CANADA – COVID-19 – New policy exempting some foreigners without migration status still in Canada from immigration requirements

The process put in place by the government is very recent since it was put in place on 14 July 2020 and will remain in force until 31 December 2020.

It is extremely interesting for foreigners still in Canada because it facilitates almost all the steps that affect them.

We will return point by point to this new government policy and these conditions.


While, without an emergency measure, the reinstatement of status for a foreigner in Canada must be applied to Canadian Immigration within 90 days of its loss of status (worker, visitor or student), this new policy allows foreigners in this case to remain until December 31, 2020.

Temporary residents of Canada who have had their work, study or residence permits expire after January 30, 2020 will be able to restore their status until December 31, 2020.

In other words, from the time you were in the territory to January 30, 2020, you can stay in Canada until December 31 legally.

For this, there are several conditions to be met:

  • Having been in good standing with immigration status until at least January 30, 2020;
  • have not left Canada since this loss of status; And
  • to actually request a re-establishment of its status online (having paid the fees related to this application).

NB – this measure does not allow you to continue working without pairing it with a Provisional Work Authorization.


If the extension of the re-establishment of status is open to all foreigners in the territory as of 30 January 2020, the possibility of working is granted only to persons who previously had worker status.

They will be able to obtain a Provisional Authorization for Work until the administration decides on their new application.

To do so, the foreigner must meet all the following criteria:

  • have applied for an employer-related work permit on the day of the Application for provisional Work Authorization – not received a response;
  • Have included an application for reinstatement of status in the work permit application;
  • Have held a valid work permit within 12 months of applying for reinstatement;
  • intend to work effectively for the employer and in the profession stipulated in the job offer submitted; 
  • have applied for the exemption under this policy introduced on July 14, 2020 (IRCC’s web form) in order to obtain its Provisional Work Authorization.

Thus, if all the previous conditions are met, then the foreigner will receive, within 10 working days, in a dematerialized manner on his email address, an immigration response as to his Provisional Work Authorization.

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