If you are a foreign national who is living and working in Canada and wish to move to the country as a permanent resident, then you should apply for a (BOWP) Bridging Open Work Permit. BOWP allows a foreigner to stay and work in Canada until the time his or her permanent residency application is processed.
BOWP allows the immigrant to keep earning in order to sustain himself while his application for permanent residency is under process. This reduces his financial burden throughout this time-consuming process.
A bridging open work permit can be applied through the IRCC account online. However, offline applications are also accepted, and those applying under Quebec skilled worker class, have to wait until they have passed the complete check of their application.
Eligibility for bridging open work permit
In order to apply for a (BOWP) Bridging Open Work Permit, an applicant must fulfill the following essential criteria:
- He must hold a temporary resident work permit for Canada;
- He must have submitted his work permit for renewal on the date of applying for BOWP;
- The applicant must have applied for Canadian permanent residence under one of the following classes
- Provincial nominee program
- A federal skilled worker program
- Federal skilled trades program
- Canadian experience class
- Quebec skilled workers
- Agri-food pilot program
He or she must have passed section R10 regarding the completeness check for a QSWC application or an express entry application.
BOWP Document checklist
The list of documents required for a (BOWP) Bridging Open Work Permit varies depending upon the kind of work that the person is engaged in, as well as the type of permit that he or she is applying for. For a smooth application process, it is essential that the applicant is equipped with the following documents before proceeding to fill up the form
- Acknowledgement of receipt (AOR) letter
- Employment contract
- Proof of status in Canada
- A latest valid copy of the passport
- Proof of payment of government fees
- Provincial nomination certificate if applicable
- Quebec acceptance certificate if applicable
- Marriage certificate if applicable
- Medical examination results if requested
The authorities charge a total application fee of $255 CAD for processing (BOWP) Bridging Open Work Permit in Canada. This includes $155 CAD processing fees and a $100 CAD open work permit holder fee.
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Bridging open work permit (BOWP) validity
In normal cases, the bridging open work permit is issued for a period of 24 months. However, in exceptional circumstances, if the processing time of the permanent residency application extends beyond this, a further extension of 12 months can be provided by appropriate authorities.
However, in any case, the validity of the BOWP shall not extend beyond the validity of the immigrant’s passport.
Lastly, a BOWP comes with immense flexibility. It allows an immigrant to work at multiple locations within Canada. Besides, it gives him the option to switch between multiple employers.
This makes job search and retention very easy since the list of prospective employers for the applicant is not limited to those willing to apply for LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment).
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