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  • Sreejith Subrahmanian

Staying in Canada after expiry of PGWP

An individual who has completed a study program in Canada may be eligible to apply for a Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). The duration of the PGWP is decided by IRCC based on the duration of the study program. PGWP is a one-time opportunity without an option to extend it. A PGWP is an open work permit that gives one an opportunity to work for any employer in Canada and is not limited or specific to a Province. However, for future and prospective immigration purposes, it would be beneficial to obtain work experiences in a skilled occupation.


Canada has categorized occupations into various skill levels. Skilled occupations fall under the categories of NOC 0, A, and B. At this point, it is important to note that the categorization would be changing in 2022 when the new classification system is scheduled to come into effect. Working for a skilled occupation opens up avenues to apply for the express entry program, which is Canada’s most popular program for permanent residency applicants. It is an individual and a case specific decision to decide on the appropriate pathway to Canadian immigration.


Upon the expiry of a PGWP, one can make an application for Canadian Permanent Residency through express entry or PNP programs, as may be suitable; or apply to stay as a temporary resident by way of work permits such as LMIA or through international mobility Programs or International Experience Canada program. The ideal program to apply for would be dependent on several factors such as country you are from, the experience gained in Canada, and other related factors required for assessing eligibility.

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