The Government of Canada has today announced that the four year cumulative duration limitation to certain classes of work permit has been eliminated. These provisions of cumulative duration would previously preclude the extension of most NOC B, C, and D (those occupations other than Senior Management and Professionals) to a maximum total stay of four years in Canada with a work permit, after which the individual would have to be absent for a period of 48 months before being able to receive a work permit once more.
The removal of this limitation means that any occupation is now eligible for ongoing extension, so long as all other requirements of the legislation are met (this could include - among other things - the need for a Labour Market Impact Assessment and/or satisfying an official that the individual remains a bonafide temporary resident). Applications that have not yet received a decision will benefit from these changes. Applications that have been refused prior to December 13th on the basis of the four year limitation will remain closed, but there may be the opportunity to apply for Restoration of Status for those who have been out of status for 90 days or less). In other cases, a new work permit application may be needed.