Sometimes well-meaning foreign workers and international students unwillingly contravene the terms of their work permits or study permits. While all foreign nationals are expected to know the conditions imposed upon them, mistakes can still happen. Here is what to do if you realize that you have studied or worked in Canada without authorization:
1. Stop working or studying immediately
It is very important to immediately cease the unauthorized activity. Stop working or studying as soon as you realize you are not authorized to do so.
2. Get legal advice
While some immigration matters can be handled without the assistance of a professional, preserving your status in Canada can be tricky after engaging in unauthorized work or study. Remember that only Canadian lawyers and licensed immigration consultants are legally authorized to advise you on Canadian immigration matters in exchange for a fee.
3. Assess your options
In some cases, foreign nationals who engaged in unauthorized work or study must leave Canada and wait six month before they can apply for a new work or study permit. In other cases, it may be possible to immediately apply for a new work or study permit if the unauthorized activity was limited in scope and duration. Another option may be to apply for a Temporary Resident Permit and/or restoration of status.
4. Make a plan
If you are able to overcome unauthorized work or study in Canada, consider yourself lucky. You must carefully review the conditions set forth on your new work permit or study permit and make sure you follow them in the future.
Please note that this article does not constitute legal advice. Each case is different and your options may vary depending your situation. If you need assistance overcoming unauthorized work or study in Canada, please contact me for assistance.