• Monday, May 27, 2024
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22 ways to work legally in Canada without a permit in 2024

22 ways to work legally in Canada without a permit in 2024

Canada’s appeal as a land of opportunities extends far beyond its stunning landscapes. For those seeking legal employment in the country without the burden of acquiring a work permit, numerous avenues offer promising job prospects.

However, while these pathways provide opportunities for legal employment in Canada without a work permit, it’s crucial to adhere to immigration laws and regulations. Individuals should thoroughly examine eligibility criteria and consider seeking legal guidance to navigate the intricacies of working in Canada.

Here are 22 ways you can work legally in Canada without a permit in 2024, According to BusinessDay findings.

Business Visitors

They engage in business activities in Canada without joining the local job market. No Canadian pay is received, only international business transactions. Employment must be with a foreign company, with primary income and workplace outside Canada. Proof of business visitor status, such as a support or invitation letter, may be required upon entry.

Foreign Representatives & Family

Accreditation from Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT) is required for representatives. A “No Objection Letter” from DFAIT enables family members to work.

Read also: Japa: 3 common myth about immigrating to Canada

Military Personnel

This encompasses military and civilian personnel in Canada under the Visiting Forces Act, with families also eligible for benefits. Exemptions cover passports, temporary resident visas, and medical exams, which may still be required for civilians and their families.

Foreign Government Officers

Canada has reciprocal agreements with other nations for government employee exchanges. Executives must procure a contract from Canada’s Public Service Commission (PSC), while others require a formal letter of agreement for assignments exceeding 3 months. Family members may receive benefits such as an open work permit or exemption.

American Cross-Border Law Enforcement

This pertains to designated law enforcement vessels with joint US-Canada crews. American crew members are permitted to work in Canada without needing a work permit.

Read also: Canada’s Ontario increases permanent residency allocations to 21,500

In-Flight Security Officers (IFSOs)

IFSOs (International Field Service Officers) employed by a foreign government for aircraft safety are exempt from needing a work permit as long as their duties are restricted to foreign aircraft. However, a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) may be necessary depending on the IFSO’s country of origin.

On-Campus Employment (Students)

Students holding a valid study permit and enrolled full-time at a recognized institution are permitted to work on campus. Eligible institutions include public post-secondary schools, CEGEPs, authorized private colleges in Quebec, and Canadian private institutions granting degrees. Students may work throughout the validity of their study permit if they maintain full-time enrollment. Research or teaching assistants, considered on-campus employees, must receive recommendations from their academic department and have their work supervised by a department head or faculty member at a research institute or affiliated program. Additionally, the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) allows for full-time employment while awaiting the permit’s issuance provided the study permit remains valid.

Performing Artists

Certain performers are exempt from needing a work permit, while others may require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and work permit. Performers allowed entry without a permit by IRCC include bands performing in bars, pubs, and restaurants, foreign-based musical and theatrical individuals and crews outside such venues, guest artists collaborating with Canadian performance groups for a limited duration, and performers at private events such as weddings. Other categories not mandating a permit include film producers and users of film/recording studios (as business visitors), and guest speakers on Canadian television or radio broadcasts, among others.

Read also: Canada hastens to halt international student work permits ahead of schedule

Athletes and Team Members

This encompasses both professional and amateur athletes, along with their coaches, trainers, and essential team personnel for individual or team events. IRCC permits certain participants to work without a permit, including amateur players on Canadian teams, foreign pet owners entering animals in shows, jockeys, race car drivers, individuals attending professional team tryouts, foreign team members in competitions, grooms, team support members, and full or part-time coaches and trainers. Spouses of professional athletes can obtain a work permit exempt from LMIA requirements.

News Reporters and Media Crews

This pertains to news reporters and crews covering events in Canada while employed by a non-Canadian company. Managerial or clerical personnel may require a work permit unless they are covering special events lasting less than 6 months. Media crews producing travelogues, documentaries, and similar content might need work permits, a decision made by a visa officer.

Public Speakers

This encompasses presenters at events such as guest speakers, commercial speakers, and seminar leaders who do not have a vested interest in the event. If hired by a Canadian entity, they are required to obtain an LMIA and work permit.

Read also: Canada set to reduce intake of temporary residents

Convention Organizers

Individuals organizing events may require a work permit if the event is organized by a Canadian entity. However, conference attendees are classified as business visitors and are therefore exempt from needing work permits.


This applies to ordained ministers, laypeople, or members of a religious order engaged in preaching, conducting religious services, or providing spiritual counseling. Requirements include primary duties aligned with religious objectives and proof of an employment offer demonstrating the capacity to minister. Charitable or religious work mandates a work permit exempt from LMIA.

Judges, Referees, and Similar Officials

This pertains to individuals participating in international amateur events in sports, arts, agriculture, and culture, particularly those organized by an international entity and hosted by a Canadian organization. Professionals, however, are required to obtain an LMIA and work permit.

Read also: Canada to reduce number of international study permit by 35 percent

Examiners and Evaluators

Foreign professors and researchers are permitted to evaluate theses and projects without needing a work permit.

Expert Witnesses and Investigators

Experts entering Canada to conduct surveys, analyses, or provide testimony as evidence are exempt from requiring work permits.

Healthcare Students

Foreign healthcare students are permitted to participate in unpaid clinical clerkships or short-term practicums, limited to a maximum of 4 months, in fields such as medicine, nursing, medical technology, occupational therapy, and physical therapy. However, any paid work or stays exceeding 4 months necessitate a work permit.

Civil Aviation Inspectors

Flight operations and cabin safety inspectors working on commercial international flights, employed by a recognized aeronautical authority and possessing valid documentation, are exempt from the requirement of obtaining work permits.

Read also: Why Canada may soon limit international students’ visa

Aviation Accident/Incident Inspectors

Accredited representatives assisting in investigations under the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act are not required to obtain work permits.

Crew Members

Crew members working on foreign-owned modes of transportation primarily engaged in international transportation are exempt from the requirement of obtaining work permits.

Emergency Service Providers

Canada-US agreements facilitate the entry of workers into Canada for emergency services during natural disasters or commercial accidents.

Maintained Status

Individuals can continue working in Canada under expired work permits while awaiting renewal, provided they remain in the country to maintain their status. Upon receiving a decision, they can continue working under the new permit or choose to depart Canada.