There are opportunities for self-employed individuals to use their business or self-employment to immigrate to Canada. This might be either as a temporary or permanent resident.
This article will walk you through the programmes and pathways you should focus on to move to Canada as a self-employed person.
Six Ways to move to Canada as a self-employed person
1. Express Entry Program
Canada launched the Express Entry program in 2015 to handle applications for permanent residency from skilled professionals who want to live in Canada permanently. Thousands of people receive invitations to apply for permanent residency in Canada each year through one of the three (3) Express Entry subcategories.
Express Entry is the most popular programme for applying for permanent residence in Canada because it does not require a work offer in Canada. You can utilise job experience from your home country, work experience gained while you were a student abroad, or work experience gained after finishing your studies in your present country when submitting an Express Entry application for permanent residency.
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The best thing is that the work experience can even be as a self-employed person.
You are set to go as long as you have proof that you are a business owner or self-employed and that your job falls under the definition of a skilled job in Canada.
Documents to provide as proof of self-employment include:
- Certificate of incorporation
- Certificate of business registration
- Certificate of good business conduct
- Proof of online presence (website, social media pages) for your business
- Business financial statement
- Tax return
- Audit report
- Business licenses
- Portfolio of work
- References from past clients, industry leaders, etc
Provide as many of these documents above and other pieces of evidence that will demonstrate that you actually completed the job or are currently doing the work.
2. Provincial Nomination Programs
Programmes for Provincial Nominees (PNPs) have two main objectives;
- They can help you raise your Express Entry ranking. Your Express Entry score is increased by 600 points if you are nominated as an Express Entry applicant.
- Even without an Express Entry profile, you can utilise them to immigrate to Canada. There are distinct nomination processes in some provinces that are not compatible with Express Entry. Additionally, they do this by using these to bring foreign nationals to Canada as permanent residents.
Canada consists of 10 provinces and 3 territories, and each of these provinces has its own standards for nominations. So, spend some time browsing each province’s website to learn more. Additionally, look for a province where you fit for their programme.
Similarly to the Express Entry Programme, you can utilise your self-employed business to apply for provincial nominee programmes.
3. Federal Self-Employed Program
The Self-employed Persons Programme allows people to immigrate to Canada as self-employed individuals.
If you want to participate in this programme, you must:
- have appropriate experience in cultural activities or athletics, and be willing and able to contribute significantly to Canada’s cultural or athletic life.
The program’s eligibility requirements indicate that you must:
- Have appropriate experience.
- be willing and able to work for yourself in Canada.
meet the program’s selection standards as well as medical, security, and other requirements
Your experience is relevant, and you must have at least two years of experience beginning five years before the day you apply.
What do “cultural activities” entail under the Self-Employed Persons Program?
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Cultural activities include jobs generally seen as part of Canada’s artistic and cultural fields. Examples include:
- authors and writers,
- creative and performing artists,
- sculptors and other visual artists,
- technical support and other jobs in motion pictures,
- creative designers and
You can also do this if you are self-employed in any of these fields or an athlete.
More information about the programme and how to apply may be found here.
4. Federal Start-up Program
The Federal Start-up Visa programme enables you to immigrate to Canada by starting a business, creating jobs, or assisting innovative entrepreneurs.
The Start-up Visa Programme in Canada seeks immigrant entrepreneurs who have the abilities and capacity to establish enterprises in Canada that:
are innovative, capable of creating jobs for Canadians, and capable of competing on a global scale
Do you have a novel business concept? You might be able to immigrate to Canada if one of the designated organisations agrees to sponsor your plan.
So, if you founded a business in your current country and want to scale it abroad or relocate it to Canada, now is your chance to do so and become a permanent resident. More information on the programme can be found here.
5. Provincial Entrepreneur Programs
There are business and investment programs for business owners or people who want to establish firms in every province in Canada, similar to the Federal establish-up Visa programme.
It could be an opportunity for you to reproduce your self-employed business and launch a comparable business or endeavour in Canada.
The 10 provinces in Canada have their own special rules for those who plan to create a business in their province and utilise that as a pathway to permanent status.
Pay close attention to the amount of money to invest and the predicted net worth.
6. Study in Canada
You can apply to study in Canada from anywhere in the world, regardless of where you currently live or your previous experience. This is true at any level of education.
In Canada, there are numerous colleges and universities offering numerous programmes of study. Self-employed individuals can hone their abilities in fields such as hairstyling, carpentry, welding, electrical work, baking, culinary arts, masonry, and so on.
The advantage of studying in Canada is that you will be eligible for more permanent residence programmes than individuals who are not studying in Canada.
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