Canada Announces New Policy to Help Former International Students

Monday, January 11, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented many challenges for international students. Most notably, for many holders of a post-graduation work permit (PGWP), the pandemic’s disruption and uncertainty have limited their chances of obtaining the work experience they need to apply for permanent residence.

Foreign nationals in Canada affected by the pandemic with an expired or expiring PGWP will have an opportunity to apply for another open work permit. These will be valid for 18 months and allow former international students to remain in Canada, continue to seek employment and build their future in Canada.

To apply for an open work permit under the public policy, an applicant must:

  • have a PGWP that expired on or after January 30, 2020, or a PGWP that expires in 4 months or less from the date they apply
  • still be in Canada
  • have a valid temporary status, or be applying to restore their status

Applications will be open from January 27 to July 27, 2021.

Details on how to apply will be added to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s website on January 27, 2021.