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Changes for Live-in Caregivers in Canada

Who is a live-in caregiver?

According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), “Live-in caregivers are individuals who are qualified to provide care for children, elderly persons or persons with disabilities in private homes without supervision. Live-in caregivers must live in the private home where they work in Canada.”

How can one work as a live-in caregiver?

To be able to work as a live-in caregiver, the person should first apply with the Live-in Caregiver Program. If the application is approved, the applicant will be issued a work permit.

What are the changes in the Live-in Caregiver Program?

Caregivers were required to work for 3,900 hours before they can consider applying for permanent residence in Canada. The process so far was for the caregivers to wait for an initial approval of their permanent resident applications before they could become eligible for an open work permit. An open work permit allows them to look for any job they might be interested in. They no longer had to live in their employer’s home once they had an open work permit.

The change now is in the processing of these applications which allows these caregivers who have applied for permanent residence to be able to get their open work permits 18 months earlier than usual. Since Dec 11, 2011, all applications filed by those who have fulfilled their obligations as live-in caregivers and submitted error-free applications have been reviewed and open work permits are being issued.

Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney said, “The change I have announced today will help caregivers settle into their new life in Canada while they wait for their permanent resident applications to be processed.”

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