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Updated Caregiver Program

On November 30, 2014, a number of changes were made to the Live-­In Caregiver Program (LCP), offering further opportunities for caregivers to become permanent residents. These reforms aim to bring down the backlog and reduce processing times for Applications for Permanent Residence. 

Caregivers are no longer required to live with their employers, in recognition of the fact that the “live-­in” requirement was impractical and had led to exploitation of some Temporary Foreign Workers. Additionally, two new Permanent Resident categories have been introduced under which caregivers may apply: one for childcare providers, and another for caregivers of people with high medical needs. Each category will have a cap of 2,750 places, for a total of 5,500 applications per year.

A caregiver already in possession of an LCP work permit may now choose to live independently and later apply for Permanent Residence under one of the new categories. However, she would be required to obtain a new Work Permit (replacing the LCP Work Permit) before doing so. 

The requirement to have 2 years of full­-time work experience as a caregiver in Canada before being eligible to apply for Permanent Residence remains under the new categories. As well, employers are still required to obtain a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from Service Canada. Citizenship and Immigration Canada has stated the intention to process these applications for Permanent Residence within six months, similar to the processing times for the Express Entry system. If this occurs, it will be a welcome improvement to a system that frequently takes 3­4 years for processing.