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I have question about visas and working in Canada.

My wife is going to study in Canada for a year or two so our 2 children and I are going with her as so-called "dependents" on her visa. We currently live in Japan, and I work remotely for a Swedish company as a software developer. I was wondering if it's possible to continue working on my current job, and if so, what the best way to do that is.

This link (which if I understand correctly is the official authority on immigration) says, on the subject of what isn't considered work,

long distance (by telephone or Internet) work done by a temporary resident whose employer is outside Canada and who is remunerated from outside Canada;

.. which I take as "as long as you get paid to a non-Canadian bank account it's fine since it won't be considered work". But I don't know for sure that my assumptions about Canadian immigration law are correct and it would be nice if there is somewhere I can get an official and unequivocal answer to this instead of later finding out I'm in legal trouble. I also don't know if "funneling" my salary through a non-Canadian bank account into a Canadian one is considered perfectly legal, or if going about it this way will close any doors when it comes to getting another visa in the future - I'd rather pay taxes in Canada and get paid into a Canadian bank account since that will be cheaper, more convenient and feel more reasonable but that seems to be a dealbreaker.

Is there somewhere I can get a confirmation that this is a valid approach? (or does anyone know a reason why it wouldn't be?)

  • If it is deemed illegal working, ‘funnelling’ your salary through a non-Canadian bank would be money laundering. – Traveller Jul 23 at 16:42
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You reading too much into the rule, just stick to what is written instead. As written, it said that it is not considered work for immigration purpose if all conditions fulfilled:

  1. You do your work in long distance manner to a site outside Canada (basically this means that you have no unique advantage of being in Canada).
  2. The employer you do work for is outside Canada.
  3. The remuneration source is outside Canada.

Therefore, the destination of remuneration does not matter. Your employer can even pay directly to your account in Canadian Bank (if you can manage to get one).

Keep in mind that tax law is entirely separate and this immigration rule has no effect whatsoever for your tax. Basically if you have residential ties in Canada (dwelling or family), then you are Canadian resident for tax purposes and have to pay tax like a Canadian resident (whole world income), unless there is a tax treaty that preclude you from that.

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