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Updates to Bridging Open Work Permit Eligibility

Blog posted on by Evelyn Ackah in Canada Work Permits

Updates to Bridging Open Work Permit Eligibility

Canada's IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) has made updates to the Bridging Open Work Permit that make the work permit more available and flexible to immigrant applicants. The key changes to the Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP) include:

  • Applicants can apply before the previous 4 month application window.
  • Previously applicants were required to have an active work permit. Applicants may now be eligible for BOWP if their work permit has expired and they are eligible for restoration, or if they are in Canada on maintained status.
  • BOWP applications are now available to:
    • Foreign nationals in the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) applicants if their application included a copy of the nomination letter issued by the nominating province or territory that indicates their employment is unrestricted and they selected “Open Work Permit” on their application form.
    • Agri-Food Pilot applicants if they submit their application online and provide their approval in principle letter in the “Client Information” field with their work permit online application.
    • Quebec skilled workers if they submit a completeness check [R10], and the CSQ was valid when the application for PR was submitted.

What Is a Bridging Open Work Permit?

Eligible foreign nationals currently working in Canada under an open work permit who have applied for permanent residence can apply for a Bridging Open Work Permit and they can keep working while their PR application is being processed. BOWP applicants do not need a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).

Qualifications for a Bridging Open Work Permit

Per IRCC, to qualify for a Bridging Open Work Permit, applicants must

  • currently be living and working in Canada
  • have valid temporary resident status
  • have submitted an APR as the principal applicant under one of the following classes:
    • federal skilled worker class (FSWC)
    • Canadian experience class (CEC)
    • federal skilled trades class (FSTC)
    • caring for children class or caring for people with high medical needs class before June 18, 2019
    • Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) for applicants for whom there are no employer restrictions on nominations
    • Agri-Food Pilot (AFP)
    • Quebec skilled worker class (QSWC)

Eligibility of Spouses, Common-Law Partner and Dependent Children Eligibility for BOWP

The spouse or common-law partner of a Bridging Open Work Permit may be eligible for an open work permit as a spouse or common-law partner of a skilled worker.

Dependent children of a permanent residence applicant in a qualifying economic class are not eligible for an open work permit, and must apply for an LMIA or have an LMIA exemption.

Do You Need Help Applying For A Canada Work Permit?

Immigration applications can be confusing, and a simple error or missed deadline can cause your application to be denied. The experienced immigration lawyers at Ackah Business Immigration Law can determine your eligibility for a Canadian work permit, prepare and submit your application and troubleshoot, provide solutions and alternative options for your specific situation.

📞Contact Ackah Law BEFORE you try to file your work permit application (403) 452‑9515



Evelyn L. Ackah, BA, LL.B.

Founder/Managing Lawyer

Ms. Ackah is passionate about immigration law because it focuses on people and relationships, which are at the core of her personal values. Starting her legal career as a corporate/commercial ...

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