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National Occupancy Classification and LMIA Applications

National Occupancy Classification and LMIA Applications

Applying for LMIA and NOC

Under the recently introduced express entry program, a confirmed offer of employment from a Canadian company would add points to your application, provided – the employer has a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (or LMIA in short) for the position and if the offer corresponds to one of the skill types in the National Occupation Classification (NOC).

What is a Labour Market Impact Assessment?

The LMIA is a process that is used to assess the likely impact of hiring a foreign worker on the Canadian job market. In essence, the LMIA would aim to show that offering a position to a foreign worker would satisfy a need for particular skill set that is needed in Canada and that no Canadians or Permanent Citizens are available for that position. The LMIA application is to be filled by the employer and submitted to the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC). This is a very rigorous and often iterative process, after which the ESDC would consider a positive LMIA only to credible offers.

What does the ESDC consider in reviewing the LMIA?

When reviewing the LMIA, some of the key factors that would affect the outcome include:

  1. Compliance of terms and conditions in the employer’s offer, to labor laws in Canada

  2. If the offered salary is comparable to salaries offered for similar positions in Canada

  3. If there is a recognized shortage of labor in the Canadian market for the listed occupation

  4. The specialization and extent to which the applicant’s skills would fill a need in Canada

  5. General reputation of the employer and if there are any on-going labor disputes

How long does the ESDC take to process the LMIA?

There is no fixed time for the ESDC to process the LMIA and so the whole process could take from weeks to months for a conclusive outcome. The ESDC however does expedite the processing time to around 10 business days for certain categories, namely; the high demand occupations listed in the skilled trades, highest paid occupations (top 10%) and for short duration work (i.e. up to 120 days)

Exemptions to the LMIA

Exemptions to the LMIA is possible only if you are already working temporarily in Canada for another employer who has completed and received a positive LMIA and/or if your employer desires to offer you a permanent job offer. You could also qualify for exemption under the International Mobility Program exemption codes if you qualify under the following:

  1. International agreements – applies to positions that fall under non trade agreements, positions under the Free Trade Agreements (FTA) and GATS professionals

  2. Canadian interests – applies to positions that bring significant benefits, reciprocal employment, research candidates, spouse of skilled workers and charitable or religious work

  3. Self-support such as refugees

  4. PR Applicants in Canada

  5. Humanitarian reasons – applies to students who are in dire need of financial assistance and those who hold a temporary residence permit valid for at least six months.

What is the National Occupancy Classification or NOC?

The National Occupancy Classification or NOC is a system developed by the Government of Canada to group jobs and profession in certain Skill categories. These skill categories are:

  1. Skill Type 0 applies to Management Jobs such as restaurant managers, mine managers, shore captains

  2. Skill Level A applies to professional jobs for which a university degree has been obtained such as doctors, dentists, engineers, architects

  3. Skill Level B applies to technical jobs and skilled trades for which a college diploma or internship would be required such as chefs, electricians, plumbers would be required

  4. Skill Level C applies to intermediate jobs which require only high school or job specific training such as long – haul truck drivers, butchers

  5. Skill Level D applies to labor jobs such as general warehouse labor, farm laborers, cleaning staff, oil field workers

What are the minimum requirements for the skilled worker program?

To apply through the skilled worker program, the applicant must qualify under skill type 0, A or B. Applications can be made either through the Federal skilled worker, Federal skilled trades program or Canadian experience class programs.

To apply through the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the applicant should satisfy the following minimum requirements:

  • At least one year (1,560 hours total / 30 hours per week), continuous full-time or an equal amount in part-time, paid work in the same job, within the last 10 years under skill type 0, or skill levels A or B of the NOC.
  • Meet the English or French proficiency requirements set by the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)

  • Educational credential assessment (ECA) from an agency approved by the CIC

  • Proof of funds to support yourself and your family – however this would not apply in case of valid job offer which has been processed through the LMIA.

To apply through the federal skilled trades program (not applicable in Quebec), the applicant should satisfy the following minimum requirements:

  • Meet the English or French proficiency requirements set by the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC)

  • At least two years full-time (or an equivalent time as a part time employee) in any of the listed skilled trades in the last 5 years

  • Satisfy job requirements specified in the NOC, except for needing a certificate of qualification

  • Offer for full time employment from a Canadian employer valid for one year (processed through the LMIA) or a certificate of qualification in that skilled trade issued by a Canadian provincial or territorial authority

To apply through the Canadian Experience Class, the applicant should satisfy the following minimum requirements:

  • Complete at least 12 months of full time or an equivalent part time skilled work experience in the last 3 years. Only skilled work experience in Managerial jobs (Skill type 0), Professional jobs (Skill type A) and Technical jobs and skilled trades (Skill type B) is recognized

  • Must have worked in Canada with valid work permits

  • Meet the English or French proficiency requirements set by the CIC

  • Educational credential assessment (ECA) from an agency approved by the CIC

What should Employers and Applicants do?

It would be the employer’s responsibility to submit a credible LMIA to the ESDC. Once a positive LMIA is received from the ESDC, the employer would have to advice the candidate to create an Express Entry profile or update the existing profile with the following:

  1. Employer name and address

  2. Employment start date

  3. LMIA number

  4. NOC code related to the job

Contact Akrami & Associates

If you are an employer and like to hire a foreign worker but unsure where to start with the LMIA application then contact Akrami & Associates at 416-477-2545 to help make the process less stressful. LMIA applications are very difficult applications and it is recommended to consult with an immigration law firm that has experience with picking the correct NOC, advertising and applying for the Work Permit once LMIA has been approved. Many clients hire individuals that have not much experience with these types of application. Do your research prior to choosing who you will go with to avoid delays and refusal application. Akrami & Associates has assisted many employers with obtaining the Positive LMIA and Work Permit for the applicant and we can help you too.

With Akrami & Associates there is always a way!!

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