The post-graduation work permit (PGWP) is very important for the students and it also helps Canada’s immigration system, allowing international students to work for any employer, change jobs anywhere in Canada for up to three years after graduation from eligible Canadian universities and colleges (DLI). I mentioned in my previous posts that it is important to choose the college/university wisely as not all Designated Learning Institutions (DLI) offer PWGP eligible programs. Click here for the List of DLI in Canada.
When should you apply for PGWP?
As per the rules, all eligible international students may apply for PGWP from within Canada or outside within 180 days of completing their studies. Study completion is considered as receiving a Completion letter from the Institute (DLI). In my case, my wife was fortunate to get a job before completing her studies. In fact, she was already working in that company on a co-op work permit, hence we had to apply on the same day we received the completion letter. A Co-op work permit is required if gaining work experience is essential for your course completion. Read more about it Here
You must remember that once you get your Completion letter from the college, you must stop working full-time (more than 20 hours. per week), in case you are working, apply for PGWP as soon as possible to continue working full-time.
The following chart will help understand different scenarios:
Document Checklist for PGWP:
- Passport – Must include personal information pages and all pages with visa/stamps, including the most recent entry into Canada
- Current and valid immigration document – Study Permit/Co-op work permit
- Completion Letter – This is a letter from the college/university
- Final transcripts – Use official transcripts, not “Unofficial”. In case you could not upload the official transcripts at the time of application, upload it later using the webform. In case you have completed more than one program, you must attach completion letters and transcripts for all
- In the case of Co-op – Original Letter of Acceptance (LOA) provided by the institution stating that work/employment was an essential part of the studies
We also applied for Spouse Open Work Permit (SOWP) and Study Permit for my kids. You are eligible for SOWP/extension only if your spouse is employed in NOC O, A, B. Hence, you need some more documents.
Additional documents are required in case applying for SOWP with PGWP:
- Documents required for SOWP application. Click to read the SOWP document checklist
- Offer of employment letter from the employer clearly stating the NOC code (NOC O, A or B)
- At least 3 paystubs
- Bank Statement reflecting the credit of paycheck
Documents Required for Study Permit Extension for kids:
- There are no additional documents required for kids’ study permit extension. Follow the application process in CIC and it will request basic documents for the kids
- Note: There is no LOA in case kids are studying in elementary or secondary school. You can write “NA” in those fields.
Here is a very helpful resource from UBC: University of British Columbia