14 December 2009

Canadian visa rules for live-in caregivers to be reformed

The Canadian Government has announced proposed regulations to better protect live-in carers and make it easier for them and their families to obtain permanent resident.

Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Jason Kenney made the announcement following extensive consultations with care giver groups across Canada and personal testimony before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration.

The first proposed Canadian immigration change to the Live-in Caregiver Program will eliminate the requirement for live-in caregivers to take a second medical examination when applying to become permanent residents.

It was a change advocated by the late Juana Tejada, who developed cancer while working as a live-in caregiver and was initially denied permanent resident status when she did not pass her second medical examination. Special ministerial intervention saw her gained status in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.

The second proposed change will allow live-in caregivers who work overtime to apply for Canadian permanent residence sooner. Currently, live-in caregivers must work for two years within the first three years of their Canadian Visa before they can apply for permanent residence in Canada.

The changes mean that live-in caregivers would be eligible to apply for permanent residence after 3,900 work hours.

Other proposed regulations will also require employers of live-in caregivers to pay for travel costs for live-in caregivers to come to work in Canada, medical insurance until live-in caregivers become eligible for provincial health coverage, and workplace safety insurance and any recruiting fees owed to third parties.

The Canadian Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their Canadian Immigration application to the Canadian Embassy.

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