Starting February 17, 2016, foreign nationals in the television
and film industry whose position or occupation is essential to a
television or film production (regardless of whether the production
is foreign or Canadian) may be be eligible for an exemption for the
Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) requirement. Generally,
these positions are high wage and unionized.
Until February 17, 2016, foreign nationals in the television and
film industry have required LMIAs prior to obtaining a work permit
regardless of whether their position or occupation was considered
to be essential to a production or provided a significant economic
benefit to Canada.
Who is eligible for this television and film production LMIA
A foreign national should qualify for the LMIA exemption if:
The employer can confirm in writing
that the individual and position are essential to the television or
film production and that the production will result in a
significant economic benefit to Canada; and
The relevant union or guild can
confirm in writing that the work to be performed is subject to a
collective agreement and that the union or guild has no objection
to the foreign national working in the specified position for the
What this means for Employers?
Employers must pay an employer compliance fee and submit an
Offer of Employment to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
(IRCC) or the work permit will be refused. The work permit can be
issued for up to two (2) years or until the expiry of the travel
document, whichever is earlier.
This television and film LMIA exemption will significantly
reduce the time required to process work permits and allow
employers to bring certain television and film workers into Canada
much faster than they were able to do with an LMIA requirement.
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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