The Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) is jointly managed by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). The TFWP allows employers to hire foreign workers in situations where Canadian citizens and permanent residents are not available or qualified to fill positions in the Canadian labour market.
If you are interested in hiring a temporary foreign worker, you may want to consult the following step-by-step guide: How to Hire a Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW): A Guidebook for Employers.
In most cases, employers who wish to hire temporary foreign workers must first apply for a labour market opinion. A positive labour market opinion supports the hiring of foreign workers for temporary positions in Canada.
This process ensures that temporary foreign workers have a positive impact on the Canadian labour market and that these workers are not competing with Canadians for the same jobs. For more information, please visit HRSDC's Web site.
The CIC's Temporary Foreign Worker Units offer guidance to employers and/or their authorized representatives who want to employ foreign workers. These units will not respond to inquiries from any other source or from foreign workers themselves.
The units pre-screen supporting documents from employers to streamline the application process. These units also provide opinions to border services officers who screen foreign workers at border crossings and airports to ensure they meet eligibility requirements.
For more information, please visit CIC's Web site.
CIC is responsible for processing work permit applications outside Canada and for processing work permit extension applications from within Canada. A work permit is required for most temporary jobs in Canada although there are some exceptions (e.g. certain business people).
Border services officers at ports of entry make the final decision on who may enter Canada. With respect to the TFWP, this includes assessing admissibility, work permit eligibility and other documentary requirements. For more information on applying for work permits at ports of entry, please visit CIC's Web site.
Meeting all the requirements to work under the TFWP does not guarantee a person's entry into Canada. A prospective temporary foreign worker must also prove to a border services officer that he or she is admissible to Canada and meets the requirements of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (see sections 34-42 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act).