Extend a Study Permit in Canada

If an international student in Canada wants to continue studying for a period longer than their study permit’s validity, they need to apply for a study permit extension. To do so, they must submit an application to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to extend their stay in Canada as a student. This application must be submitted electronically, unless otherwise specified. The Canadian government requires that most temporary residence applications made from within Canada be made through electronic application, including:

Maintaining Status in Canada

It is important to adhere to the duration of your authorized stay in Canada before applying for a change in status. Additionally, you must comply with any conditions specified in your study permit, such as restrictions on work nature, maximum working hours per week, and duration of study. It is recommended that you carefully review your study permit and familiarize yourself with its conditions.

If you fail to apply for a renewal or change in status before your current status expires, you will need to leave Canada before applying to return. However, if you submit your application for renewal or change in status before your current status expires, you will be considered to be on “implied status” as a temporary resident until a decision has been made regarding your application. You must keep a copy of the documents proving that a status extension has been requested (proof of postage or courier delivery, an internet submission receipt, etc). If your status expires before a decision has been made, you will only be able to continue studying as long as you remain in Canada.

Please note that this rule only applies to applications for temporary residence. If you are applying for permanent residence, you will not be allowed to stay in Canada until a decision has been made unless you have a valid temporary status as a visitor, student, or worker.

If you lose your status in Canada by failing to comply with the conditions of your study permit, you may apply for a restoration of status within 90 days of losing such status.

Changing your school or program

International students who are studying in Canada are allowed to change their educational institution (DLI) after arriving in Canada on a study permit. However, it is important to follow the correct procedure to avoid any issues with study permit compliance.

Students can change their DLI at different stages, such as while their study permit application is in progress, after their study permit is approved (but they are still outside Canada), or after arriving in Canada and obtaining their study permit. The change can be made before starting classes for the intake they were admitted to, or even after completing the first semester.

International students usually have around 150 days from the time they stop attending classes at their current institution to enroll in a course at a different DLI.

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