Hire a temporary worker - Program requirements

2. Program requirements
Processing fee
Employers must pay $1,000 for each position requested to cover the cost of processing a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application.

The processing fee payment (in Canadian dollars) can be made by:

certified cheque (payable to the Receiver General for Canada)
money order (postal or bank)
American Express
There will be no refund in the event of a negative LMIA, or if the application is withdrawn or cancelled by the employer since the fee covers the assessment process and not the outcome. In addition, if a live-in requirement is found during the assessment of the LMIA application, there will be no refund.

Refunds will only be available if a fee was collected in error (for example, an incorrect fee amount was processed).

Employers must be aware that Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), has a policy that prohibits employers and third-party representatives from recovering the LMIA processing fee from temporary foreign workers (TFW).

Language restriction
A distinct language assessment factor has been introduced as subsection 203 (1.01) of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (IRPR). As a result, English and French are the only languages that can be identified as a job requirement both in LMIA applications and in job advertisements by employers, unless they can demonstrate that another language is essential for the job.

Language proficiency
Employers must ensure that the caregiver being hired speaks, reads and understands at least one of Canada's official languages (English or French). Caregivers must have a level of fluency that enables them to communicate effectively and independently in an unsupervised setting.

Education, training or experience
Employers are responsible for ensuring that the TFWs being hired have all the training, qualifications and experience required to successfully and safely perform the job duties of the position for which they are hired. TFWs being hired for:

lower-skilled occupations may require a certain amount of experience, short work demonstrations, on-the-job training, or no formal educational requirements; and
higher-skilled occupations may require a post-secondary education (for example, university degree, college diploma).

Regulated occupations
Employers hiring a TFW in regulated occupations in Canada must ensure that arrangements are made with the appropriate regulatory body for the certification, registration or licensing of the TFW. A "regulated" occupation is one where a professional or regulatory body has the authority to set entry requirements and standards of practice that lead to a certification, registration or licence (for example, doctors, nurses, with compulsory certification).

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will consider whether the TFW has the necessary qualifications to perform the work in Canada before issuing a work permit.

IRCC has established 2 pathways to permanent residency for caregivers, which are:

Caring for children
Caring for people with high medical needs
Each pathway has its own language and education requirements. For detailed information on these requirements, visit IRCC.

Multiple employers
Private household employers can partner with another employer (maximum of 2 official employers), to share the responsibilities of hiring an in-home caregiver. For example, 2 adult children may act as employers of a caregiver for an incapacitated parent. In situations that involve multiple employers, only 1 application is required; however both employers must meet all of the program requirements and sign all documents (for example, Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application, employment contract, bedroom description form (mandatory in the case of a live-in caregiver).

Canada Revenue Agency business number
Individuals hiring a foreign caregiver are considered employers and must obtain a business number (BN) from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to:

meet the initial registration requirements for advertising on the national Job Bank website or its provincial/territorial counterpart
apply for a TFW
pay the worker's wage (including vacation pay)
make deductions from the worker's wage as prescribed by the law and the TFWP
issue pay stubs, statements, remuneration paid (T4) or Records of Employment (ROE)
To obtain a business number
A BN is a 9-digit business identifier that CRA assigns to an employer located in Canada for tax purposes.

Employers can register for a BN by:

Internet: Use the CRA business registration on-line service
Phone: Call the CRA business enquires line at 1-800-959-5525 (toll-free). Before calling, be ready to answer all the questions in the request for a BN Form (RC1).
Mail or fax: Complete the request for a BN Form (RC1) and mail or fax it to the nearest tax services office.
Employers should know that:

Sole proprietors may use an existing BN to hire a foreign caregiver. However, they must employ the caregiver under a domestic account separate from their other business activities.
Other employers cannot use an existing company BN, should they have one, to hire a foreign caregiver. They must obtain a separate BN for the specific purpose of hiring a caregiver.
In instances of multiple employers applying to hire a foreign caregiver, only 1 BN is required.
Businesses outside Canada
Employers in the United States can contact the International Tax Service Office at:
1-800-267-5177 ext. 9144 (toll-free)
Employers from outside Canada and the United States can call collect at:

Financial ability
To hire a foreign in-home caregiver, employers must demonstrate their financial ability to pay the caregiver’s wages. Service Canada will assess the financial ability of the employer by using the Low Income Cut-Offs (LICO) produced by Statistics Canada. To have their financial ability assessed, employers must complete the Financial ability section of the LMIA application form. If the total is positive, the employer may be considered as having met the financial ability requirement.

As part of this assessment, employers must submit a copy of their Notice of Assessment from the CRA with their LMIA application. In exceptional cases where the employer is not required to pay income tax in Canada, copies of paystubs, bank statements, personal work contract or other official documents can be submitted as proof of income.

In cases of multiple employers where the income of 1 employer is not sufficient to meet the financial ability to pay the caregiver’s wages, the income of both employers can be combined to meet this requirement. However, the 2 employers must submit copies of their individual Notice of Assessment from CRA.

Employers of low-wage in-home caregivers must always pay for the transportation costs (for example, plane, train, boat, car, bus) of the caregiver to the work location in Canada. These costs must be paid up-front to ensure that they are not part of any negotiations related to the employment contract. This process helps protect temporary foreign workers, who may be tempted to accept alternative travel arrangements in return for a job offer.

Employers may have a financial agreement with any member of their family to pay for the transportation costs.

Transportation costs may include:

transportation from the caregiver's country of current residence to the work location in Canada
transportation from the caregiver's current residence in Canada to the new work location
gas expenses when the caregiver drives his/her personal car to the new work location
return transportation from the caregiver’s current residence in Canada to his or her original country of residence
Employers should know that:

The mode of transportation selected must reduce the travel time, expenses and inconvenience to the caregiver.
Under no circumstances, can an employer recover the transportation costs from the TFW.
Transportation costs paid by the employer do not include:

hotels, meals and miscellaneous expenses during the caregiver's travel to the work location;
transportation or other expenses for vacations or emergency trips
Employers must keep records (for example, invoices, receipts, copies of flight itineraries, tickets, boarding passes) of all transportation costs paid, for a minimum of 6 years. This information may be required as proof if employers re-apply for a subsequent LMIA or if they are selected for an inspection.

Employers cannot require a caregiver to live in their home. However, if an employer and foreign caregiver decide that a live-in arrangement is the most suitable, for the needs of the person requiring care or to assist the TFW, there are certain criteria that must be met. Specifically, employers must ensure the:

accommodation is being provided in the home of the person receiving care
accommodation is private and furnished bedroom
bedroom door has a lock and safety bolt on the inside
bedroom meets the municipal building requirements and the provincial/territorial health standards
foreign caregiver is not charged room and board for the accommodations, as per the policy, under the TFWP
Employers must complete the Bedroom description section of the LMIA application form.

Employers of low-wage in-home caregivers, who are not providing live-in accommodations, must ensure that suitable and affordable accommodation is available to the TFW. In addition, these employers should be prepared to provide proof (for example, newspaper ads) that affordable housing is available in the community where the TFW will be employed. Meanwhile, employers of high-wage in-home caregivers do not have to meet this requirement.

Health and workplace safety
Health insurance
Employers of low-wage in-home caregivers must always pay for the TFW's private health insurance. Coverage must begin from the time the TFW arrives in Canada until the worker is covered by the appropriate provincial/territorial health insurance plan. The waiting period to be eligible for the provincial/territorial health insurance is available on the Ministry of Health websites for each province or territory. The private insurance coverage provided to the TFW must be similar to the provincial/territorial health insurance plan.

Employment contract
All employers of in-home caregivers must prepare and sign an employment contract. Although employers are not required to use the contract template provided, they must ensure that the contract used, contains all of the mandatory information and clauses. For positions in the province of Quebec, the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclustion (MIDI) has its own requirements concerning the employment contract between an employer and a worker providing in-home care.

In the event that differences arise between the employer and the TFW, the contract will guide the resolution of disputes. In cases where the dispute cannot be resolved between the two parties, the employer or the TFW may contact the Ministry of Labour in the province/territory where the work is being performed.

ESDC/Service Canada has no authority to intervene in the employer-employee relationship or to enforce the terms and conditions of the contract.
Third-party representatives and recruiters
Employers do not need to use the services of a third-party representative or recruiter to apply for a foreign worker. However, employers who choose to use the services of one of these individuals or organizations must pay for all of the fees associated with the service and meet all of the applicable requirements.

Representatives assist employers by providing services, such as:

explaining and providing advice on the TFWP
completing and submitting the application form and all required documents
communicating with ESDC/Service Canada on the employer’s behalf
representing the employer during the application process
Employers who wish to use the services of a third-party representative, paid or unpaid, must complete the appropriate section of the LMIA application form . Employers must identify their representative and not simply the firm/organization employing this person.

Paid representatives
Individuals representing or assisting employers in exchange for compensation (for example, money, goods or services) must be authorized under section 91 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), which means they have to be a member in good standing with:

a Canadian provincial/territorial law society, or a student-at-law under its supervision
the Chambre des notaires du Québec
the Province of Ontario’s law society as a paralegal
the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC)
Employers should visit Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to verify that a specific representative is authorized to represent them or provide immigration advice.

Unpaid representatives
Individuals representing employers for free (for example, do not collect fees or other forms of compensation) are not subject to any restrictions under the IRPA. These individuals are usually family members, non-for-profit or religious organizations that assist employers who may not be able to complete the application process on their own.
Recruiters can assist employers by providing services such as:

placing job advertisements for the recruitment of foreign workers
screening potential employees
making travel arrangements
negotiating wages/salaries on behalf of the employer
Employers, using the services of a paid recruiter to represent them during the LMIA application process, must complete the Third-party Information section of the application form. The paid recruiter representing the employer must be a member of one of the groups authorized under section 91 of the IRPA.

If a paid representative is not authorized under the IRPA, ESDC/Service Canada will continue to process the application, but will communicate with the employer directly. However, a copy of a signed letter stating that the employer is no longer using the services of the original representative will be required before the employer can:

hire another paid authorized representative
work with an unpaid representative
ESDC/Service Canada:

reserves the right to contact employers directly when further information or documentation is required.
will not mediate a dispute between an employer and a third-party representative nor communicate complaints to a regulatory body on an employer’s behalf. Employers who wish to file a formal complaint against their representative should contact the appropriate regulatory body (for example, the provincial law society, the Chambre des notaires du Québec or the ICCR). For additional information on how to file a complaint, visit IRCC.

Valid Power of Attorney
In instances where an employer is seeking to hire a foreign caregiver to provide in-home care to another adult (for example, mother, father, brother, sister, son, daughter, friend), proof is required as part of the LMIA application that the employer has legal authority to make decisions regarding financial and personal care matters on behalf of the recipient of care (in other words, other adult). This proof can be provided in the form of:

a copy of the valid Power of Attorney for financial and personal care decisions; or
an attestation by a lawyer or any other member in good standing with a law society of a province or a notary who is a member in good standing of the Chambre des notaires du Québec or a paralegal, confirming that the employer has Power of Attorney for financial and personal care decisions on behalf of the recipient of care.
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