As a skilled worker, if you’ve been seeking opportunities to expand your professional horizons, this might be the right moment for you! Canada is opening its doors to US H1B visa holders, welcoming them to work within its borders. But, time is of the essence as there are only 10,000 slots available. So, act swiftly and seize this opportunity!
Canada Welcomes H1B Visa Holders
An initiative, primarily aimed at keeping highly skilled professionals in North America, has been launched by Canada. This program allows US H1B visa holders to apply for work in Canada. Under this policy, you can get an open work permit for up to 3 years. The application process is straightforward and can be carried out via the new Temporary Resident (TR) portal.
Applicants will be asked to provide their H1B visa details, such as the visa number and the expiry date. Ensure that you complete the entire application and make the required payment simultaneously. Remember, your family information and a set of essential documents will also be required. So, be well-prepared before you commence the application.
Here’s a list of documents you’ll need:
- Proof of H1B visa
- Form I-797B or I-797 (This is a letter from the US government confirming your H-1B application was approved.)
- Proof of funds
- Proof that you live in the US
This can be any document that proves you currently live in the US like a utility bill, tax report, Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, etc.
The application fee is a mere $155, making it an affordable process for many.
Who Can Apply?
This initiative is intended for anyone with a valid H-1B Specialty Occupations visa living AND currently living in the US. Successful applicants can receive an open work permit for up to three years, with the duration being contingent on your passport’s expiry date. The program will last for one year or until all 10,000 applications are received, whichever comes first.
Taking Your Family Along
Alongside you, your spouse, common-law partner, and dependent children currently living in the US can also apply to come with you to Canada, either as a visitor, a student, or a worker. Even if your family members don’t qualify under this program, they may still be eligible as family members of highly skilled workers.
The Application Process
- Prepare your documents.
- Check if a medical exam is needed for your application.
- Apply online through the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) Portal.
The processing time is approximately six weeks. Please note that an incomplete application may be refused without processing.
After the Application
Upon approval, you’ll receive a letter stating that you’re authorized to work in Canada, known as the port of entry letter of introduction. Bring this letter with you when you travel to Canada. Please note that this letter is not your work permit. You’ll receive your work permit at the port of entry the day you arrive in Canada.
We understand that you might have a few queries. So, here are a few FAQs answered for you.
- Can I apply for the open work permit under the H1B program if I’m in Canada on a closed work permit and have an H1B visa?
Unfortunately, you cannot.
- I’m facing issues with the experience page. Any advice?
Try going back a screen and then proceed again.
- Can I extend my work permit if it expires before 3 years?
While this initiative doesn’t permit extensions, you may be eligible to extend your work permit under a different program.
- Can my family members work or study in Canada under this program?
Yes, your spouse, common-law partner, and dependent children can apply to come with you to Canada as either a visitor, student, or worker.
- If my application is successful, when will I receive my work permit?
You’ll receive your work permit at the port of entry when you arrive in Canada.
- What happens if I need a medical exam for my application?
Most people don’t need a medical exam to enter Canada through this measure. However, if you do need one, ensure to schedule and complete it as soon as possible to avoid any delays in processing your application.
Remember, the clock is ticking and there are only 10,000 slots. Act now, and secure your future in Canada! Feel free to get in touch with us for professional advice.