Work Authorization Summary Sheet

Primary Immigration Category for Temporary Expatriates

Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Work Permits – For foreign nationals transferred internally to Canada for a temporary assignment. Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) Exempt.

Key Criteria

  • Employee must meet minimum educational/experience requirements to qualify as either a Specialized Knowledge Worker or Manage
  • Must be transferred to a branch, subsidiary or affiliate of the current employer
  • Employee must have worked continuously for the current employer at least one year in the preceding 3 years in a position similar to the Canadian position

Validity Period & Extensions

Initial work permit length: 1-2 years
Extension process: Application to extend temporary work status should be initiated at least 6 months
prior to expiration.
Maximum period allowed in status: 5 years for Specialized Knowledge workers and 7 years for


Steps in Immigration Process

  1. Work permit application filed by the applicant at the border (for visa-exempt nationals) OR at the Canadian Consulate (for visa required nationals)
  2. Provide biometrics and obtain visa stamp (for visa required nationals). Work permit is issued at the border for all applicants.


Estimated lead time: 1-2 months for visa exempt nationals and 3-5 months for visa required nationals

Be Aware!

  • ANY business visit to Canada should be reviewed by a consultant as Canada is extremely strict on allowable activities for business visitors.
  • Criminal history, including DUI’s, may make a traveler inadmissible to Canada. This will need to be assessed on a case by case basis.

Other Common Work Authorization Categories

  1. NAFTA Professionals – For U.S. and Mexican nationals
  2. Global Skills Strategy – For highly skilled workers requiring expedite processing
  3. Work permit exemption that allows for short-term work (15 days or 30 days) – For highly skilled workers
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