Canadian Global Talent Stream (GTS)
Lawyers in Vancouver, British Columbia
Let’s face it: finding good employees can be hard, especially in a tight labour market. As a Canadian employer, you’ll of course look to hire your fellow Canadians or permanent residents, but sometimes, even this isn’t enough. If you’re an employer looking to fill roles for a labour shortage, you may be able to go through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) to access workers in the Canadian Global Talent Stream (GTS).
Although this program can provide crucial assistance to companies struggling to find employees, employers must ensure they meet all the requirements and are following the application process to avoid being on the wrong side of the law.
If you’d like to consult with an immigration lawyer to learn more about how Canada’s GTS works, call us at Michael Golden Law Corporation. From our main offices in Vancouver, British Columbia, we’re able to represent clients throughout the area, including the communities of Burnaby, Surrey, and Coquitlam.
What Is the Global Talent Stream?
The Global Talent Stream (GTS) is a federal program designed to help match foreign skilled workers with employment opportunities in the country. Specifically, the program is designed to fast-track work permits for global workers who have the skills or expertise to fill roles where no Canadian or permanent residents are available or qualified.
How to Apply
Applications can be made up to six months in advance of the proposed starting date for the job, and you’ll begin by submitting an application for a labour markets impact assessment (LMIA). This can either be done online (the preferred method) or by attaching a PDF application via email. During this process, you’ll be required to do the following:
Create a Job Bank for Employers account.
Fill out the LMIA application.
Upload any supporting documents.
Pay the processing fee.
For employers headquartered in British Columbia, you must first apply within your province and include this certification with your LMIA application.
One question we hear frequently from clients is, “Do employers need an LMIA to hire under the GTS?” and the answer is, yes. If you’d like help with this, your best option is to speak with a lawyer skilled in business and immigration law who can help you through the process.
Processing Time and Fees
Applications are processed quite fast, with 80% of applicants receiving an answer within 10 business days after it has been received. The current, non-refundable application fee for 2023 is $1,000 per worker, so if you were looking to fill three roles you would have to pay a processing fee of $3,000.
There are certain restrictions on the types of employers who can make use of the Global Talent Stream. In general, there are two categories for employer eligibility.
Category A: These employers must first have been referred to the GTS by a preferred partner and must be hiring a worker with a “unique and specialised” talent.
Category B: These employers do not need a referral but must be hiring for a position found on the Global Talent Occupations List.
Employers must also stay in compliance with any current employment laws in the province relating to health insurance, workplace safety, job duties, wages, and benefits. You may also be responsible for paying fees for recruitment or third-party representatives.
In general, any foreign worker you hire will have to obtain a work permit for the duration of their employment, and you’ll likely want to know, “How long is a GTS work permit valid?” Previously, employees were only allowed to work a maximum of two years in the country, but in April 2022, this was increased to three years. Although rare, it’s possible to get this extended even further if you can prove an exceptional need.
Any employer who finds talent through the GTS must pay at least the prevailing wage that would be paid to a Canadian or permanent resident worker with the same set of skills and qualifications.
Labour Market Benefits Plan
You’ll also be required to develop a Labour Market Benefits Plan which outlines the positive impacts your business and this position will have on the country. Depending on your category, you may also have to include a detailed plan describing ways you will create more jobs for Canadians or increase skills opportunities and training for Canadians.
Work Permit Exemptions
There are a couple of instances where your new employee may be exempt from needing a work permit, but this is only the case under the following circumstances:
Researchers at publicly-funded, degree-granting institutions who work fewer than 120 days in a 12-month period
Workers with skill type 0 or skill level A (according to the National Occupational Classification) who work fewer than 15 days in a six-month period or 30 days in a 12-month period
Canadian Global Talent Stream (GTS) Lawyers in Vancouver, British Columbia
If you run a business in the Vancouver, British Columbia, area and would like to learn more about using the Global Talent Stream, reach out to our team at Michael Golden Law Corporation to schedule a consultation.