Learning Moments - Extension of T13 Provincial Nominee Work Permit
This article by Andrew Carvajal is part of the Immigration Education Alliance (IMEDA) weekly column titled "Learning Moments".
Hello fellow practitioners. Today’s column deals with the extension of a T13 work permit as a provincial nominee during the processing of a permanent residence application.
An applicant for permanent residence under a provincial nominee program (employer job offer stream) has been waiting for the result at the Federal final stage of processing. His work permit was issued as a result of the provincial nomination pursuant to R204(c) – LMIA exemption T13. Now this work permit is about to expire and we are unsure when the processing of the permanent residence application will be complete. As such, the applicant must apply for an extension of this work permit.
My question is whether this person can apply for a Bridging Open Work Permit or does he need to apply for a T13 work permit again? If that is the case, does his employer need to go through the same process of paying the employer compliance fee and completing the online offer for this work permit extension?
It is most likely the case that the permanent residence applicant described by our reader will need to apply for another work permit as a provincial nominee (T13) in order to extend his status in Canada. The definitive answer will lie in the original Certificate of Nomination issued by the province and whether it stipulates an “employer restriction” in the nomination. As per IRCC’s guidelines for Bridging open work permits (BOWPs) for certain federal economic class applicants, the eligibility for permanent residence for applicants of the provincial nominee class is restricted to those “for whom there are no employer restrictions”.
As our reader described that the applicant in question obtained a provincial nomination under a stream that involved a job offer, it is most likely that his provincial Certificate of Nomination specifies that he can only work for a specific employer. As an example, this is the case for all nomination certificates issued by the province of Ontario under employer-driven streams. In those cases, applicants cannot apply for a Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP), but rather need to apply for the employer-specific work permit under LMIA exemption T13.
There are variations to this, however. We have seen nomination certificates under employer-driven stream from other provinces, such as British Columbia, that do not impose employer restrictions. If that is the case, then a permanent residence applicant could apply for a BOWP. As mentioned above, an immigration practitioner will need to examine the Certificate of Nomination and look for any restrictions on employment.
If there are employment restrictions and the applicant needs to extend his status through another T13 work permit, then the employer will again need to submit an online offer through the IRCC Employer Portal and pay the employer compliance fee.
It is important to add that T13 work permit applications need to also be accompanied by a “statement from the province that it has determined that all factors required for the issuance of a work permit under paragraph R204(c) as per its agreement with Canada have been met”. This is normally found in a letter of support issued by the nominating province along with the original Certificate of Nomination, although in some cases these letters need to be requested separately from the province. Most of these letters have a limited duration (sometimes of 6 months). If that is the case and the validity of the supporting letter has expired, the nominee must request a new one before applying for a new T13 work permit. In requesting that letter from the province, the applicant should include a copy of the original Certificate of Nomination and a recent letter from the employer confirming that the job offer is still valid and that the foreign national continues to be employed by the company.
 See International Mobility Program: Federal–provincial or territorial agreements [R204(c)] (LMIA exemption code T13) https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/corporate/publications-manuals/operational-bulletins-manuals/temporary-residents/foreign-workers/exemption-codes/federal-provincial-territorial-agreements-r204-lmia-exemption-code-t13.html
Andrew Carvajal is a Toronto lawyer and partner at Desloges Law Group specializing in immigration law, administrative law and Small Claims Court litigation.