International Workers Legal Fund (I.W.L.F.)


The International Workers Legal Fund (I.W.L.F.) covers eligible legal expenses for members who are experiencing legal troubles related to their visa and/or immigration status that interfere with their ability to perform their Unit 1 work.

*This is a member driven fund that came out of members needs. If you identify as in the group this fund intends to serve and have constructive feedback, please write to the Secretary Treasurer.*

Who is eligible to apply to the fund?

For the January 1, 2018-April 30, 2019 round of the I.W.L.F., anyone who meets the following criteria is eligible to apply: (a) You have secured at least 1 hour of Unit 1 work by the time the application is made or have a guaranteed subsequent appointment. (b) You are an international member experiencing legal troubles related to your visa and/or immigration status that interfere with your ability to perform your Unit 1 work.

What is an eligible expense?

This fund is intended to assist members with legal costs associated with an emergency situation such as deportation. It is not meant to cover costs associated with applying for permanent residency or citizenship, applying for or renewing a visa, or routine legal costs related to immigration. Members are invited to submit claims for any expenses they consider eligible. All claims will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Examples of eligible expenses include: legal fees related to an emergency immigration situation, associated filing fees, childcare needed to make legal appointments, transportation to and from appointments, lost wages for days in court. 

Expenses incurred on or after January 1, 2018, but prior to the adoption of the C.A.I.C. proposal, will be eligible for reimbursement. This means the funds will run for an extended first year, from January 1, 2018 to April 30, 2019.

How much money will I get?

The I.W.L.F. has been allocated $25,000 per year. The fund will disburse, per member, up to an annual cap of $5,000 and a lifetime cap of $15,000. If there are monies left over after the fund has reimbursed all eligible claims, the remainder of the monies will be reallocated to the U.S.A.F. for that year.

When will I get my money?

Applications for this fund will be open year-round, on an as-needed basis. Disbursements will follow within one month of successful application.

How do I apply?

The application form is available online and accessible through the Union’s website. To find the application, login to the Member Portal (found by scrolling up to the top right of this page).

A complete application for the I.W.L.F. will include: (a) a membership card, (b) the 2018-19 I.W.L.F. Application Form (available by clicking here), and (c) supporting documentation—this documentation should include a statement outlining the need for which funding is being requested, and any other supporting documentation you may have (e.g., invoices for legal fees).

You will receive an immediate confirmation email for each application you submit. PLEASE NOTE: if you do not receive a confirmation email you did not successfully submit the application.

If you do not have (a) a membership card (i.e., you do not have a CUPE No., found on the left-hand side of the Portal home page), fill out a Membership Application Form (found on the ‘Forms’ tab). PLEASE NOTE: processing membership applications can take up to four (4) business days.


Applications will be accepted between October 1, 2018 and April 30, 2019.