LMIA and Outside Canada Work Permits
We were contacted in October 2020 by a Canadian Long-Haul Trucking company that had recently been approved for a 10-person LMIA. They had the approval but didn't know how or where to source the skilled foreign workers that they needed. It was in the middle of the pandemic and many countries were not processing new work permits. We were tasked with finding and relocating experienced long haul truck drivers to come and work in Canada.
We immediately took an inventory of what countries we had available to us that were open for processing. We made the decision that we would source Filipino truck drivers who were already working in Europe. They had the skills we were looking for, spoke English fluently and were eligible for processing through IRCC Warsaw. We immediately commenced active sourcing through our recruitment team and identified a short-list of over 60 candidates. We conducted various stages of pre-screening and interviewing and finally arrived at a final selection list for presentation to the Canadian employer. The candidates that we finally selected were all based in Lithuania and had the winter driving experience required by the employer. We then set out on the challenging task of preparing and compiling these complex work permit applications under very challenging circumstances as processing had been restricted worldwide to only essential occupations. Added to this was the challenge of procuring documents, test results and documentation while these workers were on the road driving.
We assisted all drivers in scheduling and sitting for the IELTS exam in Vilnius. We worked with the British Council to expedite their testing dates as we were under a deadline to submit based on the expiring LMIA. We then directed the drivers to obtain employment certificates, translated contracts and their European licensing documentation in addition to procuring work experience documentation from back in the Philippines. One of the big challenges we faced was being able to provide a clear presentation of the Lithuanian licensing regime for foreign truck drivers. It was not straightforward and required that many different pieces of documentation from the current employer be obtained and translated. We also needed to be able to prove that these drivers were genuine temporary residents to Canada, and so had to compile extensive documentation relating to their establishment in both Lithuania and the Philippines.
Working under very tight deadlines, we prepared and submitted multiple work permit applications to IRCC Warsaw on behalf of the truck drivers destined for Canada.
Following submission of the applications, we wrote directly to IRCC Warsaw to explain the urgency of the situation and that these drivers were needed in Canada to work under contract to deliver time-sensitive food supplies to remote parts of Canada. Our submissions were accepted and IRCC Warsaw issued their work permits in only a few days after they were submitted.