If you are a Canadian employer with employees on work permits, it’s important to know that Canadian immigration authorities may conduct an immigration audit inspection to ensure that you have been conforming to the conditions imposed on the work permit when it was issued. Failure to conform could result in severe penalties for both the employer and employees.
LMIA Exemptions and the Offer of Employment
When applying for or assisting a foreign national in applying for a work permit under one of the LMIA exemptions, employers typically need to submit an offer of employment. This offer outlines the salary, benefits, duties, and physical work location of the employee. The information entered into the offer of employment is what immigration authorities use to assess whether the employer has been meeting the conditions imposed on the work permit.
During an immigration compliance inspection, authorities may request specific information from the employer to ascertain whether the conditions are being upheld. This may include payroll statements, HR information, and job duties. If the employer is found to be in breach of the conditions, penalties may range from a warning to a monetary fine or even a bar or ban from utilizing immigration programs.
Staying in Compliance
Employers should keep proper records and be aware of the conditions indicated in the job offer or employment contract. It’s important to ensure that the company is continually in conformance with these conditions.
An immigration compliance inspection is something that Canadian employers with foreign national employees should be aware of. By staying in compliance with the conditions imposed on work permits, employers can avoid penalties and maintain their ability to utilize immigration programs.