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  • Writer's pictureCalver Immigration Consulting Inc.

Spousal Open Work Permit for Students

If you’re an international student studying full-time with a valid study permit, your spouse or common-law partner can apply for an open work permit. An open work permit allows your spouse or partner to work on or off-campus full time while you study.

Your spouse/partner does not need a job offer to apply for an open work permit. And, they do not need to work for the same employer the entire time.

How can a student in Canada bring a spouse?

Your spouse/partner can apply for a work permit before or after they arrive in Canada. The work permit will usually be issued for the same length of time as your study permit. For example, if your study permit is issued for 2 years, your spouse’s work permit will likely also be issued for 2 years.

In some cases, Canadian visa offices abroad will process spouse/partner work permit applications at the same time as study permit applications. In this case, you will need to include the additional fee for the work permit and complete the work permit application for your spouse/partner.

Many of our clients opt to come to Canada as visitors first and apply for a work permit after they are in Canada. If your spouse or partner does not require a Temporary Resident Visa, they might be able to apply for a work permit at the border or airport where they enter Canada.

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Visitor Visa to Open Work Permit

If your partner/spouse chooses to apply for a work permit in Canada, they will need to submit an application to change their status. This application form is called Change Conditions, Extend my Stay or Remain in Canada as a Worker [IMM 5710].

When they apply to change their status they will need the following supporting documents:

  • Copy of student's study permit

  • Copy of spouse/partner's study/work permit, visitor record or visa (if applicable)

  • Letter of Enrollment from the Designated Learning Institution (DLI)

  • Copy of marriage certificate or common-law declaration (and official translation, if not in English or French)

  • Proof of funds

  • Copy of spouse/partner's passport (include bio-data page plus any pages with stamps, visas or markings)

Can I invite family members to visit while I study in Canada?

Yes, you can invite a family member to visit you in Canada. It’s important to remember that citizens of certain countries require a valid Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) to enter Canada.

If a family member (such as a parent) requires a Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) and wants to come visit you in Canada temporarily, you can provide documents to assist them with their TRV application. Some of the documents you might provide include:

  • A letter of invitation from you

  • A copy of documents proving your status in Canada (e.g. study permit, post-graduate work permit, etc).

  • A copy of your passport

  • An official enrolment letter from your DLI

  • Proof of your available funds

If they do not need to apply for a visa, they should bring these documents to present at the border, if asked.


Our Services

Calver and Associates is a leading provider of Canadian Immigration services in Durham Region. We serve clients in Oshawa, Whitby, Ajax, and beyond. Our Registered Canadian Immigration Consultant has over 10 years of experience in Canadian Immigration law and over four years of experience serving those in the Oshawa area.

We can provide assistance 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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