Post-graduation work permit (PGWP) validity and application


Post-graduation work permits are exempt from Labour Market Impact Assessments.

With a post-graduation work permit, as with all open work permits, graduates can

  • work full time

  • work part time

  • be self-employed

A post-graduation work permit may be issued based on the length of the study program for a minimum of 8 months up to a maximum of 3 years

The program of study is at least 8 months and less than 2 years: The length of the work permit should coincide with the length of the program.

Officers may issue 3‑year post-graduation work permits to individuals who complete a master’s or doctoral degree in Canada when the eligible DLI has confirmed in the written confirmation of program completion that the degree is 16 to 23 months in length and does not include regularly scheduled breaks.


  • The program of study is 2 years or longer. If the length of the program is confirmed by the eligible DLI in the written confirmation of program completion (such as an official letter or transcript), the length of the work permit should be 3 years.

The student completed more than one program from an eligible DLI within 2 years: If the combined length of the programs is 2 years or longer (or 1,800 hours or longer for DVS and AVS programs in Quebec), the work permit may be valid for up to 3 years.


Making an application


Applicants must apply for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) within 180 days of obtaining written confirmation, such as an official letter or transcript, from the designated learning institution (DLI) indicating that they have met the requirements for completing their program of study.


Calculation of the 180 days begins the day the student’s final marks are issued or the day formal written notification of program completion is received, whichever comes first. The onus is on the applicant to provide proof of the date the transcript is received. Officers may also confirm this date with the DLI.


Supporting documents

  • Letter confirming completion of the program of study

  • Transcript



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