You may have done some digging into how to immigrate to Canada as a permanent resident, and noticed that unless you are coming to Canada while being sponsored by a family member or loved one, or applying for refugee status, almost all paths to permanent residency require the applicant to have a valid job offer before they will be able to apply successfully. Though, if you are a self-employed individual, it may not be in your agenda to work as an employee. You may see a keen opportunity to open your business in Canada, and you may want to act now. If this is the case, you should be aware the options are minimal, but there are ways in which you can immigrate to Canada as a self-employed individual. Throughout this article, we will work to help you understand how to go about immigrating to Canada as a self-employed individual.
Well, as the name suggests, it is the way in which a self-employed individual immigrates to Canada, not because they have a valid job offer to support their permanent residency, but because they have promised to start a business upon their arrival in Canada and proved to be capable of doing so to an immigration officer when applying for permanent residency. To be eligible for this program, there are fairly strict requirements, though, this program is not to be overlooked; it presents a very unique opportunity to immigrate to Canada. Specifically, an individual who wishes to apply through the Self-employed immigration program must have relevant experience in cultural activities or athletics. These are the areas of the Canadian economy the Canadian government has determined are in need of assistance self-employed immigration can offer, whereas other sectors are not in need of assistance.
Well, it almost goes without saying, but the first requirement of this immigration stream is that the applicant is willing and able to be self-employed within Canada, and this can be proved to an immigration officer. Then, you must have relevant experience, which will be dependent on the type of business you intend to open upon immigrating to Canada. You must also pass medical exams and security background checks. In fact, it is important for future applicants to be aware; the Canadian government is expanding biometric requirements to additional nations. As of July 31, 2018, you will need to give your fingerprints and photo (biometrics) each time you apply for permanent residence if you are from Europe, the Middle East or Africa. Finally, you must meet the selection criteria for self-employed people, and actually be selected to immigrate to Canada.
The term “selection criteria” is fairly vague. Allow us to break it down for you. Citizenship and Immigration Canada will assess your application on the following criteria. The better you can show competence in each of these categories, the more likely it is you will be invited to apply for permanent residence through the self-employed immigration stream. The categories are as follows:
Ultimately, you will be assessed on these criteria, and also your ability to produce a business plan that will satisfy an officer of your intentions in Canada, and to show that your business is likely to have success. To help prove you have a good chance of success in Canada, you could use proof of previous work or completed projects as an indication of what you can be expected to contribute to the Canadian economy in the long-term.
You must have two years of relevant experience within the period of 5 years before the day you apply for the self-employed immigration stream. To be considered relevant, the experience must be within the field you intend to open a business. For example, if you would like to open a business which qualifies as promoting cultural activities, you must have two years total experience being self-employed in cultural activities, or, participating at a world-class level in cultural activities, or a combination of the two, within the 5 year period before you apply. Or, for example, if you would like to open a business which qualifies as promoting athletics, you must have two years total experience being self-employed in athletics, or, participating at a world class level in athletics, or a combination of the two.
Unfortunately, as of March 10, 2018, the Canadian government is no longer accepting new applications under the farm management stream of the Self-Employed Person Program. We hope this stream will return soon, as it is truly a shame to see it close.
Cost. It is always important to know cost. For this particular application, there is a $1050CAD non-refundable processing fee which accompanies your application. This must be paid before the application is submitted, and applies whether the application is approved or refused. In addition to this, there is a $490CAD non-refundable right of permanent resident fee you must pay if your application is approved and you are permitted to enter Canada as a permanent resident. Finally, if there are any additional children or partners accompanying, there will be additional fees for this as well.
It is essential that you have taken all of the aforementioned important information in consideration prior to applying under the self-employed category of Immigration. Applying under this category can be an extremely complicated task to accomplish on your own because you are required to prove to an immigration officer you will be beneficial to the Canadian economy; therefore, it is highly recommended that you seek out professional and experienced help before attempting to submit the application. Here, at Akrami & Associates, we work and have experience with many different immigration issues. We have helped many of our clients become permanent residents under the self-employed category. If you believe that you might be eligible, 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 advise.
With Akrami and Associates, there is Always a Way!