Effective December 22, 2014 and as part of a 1 year trial, Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CIC) will be issuing Open Work Permits to certain spouses or common-law partners who are applying for permanent residence from inside Canada. Previously, sponsored spouses would have to wait until first stage approval to be issued open work permits. Since first stage approval is taking nearly 16 months, it creates major hardships in that these people cannot work while living in Canada waiting for their applications to be finalized.
Applicants who have already submitted their application for permanent residence under the Spouse/Common-Law class but have not yet applied for an open work permit should do so immediately.
If an applicant has already received an approval in principal, they have the option of applying for a work permit online.
Applicants who have yet to submit their applications for permanent residence should also complete an application for a work permit and submit along with their application for permanent residence.