Since the beginning of time (or so it seems), Canadian
immigration law has had a large black hole from which no one could
escape. That black hole was the 'gap' between the legal
allowance for foreign repair personnel to service equipment in
Canada while still under warranty or service agreement, but
thereafter, the disallowance to carry out such service. Unless a
repairperson could be characterized under some other non-LMIA
category (e.g. Intra-Company Transfer or NAFTA/Free Trade Agreement
professional), he/she would typically be unable to enter Canada to
service the equipment (or would require an unduly burdensome LMIA).
This was a source of great frustration. Canadian companies had
equipment which legitimately needed service by an overseas vendor
or expert, but there was no legal 'tool' by which to get
these people to come to Canada.
Effective May 21, 2015, this has finally changed. Citizenship
and Immigration Canada (CIC) has recognized this problem (and
indeed the harm it causes to Canada). To remedy the situation, CIC
has expanded the non-LMIA work permit category of 'Emergency
Repair' to include repairs/maintenance beyond the warranty or
service period. (For those who wish to refer to the technical legal
source, this would be LMIA Exemption Code C-13.)
'Emergency Repair' is a category that CIC has used to
override the need for a Labour Market Impact Assessment, and thus,
allow a foreign worker to apply directly for a work permit at a
Port of Entry, or Visa Post, as the case may be. Until now, this
exemption was available only to foreign workers to
provide "emergency services, including medical
services, for the protection or preservation of life or
property". This was a very limiting approach, and it was
typically a difficult onus to satisfy an officer that there was
urgency to the matter.
Now, this provision has been expanded to allow foreign workers
to come to Canada "to repair industrial or commercial
equipment that is no longer under warranty or covered by an
after-sales or lease agreement". This is a MAJOR change.
The need to demonstrate "...protection or preservation of life
or property" has been eliminated (or at least altered to
accommodate this provision). This provision recognizes the need for
preventative work and/or repair, without which there would be a
negative impact on productivity (which, it would seem, is commonly
the case in the need for maintenance or repair).
This is indeed an important change. Please note, however, that
there are still some conditions, including requirements that:
Specific knowledge is needed for the repair;
The manufacturer have no commercial presence in Canada;
Canadian jobs would be greatly affected without timely
Further, there is some specific documentation required,
A letter from the home employer with information to satisfy CIC
of the employee's status with the company and purpose of
The IMM5802 – the 'Employer Compliance'
documentation now required for all non-LMIA work permit
Evidence of the foreign employee's proprietary or
specialized knowledge to repair the equipment.
These work permits will be available for periods of up to 30
days – which is usually enough to complete the necessary
work. Arguments can be made, where appropriate, for longer
This is a very welcome breakthrough which finally addresses a
problem which has caused great difficulties to Canadian companies,
as well as the foreign companies/employees who are required to
service them. Subject, as always, to meeting the substantive legal
and procedural requirements, bringing foreign repair personnel to
Canada should become much less cumbersome.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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October 12th, 2016 - Immigration authorities conducted the 21st round of invitations under Express Entry in 2016 and 44th overall, inviting 1518 applicants for permanent residence with a lowest CRS score of 484.
October 19th, 2016 - Immigration authorities conducted the 22nd round of invitations under Express Entry in 2016 and 45th overall, inviting 1804 applicants for permanent residence, the largest number ever. The lowest CRS score was 475, a decline from the previous draw.
September 21st, 2016 - Immigration authorities conducted the 20th round of invitations under Express Entry in 2016 and 43rd overall, inviting 1288 applicants for permanent residence with a lowest CRS score of 483.
A unique feature of the new Canada express entry immigration system is that candidates can improve their comprehensive ranking score while in the express entry pool, without submitting a new application. We review important strategies.
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