Postgraduate Work Permit
For more than four and a half years, every week my articles come out on immigration topics and in this publication I would like to highlight the issue of Post-Graduation Work Permits (PGWP) – this is a quite common phenomenon and we do this type of visa regularly.
So, the postgraduate work permit is an OPEN work visa (with the right to get a job in any company, in any province, without restriction), which is issued to those foreign nationals who have graduated from a Canadian educational institution accredited by the Ministry of Immigration, for a program of at least 900 academic hours or at least 8 months. Moreover, the applicant for a postgraduate work permit must have a diploma of Canadian college or university (or a letter from an educational institution confirming obtaining of a diploma in the near future).
What are the features of this type of permit?
First, as mentioned earlier, with help of this permit you can get a job in any province and from any employer (the only nuance, if a work is related to the health care or education sector, you will need to undergo medical checks and get permission to get rid of restrictions related to these areas).
Secondly, this permit is usually issued for a period equal to the duration of study (recently the Ministry even generously increases this period, which is positive). In any case, the maximum allowable period for a postgraduate work permit is 3 years.
Thirdly, this permit is non-renewable and may be issued only once. Even if a person, having worked, goes to study again, he will no longer be able to re-apply for PGWP. There is a small exception when, for example, a person applies for a visa, the passport expiration date is shorter than the duration of the visa period. Then the visa will be valid for the period of validity of the passport and you will need to apply for its renewal with a new passport, but the renewal is carried out only for the period that was not covered by the previous visa, that is, in fact, this is not an extension, but just the use of the entire period provided by the visa.
What else is interesting about PGWP?
Of course, the fact that it, in most cases, provides its owner with a sufficient period of time for obtaining a permanent residence in Canada.
Another interesting point: family members of the holder of a postgraduate work permit have the right to extend the period of stay in the country – children as temporary residents and the spouse – as a temporary foreign worker .
The only trend that has been monitored recently and it becomes more frequent is that when a spouse gets a work permit, there might be inspections of the Ministry of Immigration regarding the position held by the holder of a postgraduate work permit — there must be a professional class 0, A or B, otherwise it is risky for the spouse to get refusals on a work permit visa application.
You need to apply for a PGWP 2-3 months before the end of your stay in the country (on a study permit). Typically, a study permit is issued with the addition of three months so that its owner has had enough time to apply for a PGWP.