Navigating the complexities of the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) process can be challenging for Canadian employers. One common question is: how many LMIAs can an employer get? The answer isn’t straightforward, as it depends on various factors specific to each situation. Here’s a detailed look at what you need to know.

Understanding LMIA Limits

For most cases, employers can obtain as many LMIA approvals as they legitimately need. However, there are specific conditions and limitations:

  • Low-Wage Occupations: There is a cap on the number of foreign workers that a business can employ in low-wage positions. This is to ensure that employers are not overly dependent on foreign labor for roles that could be filled by Canadians.
  • Regional Unemployment Levels: Restrictions may apply based on the unemployment rates in certain regions, impacting the number of LMIAs that can be approved for those areas.

Types of LMIAs

There are four main types of LMIAs:

  1. High-Wage LMIA: For positions that offer wages above the median hourly wage in the province.
  2. Low-Wage LMIA: For positions offering wages below the median hourly wage.
  3. PR-Supported LMIA: Can be either with a work permit or without, facilitating permanent residency.
  4. Investor LMIA: For foreign investors planning to invest in Canadian businesses. This can involve any percentage of ownership and may be applied for before or after the investment.

Each province has specific wage requirements that help determine whether an LMIA is classified as high-wage or low-wage.

Applying for an LMIA Without a Named Foreign Worker

Employers do not necessarily need to have a foreign worker identified before applying for an LMIA. Service Canada can evaluate the LMIA application without the worker’s name. However, employers must continue their efforts to recruit Canadians or permanent residents for the role until a Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) is selected. Once the TFW is identified, their name and relevant information must be provided before the LMIA expires.

To make sure your LMIA application is successful make sure to advertise the position accordingly. Ensure you have advertised the job in accordance with LMIA requirements before submitting the application. This is crucial for the success of the LMIA application. We suggest platforms like Newcomers Hire, Canadian Youth Hire, and Indigenous Hire to post your jobs.

Exceptions exist where unnamed LMIA applications are not permitted, depending on the stream and province/territory.

Validity Period of an LMIA

Generally, an LMIA is valid for six months across all streams of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), except for the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP). It’s crucial for employers and foreign workers to act quickly within this period to ensure all necessary immigration applications are submitted.

Steps After Receiving LMIA Approval

Securing an LMIA is just the beginning. The foreign worker must still obtain a work permit before starting employment. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Forward the LMIA Confirmation Letter: Once received, send a copy to the foreign worker.
  2. Assist with Work Permit Application: Ensure the worker applies for their work permit promptly. The work permit will include your company’s name unless the worker has already achieved Permanent Resident status. If you need any assistance during this process don’t hesitate to contact us at 587-837-2571

By understanding these nuances and preparing accordingly, employers can successfully navigate the LMIA process and hire the talent they need from abroad.

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