Canada: Changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program Quebec Pilot Project

April 4, 2022 Jessie Butchley

Key Points  

  • Skill level C occupations will be included in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program Quebec Pilot Project  
  • Foreign nationals who have been selected for permanent residence in Quebec will be permitted to apply for an open work permit in Quebec 

Overview  

On 1 April 2022, the government of Canada introduced the next phase of the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program Quebec Pilot Program. Under this phase, the government will implement the National Occupational Classification (NOC) skill level C occupations into the Traitement Simplifie. According to the announcement, C occupations include intermediate-skilled work. The implementation of the NOC skill level C occupations is expected to be finalized on 24 May 2022.  

The government indicated that this new phase would allow Quebec employers under the TFW Program to better address labor needs in the region. In addition, immigration officials emphasized that the introduction of skill level C occupations would not affect workers already protected under the program or the median wage requirements.  

Employers will be required to: 

  • Ensure that the employment contract is signed by both the employer and the TFW.
  • Pay the cost for the round-trip transportation of the TFW to arrive at their work location in Canada at the beginning of the work period and return to their country of residence at the end of the work period. 
  • Provide or ensure that suitable and affordable housing is available for TFW hires. 
  • Ensure that TFWs hired in lower-wage positions are covered by private and/or provincial/territory health insurances once they arrive in Canada. 

Additionally, Canada will begin to issue work permits to foreign nationals who have been selected for permanent residence in Quebec. As such, foreign nationals will be permitted to apply for an open work permit so long as they have been selected to apply for permanent residence in Quebec. This will allow these individuals to work for nearly any employer in Quebec prior to submitting their application for permanent residence.  

What are the Changes?  

The government of Canada introduced the next phase of the TFW Program Quebec Pilot Project. This phase was introduced to mitigate economic growth concerns that arose throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Under this next phase, skill level C occupations will be added to the Traitement Simplifie. Previously, the Traitement Simplifie only included higher-skilled occupations.  

The government also introduced province-restricted open work permits for foreign nationals selected for permanent residence by the immigration authorities in Quebec.  

Looking Ahead  

The pilot project is expected to run until 23 Dec. 2023. The government of Canada will continue to monitor the outcome of the project. Continue to check the government of Canada’s website and Envoy’s website for the latest updates and information.  


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Content in this publication is for informational purposes only and not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an attorney at one of the two U.S. Law Firms working with the Envoy Platform or another qualified professional. On non-U.S. immigration issues, consult an Envoy global immigration service provider or another qualified representative.

About the Author

Jessie is Envoy's Global Immigration Writer.

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