Apply for a Post-Graduate Work Permit Extension Through the PGWP

Canada has announced that people holding Post-Graduation Work Permits whose permits expire between September 20, 2021 and December 31, 2022 may be eligible for a second open work permit.

Tens of thousands of international master's and doctoral students will be able to benefit from this policy by receiving an open work permit (OWP) for an additional 18 months, allowing them to remain in Canada for longer and helping employers find the skilled workers they require.

Canada is taking this extraordinary step to aid in the country's economic revival and post-pandemic expansion. There are tens of thousands of open positions across the country due to a lack of qualified workers in a variety of industries. Canada values and will continue to support the contributions made by international graduates to the country's communities and economy.

Who can participate in this OWP?

If you are an international student whose Post-Graduation Work Permit expires between September 20, 2021, and December 31, 2022, you can apply for an extension of your work permit and stay in Canada for another 18 months. For those already in Canada, the extension or issuance of a new work permit will not prevent them from contributing to the economy.

The Canadian government's immigration, refugee, and citizenship service (IRCC) has provided the following examples of people who may benefit from this short-term policy:

1) My passport is valid through April 2024 and my address is current; my post-graduation work permit is valid from October 2, 2022, to December 31, 2022.

Midway through the month of October, you should receive your work visa. The absence of any action on your part is assumed. It is not necessary for you to reply to the IRCC email requesting confirmation of your mailing address.

2) You need to change your address or passport before my PGWP lapses between October 2 and December 31, 2022.

By the middle of October, IRCC will have sent emails to qualified applicants confirming their mailing address. To notify IRCC of an address change, please respond as directed in the email.

In September, IRCC will email you instructions on how to update your mailing address and passport validity. You have two weeks from the time you receive this email to make the necessary changes to your online profile in order to receive your new work permit in the mail by the end of November.

If your passport is set to expire before April 2, 2024, you may want to apply for an extension. Make sure your paper PGWP application is linked in your online account if you've already applied.

Thirdly, IRCC has not contacted me despite the fact that my PGWP is set to expire between October 2 and December 31 of 2022.

You will not be able to apply for a special extension of your work permit through IRCC if you do not hear from them by mid-September. This may be because new information regarding your admissibility to Canada has been added to your file. For the time being, you can still submit an application to have your work permit extended.

4) I can't change the expiration date or my address on my PGWP, which currently only goes through December 31, 2022.

To renew your work visa, you must submit an online application. You can either apply for a work permit extension before your passport expires, or wait to apply until after you have renewed your passport.

5) Between September 20, 2021 and October 1, 2022, my PGWP was or will be in limbo.

A work permit application must be submitted online. Submissions will begin on August 2, 2022. If your temporary resident status in Canada has also expired, you must apply to reinstate it at the same time. If your status expired more than 90 days ago, you can reinstate it thanks to these exceptional measures.

While I wait for my OWP, am I able to work?

Those whose PGWPs have expired or will expire between September 21 and December 31, 2022, will receive an email from IRCC on August 8, 2022, letting them know that they can continue working temporarily until their new PGWPs are issued. This notice can be attached to the PGWP to prove to employers that the recipient is authorized to work in Canada temporarily. PGWP holders who qualify will have their work authorization extended for 18 months while they reapply for a new permit. The permit will be invalid after May 31, 2023.

However, the email cannot be used as a sole means of re-entry into Canada for those who hold valid temporary resident visas but are currently outside the country.

Those who have applied for permanent residency through the temporary resident to permanent resident (TR to PR) pathway but have not yet received a final decision are eligible to apply for an open work permit. While waiting for their permanent residence application to be finalized, this safeguards both their status and their employment.  

Due to the fact that IRCC expects to be processing TR to PR applications for some time to come, applicants for an OWP will now be issued one that is valid until December 31, 2024, so long as their passport is valid until then. A candidate will not be able to extend their current work permit under the special measure if their passport expires before that time. However, they can still apply for a longer work permit to coincide with the date their passport expires, or they can apply after they have renewed their passport.

As of the end of 2018, roughly 2,500 people had applied for and been granted a permanent resident card in the form of a work permit under this program. IRCC will notify these people via email soon that they can renew their work permits. Any further action or response is unnecessary if the applicant has not changed their mailing address and still possesses a valid passport. Those who have moved and need to change their address or those who refuse to receive a new one through this method will no longer be eligible for the bonus. Online applications are required.

Some Additional Information Regarding the Open Work Permit Extension

Canada remains a welcoming place for anyone who wants to start a new chapter of their life there. Canada's government has changed its policies several times over the past few years in response to the pandemic, helping thousands of international students and newcomers. Minister of Immigration Sean Fraser announced in April 2022 that PGWP holders would be able to renew their work permits after their current ones expired.

PGWPs are typically granted for a set amount of time and cannot be renewed once they have expired. Graduates of qualifying full-time international student programs may be eligible for a three-year open work permit. Given the widespread effects of the pandemic on the academic community and, in recent years, on groups of international students, So that these students have a chance to gain work experience and eventually qualify for immigration programs leading to permanent residence, the Canadian government has enacted special policies.  

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