary work authorization letter is not a travel document.

What happens if 180 days pass without a decision on an application?

IRCC notes that if 180 days have passed without a decision on the application, applicants may request continued proof of authorization to work at IRCC. This can be done using the IRCC web form.

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Robert Butler

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