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Temporary Residence


Every year Canada opens its doors to millions of visitors who come to travel, work and study here temporarily. Unless they come from visa-exempt countries, these individuals enter as holders of a Temporary Resident Visa.


Once a TRV has been obtained, the visitor will then have to seek to be admitted at a Port of Entry. To do so, they must demonstrate to the CIC Officer that the purpose of their visit to Canada is of a temporary nature. CIC Officers will deny admission to anyone who, in their opinion, does not intend to leave Canada at the expiry of their visitor status.


Tourists are generally admitted for six months, while temporary foreign workers and international students are admitted for varying periods of time. TRVs may be issued for single entry or multiple entry.


Work Permit


Most people who come to Canada to work must first have an offer of employment and apply for a work permit before coming to Canada to work.  There are three categories of temporary work:

  • No work permit required (for example: some business visitors, athletes, performing artists, public speakers or news reporters);
  • Work permit required but no Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) required (for example: intra-corporate transferees, NAFTA workers, and PNP certificate holders); and
  • Work permit and Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) both required. Most forms of employment fall under the third category and require both a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and a work permit before the individual can seek entry into Canada. 


Each category has its own requirements so it is important to determine ahead of time which category you full under and how to apply in that category. 


Temporary Resident Permit


If you have been denied temporary entry into Canada on medical or criminal grounds, or because you do not otherwise comply with the Act or Regulations, you may apply for a Temporary Resident’s Permit (formerly known as a “Minister’s Permit”). Foreign nationals may be found inadmissible if they have committed, been charged with, or convicted of a crime – including the offence of driving under the influence.


The Minister only grants these permits in deserving cases. Compelling reasons for which the Minister may grant a permit include, but are not limited to:

  • entry for business, trade or investment purposes;
  • entry to see family members who are ill;
  • entry for emergency purposes; or
  • entry for leisure purposes, in some circumstances.


When applying for a TRP, you must demonstrate that you are unlikely to pose a threat or risk to Canadian society. All applications are decided by visa officers on a discretionary basis and it is important to submit a strong TRP application with relevant supporting documents. There are different ways to submit a TRP application and you should consult with an immigration lawyer before submitting your application.


If a TRP is granted, once you have been in Canada under the TRP for a certain period, you may apply for permanent residence status from within Canada.