Process, Place, and Cost

Process, Place, and Cost to Obtain Immigration Documentation


Most academic visitors will need a work permit from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to work in Canada temporarily. A work permit may be required even if the visitor is not paid.

Will the visitor require a work permit?

Academic visitors described in the categories above do not require a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from Service Canada/ESDC. They are LMIA exempt. They do, however, require confirmation that Queen's has made a submission on their behalf to the IRCC Employer Portal. The hosting department must also pay the Employer Compliance Fee of $230. The portal submission results in an Offer of Employment Number (LMIA exemption), which is provided to the prospective visitor to make their visa and/or work permit application.

Where to apply:

Depending on their citizenship, visitors will need a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) or an Electronic Travel Authorization (ETA) in order to enter Canada. Visitors must determine what the requirement is for their particular situation prior to planning their travel. TRV required visitors will have longer processing times.

Applying at the border (only for TRV exempt visitors):

If the following requirements are met, academic visitors can apply for a work permit upon entering Canada at a "port of entry" (an airport, sea port or land border)

  • they are citizens of a country that is Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) exempt
  • they do not need an immigration medical, or have done their medical ahead of entering Canada and have received the results.
  • they have a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) or are LMIA exempt and have an Offer of Employment Number. The academic visitor categories described on this page are LMIA exempt and require an Offer of Employment Number.

Find more information on the application process upon entry.

NOTE: If you have applied online (even if eligible to apply at the border) and you later decide to apply at the border, you can only enter Canada and obtain a work permit once the online process has been completed.

Applying online prior to traveling to Canada:

Academic visitors who do not meet the conditions to apply for a work permit at a port of entry must apply through IRCC's online application system. All citizens of countries who are required to have a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) must apply through the online system.

The work permit (if required) and the Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) are issued at the same time.

Find for more information on the online application process from outside Canada.

For all applications:

The actual work permit document is always issued at the border immigration office.The online process results in a Port of Entry Letter of Introduction, which you must show to the officer at the airport/land border immigration office. The officer makes the final decision on issuing your work permit. Be sure to check the work permit carefully for any errors (spelling, content) prior to leaving the border immigration office.


  • For most current fees
  • Payment options at Port of Entry: cash, money order (Canadian funds, payable to "Receiver General"), Visa, MasterCard or certified cheque.
  • There is no additional fee for the TRV when a work permit is requested.