In Canada, maintained status, previously known as implied status, is when a temporary resident wants to extend their status in Canada before the expiry date of their visa. The applicant may lawfully remain in Canada under the terms of their previous status until a decision is reached on the new application.

Your current application to visit, work or study in Canada is kept active until the government decides on your new application.

Maintained status can let you continue working in Canada if you have already been working in Canada on a work permit, or if you are continuing your studies in Canada on a study permit. Or, if you held visitor status at the time you applied for an extension in Canada, you may be able to remain as a visitor if you held visitor status at the time you applied for an extension or change of temporary status in Canada.

Here is a list of common questions that we have answered regarding maintained status in Canada:

How can maintained status help you stay in Canada

Maintained status can help you stay in Canada by extending your temporary resident visa. The benefits of maintaining your status are that you can continue to work in Canada if you have already been working on a work permit, or if you are continuing your studies in Canada on a study permit. Maintained status can also help you stay in Canada by extending your visitor visa. You must apply for maintained status before your temporary residency expires.

How do I get maintained status

You must be a visitor, student, or worker in Canada to obtain maintained status. Then, before your current permit expires, you must apply for an extension or a fresh permit. You may be automatically given maintained status in such a case; you do not need to apply for it separately.

When to apply for maintained status

If you are in Canada and your temporary residency is about to expire, you may be able to apply for maintained status to extend your stay in Canada. You must apply for maintained status before your temporary residency expires.

How to apply for maintained status

If you hold a temporary resident status that is about to expire, you may be able to apply for maintained status to extend your stay in Canada. You must apply for maintained status before your temporary residency expires. To apply for maintained status, you will need to submit an application to the government of Canada.

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Does work experience gained on implied status count towards PR

Yes - even if a worker's application for a work permit extension is rejected, any relevant work performed until the day of the refusal counts toward their PR application eligibility.

Is my implied status automatic after I submit a PR application

No – even if you applied for permanent residency through Express Entry or you have submitted a sponsorship application, you do not automatically acquire implied status in Canada.

In order to keep temporary legal status in Canada, residents must file an application to extend their stay, whether they have applied for permanent residence or not. Before your current temporary authorization expires, you can extend your status by obtaining a bridging open work permit (BOWP) or a visitor extension, for example.

What are the risks of not maintaining your status

If you do not maintain your status, you may be required to leave Canada. You may also be ineligible to re-apply for a work permit or study permit. In addition, if you have already been working in Canada on a work permit, or if you are continuing your studies in Canada on a study permit, you may no longer be able to work or study in Canada.

What happens if I leave Canada on maintained status

Temporary Residents on a Work Permit

You can continue to work under the same conditions as your existing permit in which you arrived in Canada if you are on maintained status as a worker. If you depart Canada while on maintained status as a worker, you will not be able to work in Canada again until your new work permit is granted.

Temporary Residents on a Study Permit

If you are a student who has recently been granted maintained status, you may continue studying, and working if appropriate, until your new study permit is available. You will not be allowed to study in Canada upon returning to Canada if you depart while on implied status as a student.

The only exemption is if you are a minor studying at the primary or secondary school level, in which case, you may study without a permit. You will not be permitted to study until you obtain your new study permit if you are over 18 and/or studying at the post-secondary level

Temporary Residents on a Visitor Visa

If you're in Canada as a tourist, you can't work or study. You will return to Canada as a visitor the next time you enter if you leave while on implied status as a visitor.

The duration you can stay as a visitor is reset each time you re-enter Canada as a tourist. While the CBSA determines how long you can remain when you enter, most visitors are given the full six months permitted to visit Canada.

There are no consequences for leaving Canada while on implied status as a visitor.

Conclusion

Ensuring you have maintained status is important because it allows you to continue working, studying or visiting Canada. If you do not maintain your status, you may be required to leave Canada and may be ineligible to re-apply for a work permit or study permit. Make sure to apply for maintained status before your temporary residency status expires.