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Detailed requirements & documents for ICT Work Permit.

Detailed requirements & documents for Intracompany Transfer (ICT) Work Permit.

In this post, we will delve into the essential requirements and criteria for obtaining an Intracompany Transfer (ICT) work permit in Canada. Whether you are an entrepreneur seeking to transfer yourself, an employer looking to bring in a valuable employee, or an employee about to embark on a transfer, this information is crucial. We will explore key definitions and the necessary documents for a successful ICT application.

Core Requirements for Intracompany Transfer

The Intracompany Transfer (ICT) option is available to legal business entities with a parent, subsidiary, brand, or affiliate legal entity in Canada. This encompasses various organizational structures such as corporations, partnerships, and even non-profit organizations. The key criterion is the existence of a defined relationship between the company outside of Canada and the entity within Canada. This relationship can either be pre-existing, as seen in established companies like Nestle and TCS, or initiated when starting a business in Canada, such as setting up a branch or subsidiary.

Let’s clarify some fundamental definitions in the context of intra-company transfers as per IRCC:

  • Branch: An operating division or office of the same organization located in a different geographic location.
  • Affiliate: Refers to one of two subsidiaries owned and controlled by the same parent or individual, or one of two legal entities owned and controlled by the same group of individuals with approximately equal shares or proportions in each company.
  • Subsidiary: A firm, corporation, or legal entity of which a parent company owns, directly or indirectly, half or more than half, and exercises control over the entity.
  • Parent Company: A firm, corporation, or legal entity that has subsidiaries.

Using Nestle Canada as an example, a wholly owned subsidiary of Nestle S.A. (the global company in Switzerland), we can see how this relationship facilitates employee transfers from Switzerland to Canada.

Key Criteria from the Employee’s Perspective

To qualify for an ICT, the employee must have been employed by the parent, subsidiary, branch, or affiliate in Canada for at least one year on a full-time basis within the previous three years, in a similar position held with the company outside Canada. Furthermore, the employee must be capable of transferring back to the foreign company upon completion of their assignment in Canada. Citizenship from any country is acceptable for the applicant.

Employer’s Documentation Requirements

The employer must submit a set of crucial documents to initiate the ICT process. If the company is not a new legal entity in Canada, evidence of active business operations is essential. Documentation such as articles of incorporation, profit/loss statements, partnership agreements, business tax returns, and registration with Canada Customs and Revenue Agency as an employer is required.

The employer is also responsible for submitting specific documents on behalf of the employee to be transferred, including:

  • Confirmation of employment documents like employment letters and pay slips, detailing the employee’s current job title and duties.
  • An organizational chart displaying the employee’s position within the company, especially crucial for senior managers and executives.
  • Confirmation of the employee’s continuous full-time employment for at least one year within the last three years.
  • Statement regarding the intended duration of the employee’s stay in Canada.
  • Job offer details, including the position and duties for the role the employee is being transferred for.

For startups or new legal entities in Canada, additional requirements come into play. These include securing physical premises, staffing plans, demonstrating financial capacity for Canadian business and employee compensation, and presenting a comprehensive business plan.

Renewal and Specialized Knowledge Workers

The initial work permit for ICT is issued for one year, with the possibility of renewal. For executives and senior managers, the work permit can be renewed up to a total of 7 years, and for specialized knowledge workers, up to a maximum of 5 years. However, renewals are contingent on demonstrating the ongoing qualifying relationship between Canadian and foreign companies and the continuous provision of goods or services.

Specialized knowledge workers in ICT positions must demonstrate a high degree of proprietary knowledge and advanced expertise that significantly contributes to the Canadian operation. Documentary evidence, such as resumes, references, job descriptions, and relevant experience, is crucial in these cases.


The Intracompany Transfer (ICT) process may be intricate, but the benefits are substantial. Besides the business advantages, the transferee may eventually be eligible to obtain permanent residency through Express Entry, as explained in the linked video.

For personalized guidance or to discuss your specific case, feel free to schedule a consultation.

How to apply for an intracompany transfer work permit. Requirements explained.



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