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Foreign nationals are only eligible to enter Canada if they are fully vaccinated with one of the vaccines approved for entry into Canada.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the process for inviting a research professional has changed. Please read the updated procedure (French only) and the COVID-19 page for foreign workers and interns.

If you are a professor at Université Laval and would like to invite a foreign worker, please follow the instructions on the VREDIRH intranet.

Have you been invited to Université Laval as a research professional?

Canadian immigration considers you to be a foreign worker.

To be invited, you must be eligible for a status at Université Laval and hold an authorization to work from Canadian immigration. If you have an open work permit or are eligible for one, such as a post-graduation work permit, notify the person inviting you.

Foreign workers are responsible for their immigration procedures, for respecting the conditions of their invitation and Canadian work authorization, and for extending their Canadian work permit if necessary. If their working conditions change, a new invitation letter and work permit may be required.

Eligibility and invitation

You must have been recruited in accordance with the collective agreement between Université Laval and the Syndicat des professionnelles et professionnels de recherche de l’Université Laval (union).

Immigration procedures before you are invited

Generally, work permits are based on a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and a Quebec Acceptance Certificate (Certificat d’acceptation du Québec, CAQ).

In some cases, research professionals can be exempt from the LMIA process. This simplifies work permit applications and shortens processing times. LMIA exemptions are listed in the “Immigration procedure” section below. Note that individuals with LMIA exemptions are also exempt from the CAQ.

If you are not exempt from the LMIA, you must check whether the inviting professor can apply for an LMIA and a CAQ for you. If so, the instructions below, with a few adjustments, will apply.

Valid passport

You must have a passport that will be valid more than three months after the end of your stay. The dates of your stay and your immigration documents cannot extend beyond your passport’s expiry date.

Processing times

Start the procedure as early as 6 months in advance  to allow sufficient time for immigration processing.

If applicable, add up to 4 months for the LMIA and CAQ procedures.

Invitation letter

  • For an LMIA-exempt work permit

You will need an invitation letter for your stay. The letter will include an LMIA-exempt job offer number and a description of your working conditions. This letter is essential for your immigration procedures and your entry into Canada.

  • For an LMIA- and CAQ-based work permit

The LMIA and CAQ are required. You will receive an invitation letter.

Immigration procedure (LMIA exemption)

Research professionals must apply for a work permit.

They are exempt from the LMIA if they meet all the criteria for one of the following exemptions:

- A75: They reside in Quebec, have a valid work permit and a valid Quebec selection certificate (Certificat de sélection du Québec, CSQ)* or They are awaiting the results of a permanent residence application that was based on an initially valid CSQ*. (Work permits are valid for a maximum period of 24 months, depending on the applicant’s situation.)

* Their CSQ is for one of these categories: “IQ – Travailleurs qualifiés,” “IP – Travailleurs,” “IT – Travailleurs qualifiés,” “IZ – PEQ Travailleurs,” “IY – PEQ Étudiants” or “I6 Travailleurs Art. 40.”

- C21: They are eligible for International Experience Canada’s program for young professionals. The age requirement for and duration of the program (12 to 24 months) depend on the country of citizenship**. They must also have a postsecondary diploma in the field of work.

**Citizenship, age and duration of the program for IEC’s Young Professionals program (on October 19, 2021)

Age Country (and duration in months)
18 to 29 Mexico (12)
18 to 30 Austria (12), Luxembourg (12), Norway (12), Spain (12) and Sweden (12)
18 to 35

Australia (12), Chile (12), Costa Rica (12), Croatia (12), Czech Republic (12), Estonia (12), France (24), Germany (12), Greece (12), Ireland (24), Latvia (Republic of – 12), Lithuania (12), Netherlands (12), Poland (12), Portugal (24), Slovakia (12), Slovenia (12), Switzerland (18), Taiwan (12) and Ukraine (12).

- T23: They are American, Mexican or Chilean citizens who have at least a bachelor degree (maximum initial duration of work permit: 3 years).

- For more options, you can email the faculty contact person for immigration (PDF in French only).

What you must do next if you are exempt from the LMIA process:

Step 1. Undergo the Canadian immigration medical exam (if required)

Step 2. Obtain permission from a professional order (if required)

Step 3. Apply for a work permit based on your LMIA exemption:

If you are unsure, contact the faculty contact person for immigration (PDF in French only).

Immigration procedures if you have an LMIA and a CAQ

Once you have obtained your LMIA and CAQ, you must:

Step 1. Undergo the Canadian immigration medical exam (if required)

Step 2. Obtain permission from a professional order (if required)

Step 3. Apply for a work permit with your LMIA: send an email to for instructions.

In the event of a refusal

It may happen that a work permit or visa application is refused. Should this occur, you can contact the faculty contact person at Université Laval (PDF in French only): this person will assess your file with an immigration counsellor.

If you are advised to file a new application for a work permit, be sure to obtain a new invitation letter with a new LMIA-exempt job offer number.

Plane ticket

Important: If you require a visa and/or a work permit, you must wait until you receive your visa and/or approval for your work permit as well as all the documents required for entering Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic before you book your flight.

In all cases, wait until you have all the documents necessary for entry into Canada (see the list in the “Going through Canadian customs” section as well as the documents required for entering Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic) before booking your flight, making your travel arrangements and coming to Canada.

If necessary for administrative purposes, arrive a few days before the start of your stay at Université Laval.

Arrangements for your stay

For suggestions on accommodation and practical tips for your stay, see the Living in Québec City  section for International Students on the Student Life Office (Bureau de la vie étudiante - BVE) webpage. Even though you don’t have access to BVE services as a foreign worker, some of the information will be useful.

Going through Canadian customs

The following does not apply to the exemption A-75 as applicants are already in Québec. They will receive their new work permit by mail.

IMPORTANT: In addition to the documents required for your situation (work permit exemption or work permit), you must provide all documents related to the COVID-19 pandemic, listed in the procedure (French only) and on this page.

You will go through customs at the first Canadian airport you arrive at.

Please note that you should keep the following documents with you rather than in your checked baggage:

  • A valid passport
  • A valid electronic travel authorization or visa
  • A letter approving your work permit: follow the instructions on it and show it to the customs officer so they can print out your work permit
  • Your invitation letter with the host professor’s phone number
  • If applicable, proof that you meet the criteria for the LMIA exemption you used (e.g., your CSQ, International Experience Canada’s invitation letter, extract from the free trade agreement between your country and Canada (ask
  • If applicable, your LMIA and CAQ
  • A copy of your CV
  • Copies of any required diplomas
  • If required, proof that you have passed a medical exam
  • If required, permission from a professional order
  • Any other document Canadian immigration might require before entering Canada, according to the following requirements:

The customs officer has the final say on your entry to Canada. If everything is in order, the officer will issue your work permit. Before leaving customs, check that all the information on your work permit is accurate, including your identity, employer (Université Laval), the city (Québec City), the status under which you were invited (visiting professor or researcher, postdoctoral or medical fellow, training or research intern, research professional or other), the expiry date (same length as the invitation unless your passport expires first), the LMIA-exempt job offer number and the conditions listed (e.g., if you have taken the medical exam, there should be no restrictions on working with patients, children, or the elderly). A mistake in any of this information could prevent you from working in Canada for several weeks and it’s much easier to correct any errors directly at customs.

Social insurance number (SIN)

You must have a social insurance number (SIN) to receive a salary or scholarship (grant) from Université Laval or another Canadian employer.

You can go to the nearest Service Canada office to request a SIN (once you have completed your mandatory quarantine, if required). To do so, you must make an appointment online first and bring your passport and original work permit.

Health and hospitalization insurance

Research professionals who are invited for 6 months or more are generally eligible for coverage under the Québec health insurance plan and must register for it.

Barring exceptions, they will qualify after a maximum waiting period of 3 months after registering. During this time, they are required to take out private health and hospitalization insurance at their own expense.

Once they are eligible for RAMQ coverage, they and their family will also be eligible for the employer’s supplementary insurance.

Family members accompanying a research professional to Canada must also have adequate Canadian health insurance coverage. If they do not have such coverage, they must take out private health and hospitalization insurance at their own expense.

Depending on your personal or family needs, take out supplementary private insurance that best suits your situation.

Arrival at Université Laval

Research professionals must submit their immigration documents and SIN to their unit, so they can start the contract.

Extending your work permit

If necessary and possible, extend your work permit.

Permanent residence

Some research professionals can apply for permanent residence.

For more information

Depending on where you are, you can refer to the following resources:

Outside Canada:

Inside Canada:

If necessary, you can submit your question to the faculty contact person at Université Laval. (PDF in French only)

This website is intended to provide general information on current procedures, which may change at any time without notice. Québec and Canada laws and regulations in effect as well as the websites of the Ministère de l'Immigration, de la Francisation et de l'Inclusion (MIFI) and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) take precedence over this website.

This page was last updated on: 2022-05-26