There are seven different LMIA programs. It’s important to choose the right type of LMIA application since it’s your key to success. The list of the available programs is as follows:

  • High-Wage Stream
  • Low-Wage Stream
  • Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program
  • Agricultural Stream
  • LMIA to Support a Permanent Residency Visa Application
  • Global Talent Stream
  • LMIA for In-Home Caregivers

General LMIA Applications

High-wage and low-wage programs fall into the so-called ‘general applications’ category. These two programs are not tied to any specific industry, and the only difference is the salary level of the foreign worker: if the hourly wage is higher or equal than the provincial median wage, then it’s a high-wage professional. If it’s below the provincial median, it automatically falls into the low-wage stream.

Paperwork for a High-Wage Stream LMIA

You must complete the paperwork and submit it along with proof of payment to the appropriate Service Canada Processing Centre. The following documents should be submitted:

  • Labour Market Impact Assessment application form for high-wage positions (EMP5626)
  • proof of business legitimacy
  • proof of recruitment

Paperwork for a Low-Wage Stream LMIA

You must fill out, sign and submit along with proof of payment the following documents:

  • Labour Market Impact Assessment application form for low-wage positions (EMP5627)
  • proof of business legitimacy
  • proof of recruitment
  • Employment Contract (PDF 37.1 KB)

High-Wage vs. Low-Wage Stream

Difference between a high-wage and a low-wage stream is the worker’s salary. If the employer will pay more than the median hourly wage in the province, then a high-wage stream should be selected. Conversely, if your worker’s salary is below the median hourly wage, a low-wage program should be selected.

How is Median Hourly Wage Determined?

Median hourly wages are published by Statistics Canada. Here are the median hourly wages across Canadian provinces & territories in 2022:

Median hourly wages by Province or Territory
Province/TerritoryMedian hourly wages prior to April 30, 2022Median hourly wages as of April 30, 2022
British Columbia$25.00$26.44
New Brunswick$20.12$21.79
Newfoundland and Labrador$23.00$24.29
Northwest Territories$34.36$37.30
Nova Scotia$20.00$22.00
Prince Edward Island$20.00$21.63

Agricultural LMIA Applications

There are two programs that fall into this category: seasonal agricultural worker program and the agricultural stream. Let’s take a closer look at them.

Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program

The seasonal agricultural worker is an 8-9 month program designed for citizens of Latin America and the Caribbean. Under this program, citizens of certain Latin American countries (see the full list below) can come to Canada as seasonal workers and work on farms within specific commodity sectors (see the national commodity list):

  • Mexico
  • Anguilla
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Barbados
  • Dominica
  • Grenada
  • Jamaica
  • Montserrat
  • St. Kitts-Nevis
  • St. Lucia
  • St. Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago

Seasonal Agricultural Program Requirements

To qualify under the Seasonal Agricultural Program, temporary foreign workers must meet the following requirements:

  • Have experience in farming
  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Be a citizen of one of the participating countries
  • Must meet Canadian immigration laws and the worker’s laws in the workers country.

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Agricultural Stream

As the name of the program suggests, this Agricultural Steam has been created for workers who want to work in the Agricultural sector and are foreign nationals of countries that are not covered by the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program.

To receive LMIA under this stream, employers must meet the following requirements:

  • production must be in specific commodity sectors (see the list here), and
  • the activity must be related to on-farm primary agriculture

Under the agricultural stream, employers must submit the following documents along with proof of payment:

  • LMIA Application form (EMP5519)
  • Employment contract (EMP5510)
  • Proof of business legitimacy
  • Proof of advertisement, applicable in most cases
  • Copy of signed off-site housing contract, if applicable
  • Housing inspection report

Difference between the Seasonal Agricultural Program and Agricultural Stream

There are two major differences between these two programs:

  1. Duration of the work permit. SAP has the standard duration of 8 months (maximum 9 months), with contracts starting from January first to December 15. In contrast, the AS has the standard duration of 2 years (3 years for high-wage programs).
  2. Country eligibility. SAP covers 12 countries, including Mexico and 11 countries of the Caribbean, whereas the Agricultural stream is open to workers worldwide.

National commodity list

The list below enumerates the exact commodity sectors where both Agricultural programs apply. If you work in any of the below sectors, you should choose one of the Agricultural streams:

  • Apiary products
  • Fruits, vegetables (including canning/processing of these products if grown on the farm)
  • Mushrooms
  • Flowers
  • Nursery-grown trees including Christmas trees, greenhouses/nurseries
  • Pedigreed canola seed
  • Seed corn
  • Grains
  • Oil seeds
  • Maple syrup
  • Sod
  • Tobacco
  • Bovine
  • Dairy
  • Duck
  • Horse
  • Mink
  • Poultry
  • Sheep
  • Swine

Need help with LMIA-related paperwork?

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LMIA to support Permanent Residence

This program is intended for higher-skilled specialists who can apply for dual-purpose LMIA. Such LMIA includes a permanent resident visa and a temporary work permit.

Under this LMIA stream, employers will be able to hire applicants while waiting for their PR application to be processed by IRCC under Express Entry.

This type of LMIA can be obtained under one of three programs:

  • Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
  • Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
  • Canadian Experience Class

If a positive LMIA is issued, it adds 200 points for an offer in a NOC 00 Job, and 50 points for employment in NOC 0, A or B job.

The dual LMIA program is designed for professionals in the following fields: management, professional, scientific, technical or trade occupations (National Occupational Classification (NOC), skill type 0, and skill levels A and B).

In addition to the above, the term of employment under this stream should be at least one year.

The application form for this stream can be found here

Global Talent Stream

The Global Talent Stream is designed to help Canadian innovative businesses advance by hiring top worldwide talent. The main advantage of this program is that work permits are issued within 2 weeks within application.

To apply for LMIA under the Global Talent Stream, the company must:

  • Operate in Canada
  • Be focused on Innovation
  • Must show its willingness and capability to grow and scale
  • Seek to fill a unique and specialised position within the company
  • Have identified a unique and skilled foreign worker to fill a position

Global Talent Occupations List as of 2019

  • Computer and information systems managers
  • Computer engineers (except software engineers and designers)
  • Mathematicians and statisticians
  • Information systems analysts and consultants
  • Database analysts and data administrators
  • Software engineers and designers
  • Computer programmers and interactive media developers
  • Web designers and developers
  • Computer network technicians
  • Information systems testing technicians
  • Producer, technical, creative and artistic director and project manager – Visual effects and video game

Need help with PR-related paperwork?

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LMIA for In-Home Caregivers

Whenever Canadian permanent residents and citizens are unavailable to fill the vacancy, households can hire foreign nationals to look after children, senior citizens or persons with special needs.

Such caregivers must meet the following requirements:

  • Be employed on a full-time basis (at least 30 hours per week)
  • Work in a private household where care is being provided
  • Meet the requirements of ESDC and IRCC

Under this LMIA stream, employers can apply if they are looking to hire professionals under one of the following job codes:

  • child care provider, live-in caregiver, nanny (NOC 4411)
  • registered nurse or registered psychiatric nurse (NOC 3012)
  • licensed practical nurse (NOC 3233)
  • attendant for persons with disabilities, home support worker, live-in caregiver, personal care attendant (NOC 4412)

The application for this form can be found here.