Government of Canada extents Open Work Permit Pilot Program

Posted on December 18, 2017

For the sponsored spouses and common-law partners applying for a Canadian permanent residency, the government of Canada has once again extended the Open Work Permit Pilot program. This announcement has come through an update issued by IRCC on December 15, 2017. As per the update, the pilot program under the Spouse or Common Law Partner in Canada (SCLPC) Class has extended till January 31, 2019. “This ensures that applicants are able to work, provide for their families and contribute to the Canadian economy while waiting for their applications to be processed,” IRCC quoted in the similar context.

This is this the third time the program has been extended. The program was launched in 2014 and was last extended on Dec 7, 2016.  In lining the aims behind the continuous extension of this program and the commitment to reunite families, IRCC said IRCC said “Family reunification is a key immigration priority for the Government of Canada. We recognize that when families can live and work together, their integration outcomes are improved.”

Open Work Permit Process- At a glance

The open work permit pilot program is specifically Canadian permanent residents or citizens who want to sponsor their common-law partners or spouses for a permanent living in Canada.  The spouses or common-law partners of the applicants must hold a valid TRV or any other types of visas such as visitor visa, student visas, work visa etc. Another condition is the spouse or common-law partner must be residing at the same address of their sponsor.

Candidates who are submitting a new application under the Open Work Permit Pilot are also required to submit a work permit along with OWPP application. Also, candidates who have submitted their application for PR and have not yet submitted the work permit applicant can do so simultaneously. Similarly, the candidates who have obtained a work permit through the OWPP must also apply for their work permit extension before the end of their current work permit validity.