The Canadian immigration system, known for its complexity, often requires employers to undergo various assessments and applications, with the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) being a crucial step for those seeking to hire foreign employees. Here, we will exclusively break down all the information for you to understand how to get Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).
Understanding the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)
Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is utilized by the federal government of Canada to evaluate the impact of hiring foreign nationals on the domestic employment market. Any company or organization that is looking to hire international talent is required to get a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). A positive LMIA allows the employer to proceed with offering the job to a foreign national.
However, not all Canadian employers seeking to hire foreign workers require an LMIA. Employers can opt for alternatives such as the Global Talent Stream program, Intra-Company Transfer program, or TechImmigration programs if their job offerings fall outside the LMIA framework.
How to Apply for LMIA – A Step-by-Step Guide:
- Ensure Eligibility: Confirm that your company is eligible to apply for an LMIA.
- Meet LMIA Requirements: Adhere to LMIA requirements for advertising and salary.
- Submit Online Application: Complete and submit the LMIA application form online.
- Evaluation by ESDC: Wait for Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) to assess the job offer and the application form.
- Interview with ESDC Officer: Attend an interview with an ESDC officer.
- Confirmation Letter: Receive a Confirmation Letter from ESDC if the application is successful.
Post-LMIA Approval – Next Steps for Employers
Upon LMIA approval, the onus shifts to the employee. While the LMIA and Confirmation Letter secures a foreign worker’s employment, the worker must apply for a work visa (if from a visa country) and obtain a work permit at a Canadian border. The list of documents includes a job offer letter, a signed employment contract, a copy of the LMIA, and the LMIA number.
How to Get Labour Market Impact Assessment – Employer Requirements
Meeting LMIA requirements is crucial and involves:
- Recruitment Efforts: Evidence of attempts to search for qualified domestic workers.
- Wage Classification: Distinguishing between high-wage and low-wage employees based on provincial median wage.
- Transition Plan: For high-wage workers, presenting a Transition Plan outlining commitments to workforce transition or reduction in reliance on foreign talent.
- Cap Limits: For low-wage workers, adhering to caps set by the Government of Canada, depending on the sector.
LMIA Eligibility Criteria
Before you start planning to think of how to apply for LMIA, it is essential to understand the eligibility criteria. ESDC considers various factors to determine whether a Canadian employer can employ a foreign worker. Key considerations include assessing labour shortages, recruitment efforts, compliance with regulations, salary fairness, and the potential positive impact on job creation and retention in Canada.
LMIA Processing Times in 2023
In 2023, LMIA processing times range from 10 days to 2 months. Timely and accurate application submissions are essential, considering that inconsistencies or errors can lead to significant delays.
Expedited LMIA Application
Certain occupations, including skilled trades/professions in high demand and top 10% wage earners, may qualify for expedited processing within 10 business days.
LMIA Application Costs in 2023
It is important to note that the LMIA application fee is $1,000 per employee, and employers are responsible for this cost before you plan on how to get Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). Additionally, employers may cover work permit application fees, depending on their arrangements with foreign workers.
LMIA Advertising Requirements
To hire a temporary foreign worker, employers must demonstrate efforts to recruit domestic workers. This involves advertising the position for at least 4 weeks on the Government of Canada’s Job Bank website and using two additional recruitment methods, targeting underrepresented groups.
LMIA Exemption Codes
Several LMIA exemption codes, such as Free Trade Agreements, Global Talent Stream, CUSMA, CETA, Intra-Company Transfer Program, and Facilitated LMIA for Quebec Employers, offer alternatives for employers not requiring LMIA approval.
LMIA Success Rate and Common Denial Reasons
The success rate for LMIA applications ranges from 60% to 85%. Well-prepared applications reviewed by experienced professionals tend to have higher approval rates. Common reasons for denial include a lack of genuine need for a foreign worker, non-compliance with labour laws, and misrepresentation of information.
Why Canada Uses LMIA
While Canada welcomes immigrants and foreign workers, the LMIA is in place to prioritize the economic interests of the domestic workforce. Employers must demonstrate that hiring foreign workers is a last resort after exhaustive efforts to find suitable domestic talent.
Navigating the process of how to apply for LMIA in Canada requires careful attention to eligibility criteria, application steps, and ongoing compliance. Employers seeking to hire foreign workers should approach the process systematically with the help of a professional RCIC. They will ensure that all requirements are met to increase the likelihood of a positive LMIA outcome.