Frequently Asked Canada Immigration Business Class Questions (FAQ)> Immigration Categories > FAQ > Business Class
7.1 What is the Business Class Program?
The Business Class is a category of immigration under which persons with business/managerial experience and certain net worth may apply for Canadian Permanent Resident status. Canada has three types of business immigrants: Investors, Entrepreneurs and Self Employed Immigrants.
7.2 What documents must a Business Class applicants submit?
Along with government application forms, education and statutory documents (diplomas, passports, birth certificates), Business Class applicants must provide documents evidencing their financial position and previous business experience.
7.3 Are the requirements of the Province of Quebec for business applications different from those of Canada?
The Province of Quebec has its own criteria for assessing business applications. which may differ from those described on this web site.
7.4 How can I qualify as an Immigrant Investor?
An Immigrant Investor planning to reside anywhere in Canada, except Quebec, has to meet the following criteria:
have successfully operated, controlled or directed a business. Many applicants use documents such as business registration documents, tax records, partnership agreements, company annual reports or financial statements for this purpose;
have accumulated, by your own endeavours, a personal net worth of at least $800,000 Canadian dollars. You may be required to submit bank statements or certificates, property deeds, business valuations, share certificates or similar documents for this purpose;
invest CAD$400,000 for five years with Citizenship and Immigration Canada which acts as agent on behalf of provincial and territorial investment funds.
As an applicant destined for Quebec, you must:
have at least three years of managerial experience in a profitable business; or
have at least three years of managerial experience in a government, governmental organization or international organization;
have accumulated through their own efforts a net worth of at least $800,000 Canadian dollars;
have made an investment of $400,000 Canadian dollars, paid to Quebec approved investment fund.
7.5 When Immigrant Investor commits his/her $400,000 investment?
You can make your CAD$400,000 payment any time after you have submitted your immigration application. The investment must be made before an immigrant visa can be issued. If you have not done so and your visa is ready, you will be notified by a visa officer that your immigration application has met all requirements other than the investment. You will then have 30 days to make the payment.
7.6 How can an Immigrant Investor prove that he/she earned the $800,000 “by his/her own endeavours”?
Immigrant Investor applicants must demonstrate the origin and accumulation of their wealth through reliable, third party documentary evidence: tax returns, pay stubs, deeds of purchase/sale, statements from stockbrokers, business/real estate valuations, etc.
7.7 Can an Immigrant Investor borrow all or part of the $400,000?
Yes, financing is permissible. It is your responsibility to make these arrangements, but Citizenship and Immigration Canada will confirm any security arrangements with your lender at its request.
7.8 What happens to investment if an Immigrant Investor application is refused?
You must request reimbursement of your money in writing. The visa office will provide the address in Canada in your refusal letter. Your money will be returned 90 days after your request is received.
7.9 Could any kind of investment be made in order to qualify?
No, to qualify for immigration as an investor, $400,000 Canadian dollars must be paid to the Receiver General for Canada. There are no other investment options, other than Quebec's immigration investor program, which is only available to immigrants intending to reside in Quebec.
7.10 What forms must be completed to enable an Immigrant Investor to make $400,000 payment.
You must read the Subscription Agreement, an important document describing your rights and responsibilities as an investor. Send two signed copies with your payment. The visa office will send you these documents if you have met all immigration requirements except for the payment.
7.11 Is an Immigrant Investor' investment guaranteed? When will an investment be returned?
Yes, immigrant investors will be repaid the full $400,000 of their investment. The investment is fully guaranteed by provinces and territories that participate in the program. CIC will repay an investor's $400,000 (without interest) in five years. The exact date of repayment depends on when the $400,000 is received by Citizenship and Immigration Canada. At the latest, the amount would be returned 5 years and 3 months from the date of payment.
7.12 Are there any "terms and conditions" imposed on Immigrant Investor' visa?
Investor visas normally do not include "terms and conditions". Investor, however, are expected to commit their $400,000 payment for a five year period. They should also contribute to the Canadian economy by using their business skills in Canada.
7.13 How can I qualify as an Immigrant Entrepreneur?
To qualify as an Immigrant Entrepreneur, you must:
have a a minimum net worth of CDN $300,000
intend and have the ability to invest in a business;
be ready to establish, purchase or make a substantial investment in a business or commercial venture in Canada;
make a significant contribution to the economy;
be able to employ at least one other Canadian citizen or permanent resident; and
intend and have the ability to provide active and on going participation in the management.
7.14 How much money must I have to qualify as an Immigrant Entrepreneur?
There are no minimum net worth requirements, an entrepreneur require enough money to start a business in Canada. The system is flexible so that applicants who do not have a comparatively high net worth may qualify. You must show by your qualifications, experience, and business plans that you intend to and are able to establish a business. This business must bring significant economic benefits to Canada. The ability to meet this test, not the amount of money you have, is the determining factor.
7.15 Does it count against an Immigrant Entrepreneur if he/she never owned a business ?
While experience in owning a successful business certainly helps your chances of meeting the entrepreneur definition, it is not essential. You should, however, be able to show significant business management experience and potential to qualify.
7.16 How does an Immigrant Entrepreneur prove qualifications and experience to the visa officer?
During the Selection Interview an immigration officer will ask to clarify any inconsistencies, ambiguities, shortcomings, or gaps in those business documents you will provide with your application.
7.17 Must an Immigrant Entrepreneur make an exploratory visit to Canada prior to submission of an application?
For an Entrepreneur applicant an exploratory visit is not a requirement, but many applicants find one beneficial. Such a visit gives you a chance to meet with provincial officials and learn first hand about living and doing business in Canada.
7.18 Must an Immigrant Entrepreneur submit a detailed business plan with his/her application?
No. Selection is based on the qualities of the applicant, not on the business proposal. You must simply submit a brief outline of the type of business you propose to establish and your general plans for operating it. The visa officer may ask additional questions about your business plans to help assess your ability to meet the definition of an entrepreneur.
7.19 What role do provincial governments have in the entrepreneurial immigration process?
Except for Quebec, provincial officials are not directly involved. Visa officers representing the federal government make the final selection decision on all applications of persons not intending to live in Quebec. However, most provinces are eager to meet with prospective entrepreneurial applicants to provide guidance, counseling, and information about their business development needs and assistance programs.
7.20 What "terms and conditions" imposed on Immigrant Entrepreneur' visa?
The "terms and conditions" will be printed on visa and must be meat within two years period of admission to Canada. Generally they are:
the entrepreneur must actively manage the business, and the business must create employment opportunities for others;
the business must make a significant contribution to the economy; and
all family members are admitted under the same "terms and conditions" as the principal applicant. The "terms and conditions" are removed once the entrepreneur sets up a significant business venture, hires at least one employee, and is actively involved in managing the business.
During this two year period an Immigrant Entrepreneur must report to the immigration officials at regular intervals. The applicable details will be provided with an immigration visa. The civil rights and status of an immigrant and his her family are not affected by these terms and conditions during two year period. However, failure to meet the requirements by the end of two years may result in visa be revoked. Efforts to comply with these terms and conditions must be demonstrated to an immigration official throughout the two year period. Entrepreneurs will be required to report their progress to immigration officials on a regular basis during this two year period.
7.21 Can these conditions be removed?
Once the immigration officials determined that an Immigrant Entrepreneur have met the "terms and conditions" the conditions will be removed. This can be done at any time during the two year period.