Do I Need Work Permit For Internship In Canada

We all know that internship is a gateway to a bright future & it’s also an opportunity to make your resume more attractive. But not all students are eligible for internship and not every university provides the work permit to students. Here I have listed some of the best universities where you can get Internship with work permit in Canada.

Many students who come to Canada on an international student visa are able to get internships while they study. But before you start searching through job boards and sending out your CV, do you need a work permit? The short answer is yes! Here’s why.

Do I Need Work Permit For Internship In Canada

College students who are studying in Canada often experience confusing problems during their study. They have the dilemma of automatically having a work permit while they are in college. Since they are not being paid while they study, they do not need a work permit. However, when they graduate and start working, they may need a work permit, as the employer will have to pay all the time and hence needs an authorization to employ foreigners.


Some study programs include work experience as part of their curriculum. You can apply for a co-op or intern work permit if:

  • you have a valid study permit
  • work is required to complete your study program in Canada
  • you have a letter from your school that confirms all students in your program need to complete work placements to get their degree, and
  • your co-op placement or internship totals 50% or less of your study program

COVID-19 and co-op placements

During the COVID-19 outbreak, many international students are studying online from abroad. If your school and employer agree, you can either

  • accept a Canadian work placement and begin working remotely from your home country
  • work for a company in your home country

If you’re working remotely from outside Canada, you can work while we process your study permit and co-op work permit applications.

Who’s not eligible

You aren’t eligible for a co-op work permit if you’re taking one of the following:

  • English or French as a second language (ESL/FSL),
  • general interest courses, or
  • courses to prepare for another study program.

If you’re not eligible for a co-op work permit, but you want to work in Canada, you need to apply for a work permit.

How to apply

How you apply for a co-op work permit depends on if you already applied for your study permit or not. Answer a few questions to get your instructions.

How applying online helps you

  • No courier fees or mail delivery time – we get your application instantly.
  • Your applications may be processed more quickly.
  • It helps you make sure your application is complete before you submit it.
  • You can quickly submit more documents online (if we ask you to).
  • You get updates on the status of your application directly in your online account.

Internship, work or study in Canada

Temporary visa to do your internship, work or study in Canada

If you want to travel to Canada temporarily, for example, because you want to do your internship, work or study in Canada, you need to apply for a visa. Even if you are planning an unremunerated internship, you will require a work permit.

International Experience Canada

The ‘International Experience Canada’ program is all about temporary work permits, specifically set up for young people. If your age is between 18 and 31 years old, you could qualify for this visa category.

Given that there is a limited number of work permits available, it is important that you register in time. In addition, the program only opens once (sometimes twice) per year. Therefore, it is necessary to plan your trip 6 to 12 months in advance. The program knows three different types of visa, explained below.

The visa categories in the IEC program are not available for all countries. Also, the maximum age, the duration of the visa and the number of work permits available depend on your country of citizenship.

Working Holiday Canada – Open work permit

Based on a Working Holiday work permit, you are allowed to perform (un)remunerated internships. Furthermore, you may work for more than one employer, and you can study in Canada for up to six months. Of course, you are not obligated to work this entire period. You can also choose to travel through Canada based on this visa.

Young Professional Canada – Employer-specific work permit

With an approved Young Professional work permit, you are allowed to work for one employer in Canada. This Canadian employer will be required to offer you a temporary job and pay a compliance fee of CAD $230,-. Therefore, it is called an employer-specific work permit. There are a few additional criteria for this application; the position and salary must meet a certain level specified by Immigration Canada.

International Co-op Internship Canada

The International Co-op work permit is specifically set up for students wishing to do their internship in Canada. This means that you must be studying when applying for this visa, and your internship should be directly linked to your field of studies.

Sign up for ‘International Experience Canada’

If you are interested to go to Canada in 2020-2021, it is important that you register with us timely. Would you like to qualify for a work visa within the youth mobility program? Contact us quickly to check if you can do your internship, work or study in Canada.

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