If you are curious about the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and you want to understand its framework, you have come to the right place. Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a crucial step for Canadian employers who want to hire foreign workers. LMIA is a document issued by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) that confirms the need for a foreign worker to fill a job vacancy and that no Canadian worker is available to perform the job. It ensures that hiring a foreign worker will positively impact the Canadian labour market and that the foreign worker is not taking a job away from a Canadian worker. The process can be complex and time-consuming, and understanding the requirements and regulations can be challenging. But not to worry, we have got you covered.

Over here, you can find detailed and robust information on high-wage and low-wage positions, the median hourly wages by province/territory, and how to expedite an LMIA application. So whether you are an employer seeking to hire a foreign worker or a foreign worker looking to work in Canada, you can find all the resources you need to navigate the LMIA process successfully here.

What is LMIA?

A Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a document issued by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) that assesses the impact of hiring a foreign worker on the Canadian labour market. It is a way for the government to ensure that the Canadian labour market is protected and that foreign workers are not taking jobs that Canadian workers could fill.

Who needs LMIA?

Any employer who wishes to hire a foreign worker for a job in Canada must obtain an LMIA, with a few exceptions. These exceptions include but are not restricted to:

  1. International trade agreements like NAFTA allow certain foreign workers to enter Canada without an LMIA.
  2. Intra-company transferees who are being transferred to Canada to work for a Canadian branch of their company.
  3. Workers who are coming to Canada for charitable or religious work.
  4. Workers who are coming to Canada as part of an exchange program.

Employers must obtain an LMIA before hiring a foreign worker for all other cases.

Types of LMIA
There are two types of LMIA: positive and negative.

Positive LMIA – A positive LMIA is issued when ESDC determines that there is a need for a foreign worker to fill a job vacancy and that there are no Canadian workers available to perform the job. With a positive LMIA, the employer can hire a foreign worker to fill the job vacancy.

Negative LMIA – A negative LMIA is issued when ESDC determines that there is no need for a foreign worker to fill a job vacancy and that Canadian workers are available to perform the job. In this case, the employer cannot hire a foreign worker to fill the job vacancy.

How to apply for LMIA

To apply for an LMIA, employers must follow these steps in order.

Step 1

Determine the Job Offer
The employer must determine the job offer they wish to make to a foreign worker, including the job duties, qualifications, and compensation.

Step 2

Advertise the Job
The employer must advertise the job vacancy in Canada for a certain period to prove that there are no Canadian workers available to perform the job.

Step 3

Apply for LMIA
The employer must apply for an LMIA through the ESDC website, providing all necessary documents, including proof of the job vacancy, evidence of recruitment efforts, and a detailed job offer.

Step 4

Pay the Fee
The employer must pay the LMIA processing fee, currently CAD 1,000 per application.

Step 5

Wait for Processing
The employer must wait for the LMIA application to be processed, which can take several weeks. Then, if approved, the employer can hire a foreign worker to fill the job vacancy.

High-wage workers

The processing time for high-wage LMIA is approximately ten business days, and the employer must pay a CAD 1,000 processing fee. In addition, employers must provide proof of an advertisement for the job vacancy, proof that the wage being offered is consistent with the median salary for the occupation, and proof that the employer has made efforts to recruit Canadian workers for the job.

Low-Wage Workers

The processing time for low-wage LMIA is approximately 10-12 weeks, and the employer must pay a CAD 275 processing fee. In addition, employers are required to provide proof of an advertisement for the job vacancy, proof that the wage being offered is consistent with the median salary for the occupation, and proof that the employer has made efforts to recruit Canadian workers for the job.

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Median hourly wages by province

In Canada, the median hourly wage varies by province and territory. The median hourly wage for 2019, according to Statistics Canada, was as follows:

  • Alberta: $27.00
  • British Columbia: $25.00
  • Manitoba: $21.15
  • New Brunswick: $20.00
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: $22.00
  • Northwest Territories: $34.00
  • Nova Scotia: $20.00
  • Nunavut: $36.00
  • Ontario: $24.00
  • Prince Edward Island: $19.00
  • Quebec: $22.00
  • Saskatchewan: $23.00
  • Yukon: $31.00

Expediting an LMIA

Employers who require an LMIA on an urgent basis can apply for an expedited LMIA. Expedited LMIA is for employers who need to hire a foreign worker to prevent a significant disruption to their business. The employer must provide proof that there is an urgent need for the foreign worker, such as a contract that needs to be fulfilled or a critical position that needs to be filled. The processing time for an expedited LMIA is typically five business days.

The Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is an important document for employers who wish to hire foreign workers in Canada. It is part of a robust framework that cannot be overridden. We understand the pain and trouble of the long process one ends up going through. But not to worry, you can put all your worries to rest as we are here to take care of all your concerns regarding LMIA and immigration.

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