August 11, 2016
Canadian Companies to Benefit from Relaxed Visa Requirements for Mexican Citizens
As of Dec. 1, 2016, Canadian companies will be able to hire or transfer Mexican employees more quickly and at a lower cost. Mexican citizens may apply for work permits directly at Canadian ports of entry, similar to American citizens.
Jerome G. Grzeca
Mexican citizens will no longer need Temporary Resident Visas (TRVs) in order to seek entry into Canada. Effective Dec. 1, 2016, this will greatly simplify the admission process for Mexican citizens. Canada’s decision to eliminate the TRV requirement is particularly great news for Canadian companies that wish to employ Mexican citizens. As of Dec. 1, companies will be able to hire or transfer Mexican employees more quickly and at a lower cost.
Jerome G. Grzeca, Marquette 1988, is the managing partner of Grzeca Law Group, S.C. where he exclusively practices in the area of employment-based immigration law. He has practiced business immigration law for more than 25 years in Washington, D.C., and Milwaukee.
Presently, in order for a Mexican citizen to obtain a Canadian work permit, it is necessary for him or her to apply for a TRV at a Canadian consulate abroad before traveling. This step incurs extra filing fees and legal expenses, and can delay an employee’s Canadian start date by weeks or even months. As foreign nationals are often hired or transferred in response to an urgent need that cannot otherwise be met in the Canadian labor market, this obstacle can negatively impact the business concerns of Canadian companies.
Eliminating the TRV requirement, however, means that Mexican citizens may apply for work permits directly at Canadian ports of entry, just like American citizens. Rather than idly waiting in government processing limbo, Mexican citizens will be able to file work permit applications at the border and have them adjudicated immediately by a Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer. A process that currently takes weeks or months could instead take just minutes, expanding the pool of candidates readily available when a position must be filled on short-notice.
The new policy has not yet gone into effect, and Mexican citizens will need TRVs to enter Canada through Nov. 30, 2016. In addition, after the TRV requirement is dropped, a Mexican citizen will be required to hold an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) in order to enter Canada by air. Fortunately, the online eTA application is easy to complete, costs only $7 (Can.) and is typically approved almost instantly. In order to enter by land or sea, a Mexican citizen will only need to present his or her passport. This may be relevant if there are Mexican citizens currently in the United States that you are considering for employment in Canada.
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