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Live-In Caregiver Program

If you are interested in working in Canada as a nanny, caregiver or au pair, the Live-in Caregiver Program may be suitable for you.

Live-in caregivers are individuals who are qualified to provide care for children, elderly persons or persons with disabilities in private homes without supervision. Live-in caregivers must live in the private home of their employer in Canada.

There are four main requirements you must meet to qualify under the Live-in Caregiver Program:

  • You must have successfully completed the equivalent of a Canadian high school education.
  • You must have six months of full-time training in a classroom setting or twelve months of full-time paid employment, including at least six months of continuous employment, within the past 3 years, with one employer in a field or occupation related to the job you are seeking as a live-in caregiver.
  • You must be able to speak, read and understand either English or French at a level that allows you to function independently in a home setting.
  • You must have a written employment contract between you and your future employer. The contract defines your job duties, hours of work, salary and benefits.

Obtaining an offer of employment in Canada

In order to work in Canada as a live-in caregiver, you must first locate a prospective employer in Canada. The visa office cannot assist you in locating an employer in Canada. You are not required to use a placement agency for the purpose of locating an employer.

Once you have located a prospective employer in Canada who wishes to employ a live-in caregiver, your employer must send a request to the Human Resources and Social Development Canada (HRSDC) /Service Canada.

HRSDC/Service Canada will then provide a labour market opinion (LMO) to the employer and Citizenship and Immigration Canada. The LMO is an assessment of the likely impact that the hiring of the foreign worker may have on the Canadian labour market. Your employer should send a copy of the LMO to you.

You both must then sign an employer–employee contract that meets the labour standards and working conditions in the province where you will be working.

Information specific to individuals applying from the Philippines

Below is further information on requirements for the Live-In Caregiver Program which is specific to individuals applying from the Philippines.

Successful completion of the equivalent of a Canadian high school education

A person graduates from high school in Canada (other than Québec) after 12 years of education. Since high school diplomas in the Philippines are generally obtained after a total of only ten (10) years of schooling, at least two (2) years of post-secondary education, in which the student has obtained at least 72 units of credit, would be necessary to meet this requirement.

This requirement will help to ensure that applicants for permanent residence will be able to succeed in the general labour market. Studies indicate that the majority of new jobs in Canada require at least a high school education. 

Successful Completion of Related Training or Experience

Your training or experience should be in early childhood education, geriatric care, or pediatric nursing, to name just a few areas. If you are a licensed registered nurse, with experience, you are normally considered to meet this requirement.


In order to qualify, the six-month training course must have been completed as part of formal education taken at an institution accredited by the local education authority. In the Philippines, TESDA (Technical Education and Skills Development Authority) is the "local authority.” To verify if a particular training school has the necessary accreditation, please refer to the TESDA website.

In addition to being TESDA-accredited, your training must also comply with the requirements of Canadian immigration legislation and policy. Full-time training must be completed within a period of at least six months with a minimum of 25 hours per week in a classroom setting. Time spent performing on-the-job training or a practicum is not considered part of your required training, even though this may be a TESDA requirement. Correspondence courses, evening and weekend classes are also not considered as "full time."

NOTE: If your classroom training is less than 6 months, this will result in the refusal of your application.

As a quality control measure, embassy officials periodically monitor caregiver training institutions to ensure that the schools meet the requirements of the Canadian legislation and policy. If your caregiver school does not meet the required standards, you may be deemed not to have met the Program’s requirements and your application may be refused.

A number of institutions in the Philippines have developed a "six month caregiver course." These are in no way affiliated with, or accredited or certified by the Canadian Government or the Embassy of Canada.

It is recommended that you exercise due diligence in choosing a training centre. The onus is on you to verify that the school is not only TESDA accredited, but also that the training complies with the requirements of Canadian immigration legislation and policy.

Employment experience

In order to meet the criteria for experience, you must have completed one year of full-time paid employment, including at least six months of continuous employment with one employer, in that field or occupation. Your experience must have been obtained within the three years immediately prior to the day you submit your application for a Work Permit.

Ability to speak, read and understand either English or French

You must be able to function independently in a home setting. For example, you must be able to contact emergency services if required and to understand labels on medication. Caregivers will be unsupervised for most of the day and may be put in a position of having to communicate with someone outside the home. A good knowledge of English or French will also enable you to read and understand your rights and obligations as a Temporary Foreign Worker in Canada.

Please be advised that you are encouraged to undertake language proficiency testing (IELTS or TEF) and provide the results as this is the best way to provide proof of language skills. Information regarding these examinations is available online at IELTS and TEF.

Valid employment contract with your prospective employer

The contract defines your job duties, hours of work, salary and benefits. The contract also reinforces your employer's legal responsibilities towards you. This requirement helps provide a fair working arrangement between you and your employer. It also provides each of you with a clear understanding of what is expected of the other. The employer will send the proposed contract to you for review and signature before the job offer is validated by Service Canada/Human Resources & Skills Development Canada.

An important requirement of the program is that you must live in the home where the person being cared for resides. Also, the employer must be able to show that they are able to fulfill the stipulations of the contract (for example, the employer must show that they are able to pay your wages based on the amount agreed and provide you with a private bedroom with a lock and key).

NOTE: In determining the income required to hire you, the visa officer makes a decision based on the information supplied by the Service Canada/Human Resources and Skills Development Canada Labour Market Opinion (LMO), the caregiver, and the employer. This decision compares the declared household income and the family size of the employer (including any family members sponsored under the "Family Class" immigration category in the last 10 years) with the Low Income Cut Off (LICO) supplied by Statistics Canada plus the expected annual salary of the caregiver. For more information on LICO, please visit CIC.

Applying for a work permit

The signed contract is part of the documentation that you must submit together with your application. Once you have obtained that signed contract and a positive labour market opinion (LMO), your next step is for you to apply for a work permit at this visa office. Please refer to how to apply for a work permit for details.

Medical Exam

All applicants who apply for a work permit must complete a medical examination. You will be advised regarding this requirement after we have completed our initial review of your application.

The doctor will notify us directly of the result, and if there are no medical or other concerns, the work permit will be issued.

Pre-departure Requirements

As required by the Government of the Philippines for all Filipinos working abroad, you will have to attend an orientation seminar and obtain an exit permit from the Philippine Overseas Employment Authority (POEA). Then you may proceed to Canada to work.


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