Shabnam Akrami Blogs

Shabnam Akrami is the Managing Partner and Founder of Akrami & Associates.

FAQs for the Entrepreneur Program

FAQs for the Entrepreneur Program

FAQs – Entrepreneur Program

In this article, I will address a few popular questions and answers for the Entrepreneur Program and some important information to consider when applying for this program. The Entrepreneur Program was created and intended for foreign nationals who have appropriate business experience and who can provide ongoing management for a qualified Canadian business. Additionally, they must also have a net worth of a minimum of $300,000 CAD. If you are a skilled foreign national and would like to apply for the Entrepreneur Program, I suggest you read our article on “Canadian Business Immigration” before reading this question and answer article. The intention of this article is meant to clarify any misunderstanding or confusion with regards to the Entrepreneur Program.

Q: What are the eligibility requirements for the Entrepreneur Program?

A: In order to qualify under the Entrepreneur Program, you must have these eligibility requirements:

  • You must intend to reside anywhere in Canada with the exception of Quebec
  • You must have a net worth of a minimum of $300,000 CAD that has been obtained lawfully
  • You must have managerial and ownership experience in a qualified business
  • You must either establish or acquire a qualifying Canadian business or enterprise that you must actively manage and own - The ownership must be at least 33.33% of equity
  • You must create at least one employment opportunity for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident within your business or enterprise

Keep in mind, the eligibility requirements are much different for Quebec as they have an entirely different immigration system.

Q: How do I determine whether my business or enterprise is a “qualifying business”?

A: In order to determine whether your business or enterprise is a “qualifying business,” you must ensure that adequate “business experience” has taken place at the business. Additionally, you must also ensure that the business is not a business for deriving investment income such as capital gains, interest, and dividends. Lastly, the business must have evidence of the applicant’s consistent participation in the business and must be provided for at least two business participation attributes, for instance employment and total annual sales.

Q: If I am granted permanent residency under the Entrepreneur Program, are there any conditions that I must abide by?

A: Yes, there are conditions that you must abide by if you are granted permanent residency under the Entrepreneur Program. When a foreign national is given permanent residency in Canada, they must control and own a percentage of equity of a qualified Canadian business or enterprise which must be equal or greater than one-third; effectively manage the qualified Canadian business; and, establish and create at least one employment opportunity for a Canadian citizen or permanent resident within your business or enterprise. Keep in mind, the employment opportunity must be for anyone but the Entrepreneur and their family members. Additionally, this all must be completed within three years of landing in Canada as a permanent resident. It is important to note that if the Entrepreneur does not fulfill these conditions, then they are subject to having their permanent residency status removed.

Q: What kind of documents do I need to submit when applying for the Entrepreneur Program?

A: There are many documents and information that you must provide to Immigration Canada when applying under the Entrepreneur Program. Of course, you must ensure that the application forms have the appropriate information that is being requested and have been accurately and completely filled out. Apart from the forms, you must also include documentation such as a personal net worth statement, your business balance sheet; financial statements for your business; and, corporate employee payroll documents. By providing all of these documents to Immigration, you are showing the accounting of your assets and liabilities. It also aids the Immigration officer in determining whether you are eligible and indeed have the required business experience to be an entrepreneur in Canada.

Q: Should an Entrepreneur visit Canada prior to applying for the Entrepreneur Program?

A: Yes, an Entrepreneur should visit Canada prior to applying for the Entrepreneur Program. By visiting Canada prior to applying, it will give the Entrepreneur the opportunity to explore Canada’s business environment and opportunities. Additionally, it will also give the Entrepreneur an idea of where they would like to have their business located. It is very important to research the location of where you would like to establish your business ahead of time before applying for the Entrepreneur Program.

Q: Am I required to submit a detailed business plan if I am applying as an Entrepreneur to Canada?

A: You are required to submit a detailed business plan only if you are applying as an Entrepreneur to Canada in the province of Quebec. If you are intending to establish and/or acquire a business or enterprise in the province of Quebec, then this will be an essential component of your application. However, if you are applying from anywhere else in Canada, you are not required to submit a detailed business plan. Yet, it is very beneficial to have a business plan regardless if you are submitting it or not.

Contact Akrami & Associates

Should you have any further questions or feel confused or unclear about how to apply for permanent residency under the Entrepreneur Program, it is important to talk about any questions you may have and discuss your concerns. By talking to immigration professionals about your concerns, this will ease your worries and assist with the application process. Many immigration applications are difficult to pursue on your own and it is highly recommended that you seek out professional and experienced help before attempting to apply. Here, at Akrami & Associates, we work and have experience with many different immigration issues. We have helped our clients apply for permanent residency under the Entrepreneur Program. If you believe that you may be eligible to apply under this program, please feel free to contact Akrami & Associates at our office at 416-477-2545 for more information or if you would like to book a consultation with an immigration professional for more advice.

With Akrami & Associates, there is always a way!

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