Self-employed Visa to Canada

How to immigrate to Canada as a Self-employed person

Canada startup visa infographic

Canada Start-up Visa – Infographic Description


Prove your business idea is supported by a designated investor organization (Get letter of support).

Each applicant must hold at least 10 percent of the voting rights in the business, and the designated organization and the applicants must jointly hold more than 50 percent of the voting rights in the business.

You must secure a minimum investment of $200,000 if the investment comes from a designated Canadian venture capital fund:

BCD Venture Capital

Blackberry Partners Fund II LP (doing business as Relay Ventures Fund II)

Celtic House Venture Partners

Celtic House Venture Partners Fund III L.P.

Celtic House Venture Partners Fund IV LP

DRI Capital Inc.

Golden Opportunities Fund Inc.

iNovia Capital Inc.

New Brunswick Innovation Foundation Inc. / Fondation de l’innovation du Nouveau-Brunswick Inc.

Northwater Intellectual Property Fund

OMERS Ventures Management Inc.

Pangaea Ventures Fund III, LP

PRIVEQ Capital Funds

PRIVEQ III Limited Partnership

PRIVEQ IV Limited Partnership

Quorum Group

Advantage Growth (No.2) L.P.

Ontario SME Capital Corporation

Quorum Investment Pool Limited Partnership

Quorum Secured Equity Trust

Rho Canada Ventures

Summerhill Venture Partners Management Inc.

Tandem Expansion Management Inc.

Vanedge Capital Limited Partnership

Version One Ventures

Wellington Financial LP

Westcap Mgt. Ltd.

Yaletown Venture Partners Inc.

Or, you must secure a minimum investment of $75,000 if the investment comes from a designated Canadian angel investor group:

Angel One Network Inc.

First Angel Network Association

Golden Triangle Angel Network

Designated business incubator

To be eligible for the start-up visa, you must be accepted into one of the following designated Canadian business incubator programs:

Canada Accelerator Co (d/b/a HIGHLINE)


Empowered Startups Ltd.

Extreme Innovations

INcubes Inc.


Innovate Calgary

Interactive Niagara Media Cluster o/a Innovate Niagara

Knowledge Park o/a Planet Hatch

LaunchPad PEI Inc.

Real Investment Fund III L.P. o/a FounderFuel

Ryerson Futures Inc.

Toronto Business Development Centre

Waterloo Accelerator Centre

Language Requirements

You must meet the minimum level of CLB 5 in either English or French for all four language abilities: speaking, reading, listening and writing.


You must provide proof of your education with your application. Specifically, you will need:

proof of having completed at least one year of post-secondary education

proof that you were in good standing during at least one year while you were attending a post‑secondary institution

Your proof of education may be in the form of transcripts and a letter of good standing, or certificate or diploma or degree.

Settlement funds

Number of Family Members Funds Required (in Canadian dollars)
1 $12,164
2 $15,143
3 $18,617
4 $22,603
5 $25,636
6 $28,913
7 or more $32,191

Self-employed persons


  1. Relevant experience as an artist, farmer or athlete
  2. Selection criteria

You will then be assessed against five selection criteria and a point system. You must obtain a minimum of 35 points if you want to immigrate to Canada as a business immigrant.

Selection criteria Maximum points
Education 25
Experience 35
Age 10
Ability in English and/or French 24
Adaptability 6
  1. Medical, security requirements

You and your family members must have a medical exam and obtain police certificates.

  1. Settlement Funds

You must also show that you have enough money to support yourself and your dependants after you arrive in Canada.


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