The new way to activate your work or study permit in Canada amidst Covid-19

As a result of the Covid-19 travel restrictions, study and work permit applicants with approval letters have been unable to flagpole at the Canadian border, meaning that they have been unable to leave and re-enter Canada to activate their permits. In response, the Government of Canada has instituted a new procedure to enable these foreign nationals to request their study or work permit online and have their documents sent to them in the mail.

The new process includes the use of the IRCC web form which is an efficient means for individuals to be able to communicate with the IRCC to request or add information regarding their individual case. For the purposes of validating their permits, foreign nationals must request the examination and issuance of documentation by providing all the relevant details within the web form such as:

  •  application number
  • expiry date of their letter of introduction
  • contact information
  • name of designated learning institution and program (if applicable)
  • employer’s name and contact details (if applicable)


In viewing the request, IRCC officers will then review the application to verify all the information, look for any concerns or case notes and may contact the applicant if necessary. If the work or study permit is refused, the officer will add notes specifying the reason for their decision and advise the applicant of the next steps such as when they have to leave the country. Applicants who are issued an approval will receive their documents in the mail and will then be able to begin to work or study in Canada.

This process will be in place until March 31, 2021 and is another great example of the steps that the Canadian government continues to take to recognize the effects of the pandemic on foreign nationals in Canada and to encourage the realization of their immigration goals.

Please refer to our LinkedIn page to get access to online webinars or articles posted on the most recent Canadian immigration updates. To discuss the details of your situation, please reach out to our office and we will gladly assist you.

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