Canada has a number of immigration pathways to facilitate permanent residence in Canada for eligible foreign caregivers.

  • Three-month Interim Pathway for Caregivers scheduled to run until June 4, 2019.
  • New Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots will launch later in 2019 to replace the current Caring for Children and Caring for People with High Medical Needs pilots, which expire in November 2019.
Caregiver Nurse planning with with senior.

To learn more about current and coming pathways to Canadian permanent residence for foreign caregivers, this page will cover:

Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP)

Although the LCP is officially closed to new applicants, individuals can apply for permanent residence through the program if they have at least two years of work experience in the program and:

  • They are already working in Canada with an LCP work permit; or
  • They were approved for their first LCP work permit based on an employer's positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) application submitted on or before November 30, 2014. 

Caring for Children

In order to qualify for Canadian Immigration under the Caring for Children program, caregivers must:

  • Have a minimum of 24 months (within the past four years, or 48 months) of full-time work experience (at least 30 hours per week) in Canada as a home childcare provider, with a valid work permit;
    • Note: Applicants can have breaks in employment (for example, periods where you were not employed, sick leave, parental leave)
  • Meet the description of a home childcare provider as defined by NOC 4411;
    • Applicants will need to show they performed the duties in the job description, including most of the main duties listed. 
  • Have completed a one-year Canadian post-secondary credential, or equivalent foreign credential proven with an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA); and
  • Prove minimum language ability of Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 for one of Canada's two official languages, English or French.

Applicants must have cared for children under the age of 18, in their own home or in their employer’s home. Caregivers do not need to have lived in their employer’s home to be considered eligible. Foster parents are not eligible to apply under this program.

Caring for People with High Medical Needs

In order to qualify for Canadian Immigration under the Caring for People with High Medical Needs program, caregivers must have:

  • A minimum of 24 months (within the past four years, or 48 months) of full-time work experience (at least 30 hours per week) in Canada as:
    • Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (3012)
    • Licensed practical nurses (3233)
    • Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates (3413)
    • Home support workers and related occupations (4412)
      • Housekeepers are not eligible under this occupation classification.
  • Demonstrate a license to practice in Canada if work experience in Canada was as a registered nurse or registered psychiatric nurse (NOC 3012) or as a licensed practical nurse (NOC 3233);
  • Have completed a one-year Canadian post-secondary credential, or equivalent foreign credential proven with an ECA; and
  • Prove minimum language ability for one of Canada's two official languages, English or French.
    • NOC 3012 must demonstrate CLB 7
    • NOC 3233, 3413, OR 4412 must demonstrate CLB 5

Note: Applicants can have breaks in employment (for example, periods where you were not employed, sick leave, parental leave).

Interim Pathway for Caregivers 

Scheduled to run between March 4, 2019 and June 4, 2019, the three-month Interim Pathway for Caregivers is for caregivers who:

  • Are authorized to work in Canada on a work permit other than a Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP) work permit (at the time of applying);
  • Intend to reside in a province or territory other than Quebec;
  • Have acquired at least one year of full-time Canadian work experience in an eligible caregiver occupation, since November 30, 2014;
    • Eligible caregiver occupation includes: Home child care provider — National Occupational Classification (NOC) Group 4411; and/or Home support worker — NOC Group 4412
  • Have a Canadian high school diploma, or equivalent foreign credential proven with an ECA; and
  • Have a minimum proficiency in English or French equivalent to a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 for all four language abilities (reading, writing, speaking and listening).

Candidates whose educational credential was obtained outside Canada and who cannot obtain an ECA before the Interim Pathway for Caregivers closes on June 4, 2019, are still eligible if they provide proof that they have applied to get an ECA. This proof includes written confirmation from an IRCC-approved agency that they have submitted a request for an ECA and/or receipt of payment.

There is no maximum number of applications that IRCC will accept through the Interim Pathway for Caregivers.

Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker Pilots 

These two new pilots, which are set to launch later in 2019, will replace the currently active Caring for Children and Caring for People with High Medical Needs pilots. These pilots will expire in November 2019.

These programs will accept a maximum of 2,750 principal applicants each, for a total of 5,500 principal applicants, per year.

Pilots will provide:

  • Occupation-specific work permits for caregivers, providing the ability to change jobs quickly if necessary.
  • Open work permits for spouses/common-law partners and study permits for dependent children, to allow the caregiver’s family to accompany them to Canada.

Find out if you are eligible for any of Canada's caregiver immigration programs

Comparison of Canada Caregivers Permanent Residence Pathways

Criteria Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP) Caring for Children (expires November 2019) Caring for people with High Medical Needs (expires November 2019) Interim Pathway for Caregivers (expires on June 4, 2019)
Work experience

Experience as an authorized full-time live-in caregiver in the LCP.

Canadian experience as a home childcare provider.

Note: Experience as a foster parent doesn’t count.

Canadian experience in one of these jobs:

  • registered nurse and registered psychiatric nurse
  • licensed practical nurse
  • nurse aide, orderly and patient service associate
  • home support worker

Note: Experience as a housekeeper doesn’t count.

Canadian experience as a:

  • home childcare provider
  • home support worker, or
  • a mix of both

Your work experience must have been gained while working on a valid temporary work permit.

Note: Experience as a foster parent or housekeeper doesn’t count.

Length of Work Experience

Within 4 years from the day an applicant entered Canada through LCP, applicant must have at least:

  • 24 months of full-time work in the LCP

    or

  • a total of 3,900 hours of full-time work in the LCP, within a minimum of 22 months (which may include a maximum of 390 hours of overtime)
24 months of full-time work in Canada in the 48 months before you apply. 24 months of full-time work in Canada in the 48 months before you apply. 12 months of full-time work in Canada since November 30, 2014.
Language Skills (English or French) Language would have been assessed when applying for the first LCP work permit CLB 5

CLB 7 if registered nurse or registered psychiatric nurse

CLB 5 if licensed practical nurse, nurse aide, orderly and patient service associate, or home support worker.

CLB 5
Education

Education would have been assessed when applying for the first LCP work permit. 

Completed a:

  • 1-year Canadian post-secondary education credential, or
  • non-Canadian education credential that’s equal to a completed post-secondary education credential of at least 1 year in Canada.

Note: Review ECA requirement.

Completed a

  • 1-year Canadian post-secondary education credential, or
  • non-Canadian education credential that’s equal to a completed post-secondary education credential of at least 1 year in Canada.

Note: Review ECA requirement.

Completed a:

  • Canadian high school diploma, or
  • non-Canadian educational diploma, certificate or credential that’s equal to a Canadian high school diploma.

Note: Review ECA requirement.

Canada Caregivers: Questions and Answers

1. Which caregiver permanent residence pathways are currently open?

Canada's Caring for Children and Caring for People with High Medical Needs pilots are now open but are set to expire on November 29, 2019. To be eligible to apply for these pilots, applicants need to have two years of full-time work experience as a caregiver and submit their application before the pilots' expiration date. 

Note: One-time Interim Pathway for Caregivers is open for applications until June 4, 2019. 

2. Can I apply for permanent residence under the closed Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP)?

Caregivers with two years work experience under the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP) may apply for permanent residence in Canada if they also are already working in Canada with a LCP work permit, or were approved for their first LCP work permit based on a LMIA on or before November 30, 2014.

3.  Who can apply to the Interim Pathway for Caregivers?

Caregivers who have at least one year of work experience in Canada as a home childcare provider (NOC 4411) or home support worker (NOC 4412) accumulated since November 30, 2014, may be able to apply for permanent residence through the Interim Pathway for Caregivers.

4. Can I apply to the Interim Pathway for Caregivers while outside Canada?

It depends on your status at the time of applying. When applying for permanent residence through the Interim Pathway, individuals must:

  • have a valid work permit, or
  • have applied to extend their work permit and be waiting on a decision, or
  • have applied to restore your status as a worker. 

It is important to note that IRCC will consider you ineligible for the Interim Pathway if: 

  • your application to extend your work permit is refused
  • your application to restore your status as a worker is refused
  • your current work permit is in the LCP, or
  • you are applying to extend your work permit or restore your status and your most recent work permit was under the LCP. 

5. Who is not eligible to apply to the Interim Pathway for Caregivers?

Individuals are not eligible for the Interim Pathway for Caregivers if:

  • Their application to extend their work permit is refused
  • Their application to restore status as a worker is refused
  • Their current work permit is in the Live-in Caregiver Program (LCP), or
  • They are applying to extend their work permit or restore their status and their most recent work permit was under the LCP.

6. How will the Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker Pilots differ from the current programs?

Under the new pilots, which are set to launch later in 2019, IRCC will issue eligible caregivers’ occupation-specific work permits rather than an employer-specific work permit. This means caregivers will have the freedom to change employers if need be.

7. Can I apply to the caregiver programs with Quebec work experience and move to another province?

Yes. You can use your work experience in Quebec to apply for permanent residence through one of the caregiver programs even if you plan to live in another province. You will need to satisfy the immigration officer that you intend to live in a province other than Quebec. You may wish to include supporting documentation with your application to help prove that you plan to live elsewhere in Canada.

Find out if you are eligible for any of Canada's caregiver immigration programs

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