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US Citizen. US Company. Working remotely from Canada. Waiting for PR, sponsored by wife

Hi all!

My husband (US citizen) and I (dual citizen) are planning to move to British Columbia from California for my new job. We are applying outland for his permanent residency. His US company says it’s OK for him to work remotely.

Question is: does he need any kind of work permit if he is paid by an American company, in American funds, to an American bank account?

AND can you please point me to the source of how you know this information?

Thank you!

Great question, let me check with someone who might know and get back

what visa would he be on when he is in Canada?

A quick google search gave me this: https://canadianpayrollservices.com/legalities-hiring-remote-canadian-workers-us-companies/

(check this) http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/helpcentre/answer.asp?qnum=172&top=17

(and this) http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/helpcentre/answer.asp?qnum=177&top=17

(work permit might be an issue): https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/work-canada/permit/temporary/eligibility.html

Long story short, your husband will most likely be required to apply for an open work permit (not specific to an employer) and he can start work as soon as he receives it. The fourth link I mentioned says the person has to prove he/she will leave the country once work permit has expired. However the previous link says open work permit is an option. I know of a few cases when tourist visas have been rejected when PR application for same person was in process. Open work permit might be best option. Also, if you’re still in doubt, might be worthwhile to consult a lawyer.

There are two aspects to consider: 1. Legality of work 2. Taxation.

  1. Legality of work: w.r.t. holding the right “legal status” in Canada that allows you to work while being physically present in Canada. In general you’re not allowed to work on tourist visas, and US citizens who are allowed to travel to Canada without any visa are generally limited by the 90-day limit, and have to apply for a work permit if they want to work in Canada (https://www.visaplace.com/blog-immigration-law/canadian-work-permits/american-work-canada/).

Note that when it comes to work visas, the general understanding is that any person “working” in a country he/she is physically present in, irrespective of where he/she gets paid from, needs a respective work permit/visa that allows said work. Meetings/short term visits etc are exempt in most cases.

  1. Taxation: This subject, although not related to this forum, is important since you want to avoid dual taxation. There are tax treaties that your Canadian tax consultant will surely know about to avoid double taxation.

Hope this helps.

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