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IRCC Announces Additional Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Eligibility Updates

On August 26, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada announced three additional updates to post-graduation work permit (PGWP) eligibility for international students starting a program online.


According to the announcement, “These changes are being implemented to provide more flexibility on eligibility rules for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program for students who need or want to start their Canadian study program online from abroad.”

To be eligible, students must submit a study permit application before starting a program in spring, summer, or fall 2020, or winter 2021.


These additional measures demonstrate Canada’s ongoing commitment to the safety and support of international students studying abroad in Canada.



Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) Eligibility


Students can study online from abroad until April 30, 2021, with no time deducted from the length of a future PGWP, as long as 50% of their program of study is eventually completed in Canada.


Students enrolled in a program that is 8-12 months in length, with a start date from May to September 2020, can complete their entire program online from abroad and still be eligible for a PGWP.


Students who have enrolled in a program with a start date between May to September 2020 and study online up to April 30, 2021, and who graduate from more than one eligible program of study, may be able to combine the length of their programs of study when they apply for a PGWP in the future, as long as their total studies are completed in Canada

International Students Already in Canada


The Government of Canada also announced measures for international students already in Canada:


Students already studying in Canada during the Winter, Spring, and Summer semesters can continue to work on- or off-campus under the terms of their study permit if they:

Were forced to study online.


Drop down to part-time studies or take a break due to restrictions on classroom learning

International students already studying in Canada during the winter, spring, and summer semesters will remain eligible for a PGWP if they:


>>Complete more than 50% of their program online.

>>Drop down to part-time studies or take a break from their studies due to restrictions on classroom learning.

>>International students can work more than 20 hours per week off-campus until August 31, 2020, if they are employed in an essential service or function.

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