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Canada Entrepreneur Visa


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Canada Entrepreneur Visa

About visa:

Candidates who wish to migrate to Canada under the Entrepreneur visa are assessed on a points-based system with a minimum pass mark points. The applicants are assessed on the basis of the following criteria:

  • Age
  • Education
  • Business experience
  • Language ability
  • Adaptability


Family members (spouse or common-law partner, and dependent children) can apply along with the main applicant for permanent residency. Any unmarried and dependent child below 22 can also accompany the applicant to Canada.

A child below 22 who is financially dependent on the parent because of the full-time study and a child of age 22 or over who is dependent because of the mental or physical disabilities can also accompany the applicant.

Peer Review Process

In order to protect this pilot program against fraud, a peer review process has been included. It is designed to make sure that the deals made between the investment organizations and foreign national entrepreneurs are legitimate. An immigration officer may ask for a commitment to be independently assessed by a peer review panel. These panels have been established by an industry association that represents the type of investment organization making the commitment. For example, in the case of an angel investor group, the National Angel Capital Organization would be responsible for establishing the peer review panel.

Alternatively, if the group making the commitment is a venture capital fund, Canada's Venture Capital and Private Equity Association would be responsible. While the peer review can be requested if the immigration officer believes that it would assist them in making a decision, they can also be initiated on a random basis. The assessment made by the peer review panel is not considered binding on the immigration officer. It will only confirm that the investment organization has carried out the proper checks and investigations according to industry standards. It will not provide an opinion on the wisdom or feasibility of the proposal in question.

The Peer review examines the level of due diligence that was performed by the designated organization and:

  • ensures that the company has been or will be incorporated in Canada;
  • ensures that business ownership has been verified and satisfies program requirements;


  • Entrepreneur visa holders are free to settle anywhere in Canada, work or pursue further study or invest in a business
  • Applicants can invest in or establish a business anywhere in Canada (except Quebec), and any business venture in compliance with the requirements of this category.
  • Applicants will enjoy the same rights and privileges as that of the Canadian nationals with the exception of the right to vote
  • Applicants and their dependents will have access to government-subsidized health care and subsidized education
  • Applicants will have access to a highly trained workforce and will enjoy special taxation incentives for business investment
  • After 3 years of stay in Canada applicants can apply for Canadian citizenship.


Entrepreneurs have to comply with the following obligations :

  • Manage a percentage of equity in a qualifying business equal to 33 1/3 per cent or more
  • Provide active and on-going management of the qualifying Canadian business
  • Provide full time employment in Canadian qualifying business to a person who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident other than family members of the entrepreneur.

The applicant should meet the above conditions for at least a period of one year with in the 3 year period immediately after obtaining permanent residency in Canada.

The entrepreneur should provide evidence to the officer that he/she has complied with the conditions within the duration of 3 years once the permanent residency is granted.

Certification or Offer of Employment:

The applicant has to meet with the following basic requirements in order to qualify for entrepreneur visa

  • Show that they have at least 2 years of business experience;
  • Have a minimum net worth of CDN $1600,000 that was obtained legally;
  • Have a minimum net worth of CDN $1600,000 that was obtained legally;
  • Comply with the conditions placed upon them as entrepreneurs once they arrive in Canada.

Business experience:

The applicant should have minimum two years of business experience and should have had control of a percentage of equity of the qualifying business. The two years in the period that begins five years before you submit your application and ends when a decision is made on your applications.

Full time employment:

The applicant should have been in a paid employment for a period of 1950 hours.

Net worth:

The net worth of the applicant or both the applicant and his/her partner should be C$1600,000 and legally acquired.

Medical examination:

Both the applicant and the family members have to undergo medical examination and security checks.

  • ensures that the designated organization has considered the viability of the proposed business model, assessed the business venture's management team and verified the ownership of the intellectual property;
  • makes sure the focus of the business is on a high-growth potential product and/or service; and
  • validates, for business incubator applicants, acceptance into an incubator program.

As this is a pilot program, it will only process a maximum of 2,750 applications per year. Moreover, the duration of the program is limited to five years. If this pilot program proves successful, the Canadian Government may choose to establish the Start-Up Visa Program permanently before the end of the five-year period.

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