Last updated on July 21st, 2018
Regulation 186(s) of Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations (the “Regulations“) regulates when crew members are permitted to work in Canada without first obtaining a work permit. The Regulations state:
R186(s). A foreign national may work in Canada without a work permit as a member of a crew who is employed by a foreign company aboard a means of transportation that
(i) is foreign-owned and not registered in Canada, and
(ii) is engaged primarily in international transportation
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (“IRCC“) has published helpful guidance as to how this Regulation is to be interpreted (the “Guidelines“).
What is a Member of a Crew
As per the Guidelines, on a cruise ship, crew members include:
- licensed officers: master, first officer, chief officer or chief mate, first engineer or chief engineer, and subordinate officers and engineers;
- non-licensed crew: ordinary seamen, able-bodied seamen, bosun (deck crew foreman), engine- room crew (oilers and fitters), and kitchen and mess-room staff (cooks, stewards and messmen); and
- the hotel manager, cruise director, purser, medical staff, managers and staff of the ship’s bars, restaurants, boutiques and casino, as well as house-cleaning staff and entertainers.
Crew members do not include:
- supernumeraries: spouses, children and other dependants of crew members;
- foreign contractors and shipping company technicians: foreign nationals temporarily assigned to a vessel for the sole purpose of making repairs;
- shipping company superintendents, including persons referred to as supercargo, superintendent engineers, or port captains;
- employees or executives of a marine transportation company who travel aboard or who visit ships to monitor or supervise operations such as maintenance and repairs,
The Post-Graduation Work Permit (“PGWP“) allows students who have graduated from most Canadian public post-secondary institutions to stay and work in Canada upon graduation. As someone who remembers when I was in undergrad the frustration of international students who had to leave Canada upon graduating even though they would have jumped at the opportunity to stay, work, and pay taxes in Canada, it is certainly a welcome program.
PGWPs are open work permits. This means that international graduates who possess them can work for any employer. There is no restriction on the type of work that can be performed. Having said that, if a student wishes to work in health care or in education they will need to first obtain a medical exam. And, as with all work permits, PGWP holders are prohibited from working in the sex industry.
There is no requirement for a job offer prior to applying.
Outside of Quebec, in order for an international graduate to obtain a PGWP after graduating, an international student must:
- have a valid study permit when applying for their PGWP;
- have continuously studied full time in Canada, except for the final academic session, where part-time studies are permitted;
- have completed and passed a program of study that is at least eight months in duration at either a public post-secondary institution, a private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as public institutions, or at a Canadian private institution if the student was enrolled in a program of study which led to a degree; and
- apply for the work permit within 90 days of receiving written confirmation from their educational institution that they have met the requirements for completing their program of study.
Please note that none of the information on this website should be construed as being legal advice. As well, you should not rely on any of the information contained in this website when determining whether and how to apply to a given program. Canadian immigration law is constantly changing, and the information above may be dated. If you have a question about the contents of this blog, or any question about Canadian immigration law, please contact the Author.
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