Word around for years continually suggests that Canada remains one of the top countries where small businesses thrive with numerous opportunities. There’s more than an iota of truth in these suggestions because clearly the westernized country boasts of an outstanding skilled labor force, well-maintained natural resources, and, of course, a sustainable government.
Investors looking to migrate their businesses to Canada have multiple Investor and Entrepreneur Visa options available for grabs. Interestingly, there’s more room to accommodate foreign startups with the general Start-up Visa Program designed to welcome their ideas and business ventures into Canada. If the business immigration application goes well, their families could immigrate with them as well.
Canada continues to welcome startups with adequate entrepreneurial skills, talents, experiences, and innovative ideas to carry out their businesses in the country. The Government of Canada strongly believes in the continual success and development of its economy through diversifying partnerships with foreign investors. Let’s get a bit practical by highlighting the various Entrepreneur & Investor Visa options for businesspersons looking to migrate to Canada.
Qualifying for a self-employed immigration program in Canada isn’t as complicated as most persons may assume. To be eligible for the program, the self-employed applicant must showcase relevant artistic skills or exhibit exceptional athletic abilities that qualify them as being self-employed in their home country. Candidates have better chances of getting their self-employed immigration applications approved when they show intermediate or expert skills in their relevant fields.
In the Canadian self-employed immigration program, applicants with at least two years of experience are considered fit for the craftsmanship the economy needs. The two-year experience on any relevant skill must fall within a five-year timeframe before the time of application and decision date. Self-employed immigrants with exceptional artistic and athletic skills stand to get more points for the program when they have between 3-5 years of experience in these fields.
At the very least, self-employed immigrants’ experience must be:
All applicants of the self-employed immigration program must:
NB: Candidates can only score a maximum of 100 points with 35 points as the current minimum average for qualification into the program. This may change in the long run.
This immigration visa program specifically addresses the undeniable need for interested foreign investors to start up a business anywhere in Canada. Interested applicants and their businesses would, of course, have to meet the requirements of the start-up immigration visa program to qualify for the process. For starters, the intended business or idea must create jobs for Canadians, be of globally competitive standards, and innovative.
Since the application sometimes drags out over a couple of months, start-up visa applicants can apply for temporary work permits pending their application approval.
The Start-up Immigration Visa Program targets immigrant entrepreneurs with the skills and potential to build and run businesses in Canada that:
Immigrant entrepreneurs must position their businesses or ideas for qualifications to meet the following requirements:
They hold at least 10% of the voting rights which go alongside the shares of the organization at a certain duration. Making it possible for a maximum of five persons to apply as owners of the organization and as beneficiaries.
Both the applicants and designated corporation hold a combined voting power of at least 50% with respect to the shares at the time of application.
Must be ready to attend to all managerial responsibilities of the business within Canada
The major part of the business’s operations are coordinated and carried out in Canada
Incorporation of the business in Canada
Immigrant entrepreneurs’ acclaimed commitment to a designated organization isn’t enough to qualify them for the start-up visa program. Getting a letter of support from the designated organization is of the essence when applying for a start-up visa in Canada. Designated organizations are approved business groups spread across Canada to invest and lend support to start-up businesses.
To get the support letter, immigrant entrepreneurs will have to:
The letter of support should be attached to the application before submission otherwise the immigrant entrepreneur’s application would remain unattended. Applicants need a letter of support for proof of authentication that the investor group or venture capital fund backs their business ideas. Alongside the letter of support, the designated organization is also obligated to forward a commitment certificate to CIC. Both documentations (the commitment certificate and letter of support) would be required to process the applicant’s start-up visa.
All applicants are expected to meet the least level requirements of the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) in either French or English languages. Candidates should be fluent in these areas:
Startup business owners coming into Canada should be aware of the fact that the Canadian government would never extend financial assistance to them. During application, the CIC would request proof of financial sustainability from every immigrant entrepreneur looking to acquire their start-up visa. Borrowing funds to meet this requirement is not acceptable. The minimum amounts required of startup businesses are usually updated annually.
Immigrant entrepreneurs can expect positive results from their start-up visa program applications if they:
Applicants should be on the watch for notifications from the CIC on request for additional documentation, information, or interview (if required). The CIC would reach out requesting that the passport of approved applicants be sent to their respected visa offices for the processing of their permanent resident visa.
Acquiring permanent residency in Canada via buying, investing, or launching a business in Ontario has to be one of two options – the Ontario Entrepreneur Stream or the Ontario Corporate Stream.
Interested immigrant entrepreneurs peculiar about starting their businesses to serve the residents and citizens of Newfoundland and Labrador have two visa options to explore – the International Graduate Entrepreneur and International Entrepreneur streams.
Contact CanUS Immigration Advisor today to determine the best program and your eligibility based on your needs for a business immigration program.
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