A positive LMIA is required by the foreign nationals looking to work in Canada.

A Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) is a document issued by the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) which confirms that the job in question couldn’t be filled by a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident, therefore, arising the demand to hire a foreign national.

LMIA application should demonstrate the following: –

  • The employer has made sufficient efforts to recruit Canadian citizens/permanent residents.
  • Wages offered by the position are in accordance with the prevailing median wage rate paid to Canadian/permanent residents in the same occupation in the region.
  • Working conditions are consistent with the provincial labour market standards.
  • Enlist the potential benefits like the creation of new jobs or the transfer of skills and knowledge that hiring a foreign national might bring to the Canadian Labor Market.
  • A transition plan demonstrating the employer’s intention to reduce reliance on temporary foreign workers over a period of time.

Types of LMIA

  • Low-wage LMIA
  • High-wage LMIA
  • Agricultural workers LMIA
  • Seasonal agricultural workers LMIA
  • LMIA to support a permanent residence (PR) application.
  • Dual intent LMIA
  • LMIA for Global Talent Stream
  • LMIA for in-home caregivers

Labor Market Impact Assessment processing time

The processing time for a Labor Market Impact Assessment depends upon the category in which the targeted employee is classified. The standard processing time for a Labor Market Impact Assessment approval is three to four months. However, ESDC has identified some categories of Labor Market Impact Assessment applications that may be processed within 10 business days. Those categories are: –

  • LMIA application for the highest demand occupation i.e skilled traders.
  • Highest paid (top 10%) occupation, or
  • Short-term work periods (120 days or less)

Once a positive Labor Market Impact Assessment is issued, the applicant must apply for the work permit within 6 months. If expired, a new Labor Market Impact Assessment needs to be applied.

LMIA and Express Entry

A positive Labor Market Impact Assessment is also one of the most useful tools for meeting the criteria under the Federal skilled worker stream of the Canadian Express Entry Program. It helps in improving the Comprehensive score rating CRS by 200 points for a potential foreign employee under NOC00 and will add up to 50 points in NOC’s O, A or B category.

Additional Requirements

  • Advertising of all job vacancies across the Canadian job market for at least four weeks is mandatory, prior to submitting a Labour Market Impact Assessment application. Further, the job bank website of the employer has to prove that they used at least two other recruitment methods to target potential employees. Advertisements should be inclusive of the underrepresented groups of Canadians. (e.g, Disabled people, aboriginal, youth)
  • The employer needs to submit a detailed record of the recruitment process; a list of Canadian candidates who applied; the ones that were interviewed and the reason for them not qualifying for the job.
  • The employer must pay a Labor Market Impact Assessment processing fee of CDN $1000.
  • For the purpose of LMIA applicants, English and French are the only two languages eligible to be listed as employment requirements.
  • Canadian employer also needs to ascertain that they will prohibit laying off or reducing the hours of Canadian workers in the wake of employing temporary foreign labour.


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