Canada Self-Employed Immigration

The government of Canada, as well as the government of the province of Quebec, provide immigration programs for individuals who are self-employed in certain industries.

Federal Self-Employed Persons Program

In order to qualify for business immigration to Canada under the Self-Employed Persons Program, an applicant must demonstrate that he or she has relevant agricultural, artistic, or athletic experience that will allow the applicant to be successfully self-employed in Canada and to make a significant contribution to his or her field.

Quebec Self-Employed Category

The Quebec Self-Employed category of Canadian immigration was designed in order to allow qualified individuals the opportunity to obtain Canadian permanent residence provided that they can effectively establish themselves in the Province of Quebec by practising a trade or profession for their own account.

Canada Immigration – Self-Employed Person

Canada’s Self-Employed Persons Program allows eligible self-employed foreign nationals with relevant experience in cultural activities or athletics to establish themselves in Canada as permanent residents.

Candidates for the Self-Employed Persons Program must have the experience, intention and ability to make a “significant contribution” to Canada’s cultural life or sports in Canada.

Interested candidates must meet both the eligibility requirements and achieve the minimum a passing mark under the program’s selection criteria in order to be considered for immigration as a self-employed person.

There is no regulated minimum net worth requirement for the Self-Employed Persons Program. However, self-employed applicants must demonstrate that they have sufficient funds to settle in Canada along with their dependents and finance the work for which their selection is based.

Eligibility Requirements for the Self-Employed Persons Program

A self-employed person is defined as someone with relevant self-employed experience in a cultural or athletic activity.

A foreign national must first meet the Government of Canada’s definition of a self-employed person in order to be considered eligible for assessment.

Relevant experience consists of at least two years of experience either self-employed in or participating at a world-class level in cultural activities or athletics as defined by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Quebec Business Immigration – Self-Employed Worker

The Quebec Self-Employed Worker Program grants qualified individuals the opportunity to obtain permanent residence provided they can effectively establish themselves as an independent tradesperson or professional Quebec

NOTE: Quebec will accept 50 applications for selection under its Self-Employed Worker Program between November 1, 2019, and September 30, 2020. Candidates who can demonstrate advanced intermediate abilities in French oral expression and French oral comprehension by way of a MIFI-recognized language test are exempt from this cap and can apply at any time between November 1, 2019, and October 31, 2020.

About the Quebec Self-Employed Worker Program

Quebec welcomes self-employed foreign nationals interested in coming to Quebec to work as an independent tradesperson or professional. In addition to meeting the minimum requirements for the program, the Government of Quebec says the self-employed worker must accept the following conditions:

  • choose the means of work performance;
  • organize the work;
  • provide the required tools and equipment;
  • carry out most of the specialized duties; and
  • collect the profits and support the loss risks resulting from the work.

Requirements for the Quebec Self-Employed Worker Program

Quebec’s Immigration Ministry, the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI), says that foreign nationals interested in obtaining permanent residence in Quebec under the Self-Employed Worker Program must be at least 18 years of age and meet other program requirements.

To be considered for selection, self-employed workers based in Montreal must register a start-up deposit of $50,000 or more at a local financial institution. Candidates based in regions outside of Montreal will have to deposit at least $25,000.

All Self-Employed Worker Program candidates must meet the passing score under the Quebec Economic Class selection grid for the Quebec Self-Employed Program. Candidates will be awarded up to 99 points (112 points if accompanied by a spouse or common-law partner) for factors that include education level, professional experience, language proficiency in French and English, stay and family in Quebec, age, financial self-sufficiency, amount of deposit, and financial resources.

All Quebec Self-Employed Worker applicants must demonstrate the intention to reside in Quebec. During the review of an application, Quebec Self-employed candidates may be invited to attend a selection interview.