Canada Makes it Easier for Temporary Foreign Workers and Students to Access CERB

Published on: May 28th, 2020

The federal government has announced that international students and temporary foreign workers no longer need to show proof of a valid work permit in order to access the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).

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Foreign residents in Canada will no longer need to show an image of their work permit when applying to CERB. Effective immediately, agents are only required to get verbal confirmation from the applicant regarding work permit details.

This policy applies to everyone who meets the program’s other requirements and has a “900-series” social insurance number. This includes students, temporary foreign workers, and refugee claimants.

The goal is to simplify and speed up the application process for benefits, removing obstacles so that immigrants who find themselves in difficult financial circumstances due to the COVID-19 pandemic can receive the help they need.

This is the latest in a series of measures that demonstrates Canada’s continued support for temporary foreign workers and international students at this time. 

The government has also made it easier for international students to apply for or renew their study permits and has allowed some temporary foreign workers to begin working full-time while their work permit is still being processed

The CERB offers $500 per week for up to 16 weeks to eligible workers. International students who meet the CERB’s eligibility criteria may also benefit from this income support.

39,319 international students had applied for CERB by May 18, and 30,645 have received payments so far.

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