Economic Immigration Pathways – Temporary Residence


Varity Law is a business boutique that specializes in Economic Immigration, focusing on economic/corporate programs, skilled worker programs, and family & employer sponsorship.


As we head off to 2019, it’s essential to find the immigration program that fits you the best. In economic programs where the submission process is closer to an art than a science, it’s crucial to have an experienced economic immigration law firm walk you through this difficult journey. Our goal is to find and guide you through the cheapest, fastest, and most suitable immigration program.


Work Permit

Other than Family Sponsorship, most immigration programs (and certainly the economic ones) require some kind of skilled work experience or a viable business venture. Thus, getting a Work Permit is a natural first step.


The lucky bunch who got a Study Permit and undertook Canadian education is eligible for a post-graduate work permit that lasts for three years. However, this option is not open to those without Canadian education.


Thus, this article will walk you through other options for starting the first step to your economic immigration journey, which usually involves getting a Work Permit.


Employer-Sponsored, LMIA required

The most common alternative is then to get a Work Permit through an employer sponsor. The biggest difficulty is to convince the employer to participate in the Labour Market Impact Assessment (“LMIA”). Simply put, the employer must show genuine effort in trying to hire local talents (Canadian permanent residents/citizens). The employer must demonstrate this genuine effort and remain convinced that the foreign national is the best candidate for the job.


When delivering the application, all evidence pertaining to this genuine effort must be included such as advertisements placed to hire local candidates. Varity Law is experienced and will assist the employer through the entire process, but their co-operation is still required.


Owner/Operator LMIA

A more suitable option for entrepreneurs is the Owner/Operator stream. In this case, since the foreign national is considered a business owner and not an employee, there is no need to show genuine effort to hire local talents (legal jargon is “advertisement and recruitment exempt”).


To be considered a business owner, the foreign national must own at least 50.1% of the company shares, and show that the business can create or retain jobs for Canadian permanent residents and/or citizens. Many internal business documents, from share ledgers and shareholder agreements to business plan and financial statements, act as strong evidence for sufficient ownership and business vitality.


As Varity Law is well versed in corporate & commercial law, and have partnered with other professionals such as accountants and business development organizations, we can guide you through this process using a one stop shop approach.


Intra-Company Transfer

Many international agreements allow for fast transfers of talented executives to Canada. One example is Intra-Company Transfer, which enables a foreign national to be transferred from a company in a foreign country (“foreign company”) to a company in Canada (“Canadian company”), as long as the two companies have either a parent-subsidiary or a branch/affiliate relationship.


To qualify, the foreign national must have been employed by the foreign company for at least one year out of the most recent three years. Also, the foreign national must fulfill either a executive/senior manager role or a specialized knowledge worker role in the Canadian company. Of course, the Canadian company must show good viability. Again, Varity Law’s expertise in corporate/commercial law would greatly assist with this process.


“On-Demand” Occupations

There are always occupations that are highly in demand by the Canadian economy at certain points in time. There are many immigration programs designed to attract foreign talents in those fields. Those programs tend to have looser requirements and much faster processing time.


The Global Talent Stream LMIA introduced in June 2017 is such a program, and their on-demand occupations include many positions in the software and information technology industry. In those programs, demonstrating knowledge transfer from the foreign national to local talents is key. Many provincial nominee programs also have a on demand occupation stream.

Business Visitor                

There is another way to begin the economic immigration journey without a work permit, and that is to obtain visitor status as a business person.


This option is ideal for entrepreneurs and business owners. Also, it will be considered a favourable factor when later applying for provincial nominee programs or other economic programs, as it demonstrates genuine business interest in Canada. The main requirement for this application is an invitation letter from the foreign national’s potential business partner in Canada. With a business visitor status, usually the foreign national would be able to remain in Canada for 6 months.


Conclusion and Next Blog

Obtaining a Work Permit or a valid Business Visitor status is the natural first step to obtaining Permanent Residency Status through various economic programs. With that said, there are a few other programs that allow a foreign national to obtain PR status in a one step manner, such as family sponsorship.


Now that you have your Work Permit, how do you get your permanent residency status? Canadian immigration pathways are often on a tight timeline. You do need to start preparing early and act in an efficient manner.  Stay tuned for next time.


Varity Law Pro. Corp. is a business boutique law firm that specializes in Economic Immigration and Private Lending Transactions & Mortgage Enforcement. We also offer real estate purchase/sale closings, corporate/commercial law services, and wills & estates law services in support of our specialization areas. To find out more about us, kindly visit our website at and refer to our handy brochure in our front page.


This article is only meant to give general legal information. For legal advice on your legal situation, please consult a legal professional. 

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