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New Amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations

Updated: Nov 28

Employers of Foreign Workers in Canada should understand the new updates and ensure that they are compliant with the new legislation.
 

As a result of recent legislation passed by the IRCC in September 2022, foreign workers will be better protected by setting new workplace conditions and strengthening the ability to hold employers accountable for non-compliance with immigration laws. Employers should be prepared to understand these updates and ensure that they are compliant with the new rules.


The labour shortage in Canada is causing more and more businesses to hire foreign workers to fill job vacancies. Therefore, the IRCC has implemented new amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations that will ensure the integrity of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) and the International Mobility Program (IMP), protect temporary foreign workers, and address some of the technical problems that occur.


An Overview Of The New Enhancements

1. The right to information about Temporary Foreign Worker rights:

The employer must provide the foreign worker with up-to-date information about their rights in Canada. Employers must provide this information to workers on or before the first day of work in their choice of language (English or French, the official languages of Canada).


Information on the rights of temporary foreign workers can be found on Canada.ca:


2. Employment agreement:

Employers who intend to hire temporary foreign workers under the TFWP or IMP must now ensure that, upon submitting a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), they have a signed employment agreement setting out the occupation, wages, and working conditions. Both programs require that the employment agreement match the employment offer. Foreign temporary workers will be able to better understand their wages and the work they will be performing as a result of this.


3. Working conditions, free of abuse:

In the past, employers were required to take reasonable measures to protect temporary foreign workers from abuse in the workplace. The new amendments include a direct reference to "reprisal" as part of the definition of "abuse" in order to address the fear that temporary workers had for reprisal such as demotions, threats of demotions, or dismissals then they need to report the employer for non-compliance.


4. Prohibit Charging/ Recovering of Processing Fees:

Employers are not allowed to charge and recover government processing fees in relation to an LMIA application, the Employer Compliance Fee, and other fees related to recruitment. It is clearly prohibited and employers must ensure that when they make use of recruitment services, they also don’t charge or recover the above-mentioned fees from the foreign worker.


5. Enhanced Health & Safety: Access to health care services & Private Health Insurance:

Employers must take reasonable measures to ensure temporary foreign workers are able to access health care when they become ill or injured at work under the TFWP and the IMP.


This would include the following efforts from the employer:

  • Ensuring that there is a phone available to the temporary foreign workers to call emergency services; or

  • organizing, but not paying for, transportation to a hospital, clinic or doctor.

Employers who hire foreign workers under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) need to obtain and pay for private health insurance that covers emergency medical care before the temporary foreign worker becomes eligible for public health insurance. This requirement is applicable to employers who hire foreign workers through a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA).


6. Document Verification:

In order to verify the employer's compliance with regulatory conditions, including those relating to wages for foreign workers, ESDC and IRCC will be able to require documents from third parties, including banks and payroll companies.


7. Improved Due Diligence for LMIA:

Employers applying for an LMIA will be required to meet program requirements to avoid foreign workers entering an abusive workplace. A new set of requirements will apply to employers who haven't used the TFWP for the past six years.


Have any questions

If you have any questions about the latest amendments and what they mean for you as a temporary foreign worker in Canada, feel free to get in touch! If you think a colleague or friend might find this information beneficial or helpful, you can easily share it with them here.




 

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Calver Immigration Consulting Inc. is rated Canada's number one boutique immigration consultancy. We serve clients across Canada and internationally. Our Registered Canadian Immigration Consultant has over 10 years of experience in Canadian Immigration law and over four years of experience serving those in Canada and abroad.


We can assist with applications for both temporary and permanent residency in Canada. We handle applications for study permits, permanent residency, family class sponsorship, visitor visas, work permits, and Canadian citizenship. We also handle criminal inadmissibility cases by developing remedies for refusal.



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