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IRCC Ends Temporary Extension: Changes to Off-Campus Work Hours for International Students

In a recent announcement, Immigration Minister Marc Miller revealed that temporary measures allowing international students to work more than 20 hours per week off-campus will not be renewed.

Temporary Extension Background

Since October 2022, IRCC had permitted international students with off-campus work authorization to exceed the 20-hour per week limit while classes were in session. However, this extension is no longer in effect.

New Work Hour Limits

Beginning in the fall academic semester of this year, international students in Canada will be restricted to working up to 24 hours per week while classes are in session. This decision diverges from previous plans to explore extending work hours to 30 per week.

Reasoning Behind the Decision

Minister Miller cited concerns about the potential negative impact on students' academic performance if work hours were increased to 30 per week. Additionally, limiting work hours aims to discourage students from primarily seeking employment in Canada through study permit applications.

Financial Considerations

The decision to limit work hours to 24 per week also takes into account the increased cost of living for international students announced last December. To study in Canada, applicants must demonstrate financial capability, including having $20,635 in savings in addition to tuition costs.

Other Changes for International Students

This decision is part of broader changes aimed at enhancing the integrity of Canada's international student program. Additional steps include obtaining a Provincial Attestation Letter (PAL) from the province of the designated learning institution (DLI) and implementing the Trusted Institutions Framework.

Eligibility to Work in Canada

International students wishing to work off-campus must meet specific requirements, including holding a valid study permit, studying full-time at a DLI, maintaining satisfactory academic standing, and having a valid Social Insurance Number (SIN). Unlimited work hours during academic breaks remain permissible for students enrolled to return to full-time studies in the upcoming semester.

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