Canadian Self Employed Visa in the USA: How to Apply

Suppose you have a profitable business and are ready to take the next step in your industry. In that case, the Self-employed Immigration Program for Canadian Entrepreneurs might be what you’re looking for. This program is designed specifically for people who control their businesses and want to start hiring employees or plan on scaling their businesses. You must be aware that this type of visa is highly competitive, and only a small number of people will be elected each year. It’s not as simple as it sounds, as you need to prove that starting your business was the main reason you want to immigrate to Canada and not because of some other factor. With that in mind, it’s time we dive into how exactly you can become a self-employed entrepreneur to get your green card! Read on to learn more about applying for a Canadian self-employed Visa in the USA, common myths surrounding this process, and how it may affect your future if you succeed.

Canadian Self Employed Visa in the USA: How to Apply

Do you want to become self-employed in Canada but aren’t sure where to start? If so, you’re not alone! Many American residents are flocking to the Canadian self-employed visa program because it offers lower taxes, more opportunities for advancement, and isn’t bogged down by the high unemployment rates that most countries in the European Union are experiencing. In this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about applying for the Canadian self-employed visa in the USA and maintaining your status as long as possible, allowing you to live and work in Canada indefinitely.

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What is a Visa?

A visa is a document you must obtain before entering Canada. There are different types of tickets for people with various reasons for wanting to visit Canada. If you have recently received self-employed status in Canada, you may be eligible for a Canadian self-employed (SE) Visa. This page provides information on how to apply and the SE visa requirements. The SE Visa can be used either inside or outside of Canada. An application can take up to six months to process, but it may be quicker if submitted from inside the country.

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Who is Self Employed

A self-employed individual makes a living by selling their skills, such as an artist, designer, writer, or consultant. You can apply for your Canadian self-employed visa in several ways, including at any of Canada's Canadian embassies. To apply, you will need to have proof of all these things:
(1) Your intention to enter and remain in Canada temporarily;
(2) Your qualifications in your trade;
(3) That you have enough money (at least CAD 40000) for yourself and any accompanying family members for a minimum of one year;
(4) A list of the items that will be shipped or brought with you on entry into Canada.

What is a Self-Employed Visa in Canada?

A Canadian self-employed visa will allow you and your family to indefinitely work and reside in Canada. These visas are granted based on labor market needs, meaning that your visa will not be granted if Canada is not experiencing a labor shortage. To apply for this type of visa, you must have an approved application from a provincial or territorial government stating that they need skilled workers in their area. Once you have obtained this letter of support, please apply for your federal Express Entry profile and submit it to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

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How to Apply for a Self-Employed Visa in Canada

You must have a provincial or territorial nomination to apply for a Canadian self-employed visa. You'll also need to have enough money available and a plan that shows how you'll be able to live while operating your business. One key detail is that your chances of getting approved are less likely if you've been convicted of any criminal offense. Other things to keep in mind when applying for a Canadian self-employed visa include making sure that the application fee has been paid and providing evidence of sufficient funds to support yourself while in Canada. If applying from within Canada, go through this process with Citizenship and Immigration Canada. If applying from outside Canada, apply at one of their offices near where you live, as they are only open for limited hours each day.

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Who is Eligible for the Canada Self-Employed Visa?

You are eligible to apply for the self-employed visa for Canada if you meet the following conditions:
You have sufficient experience and skills

You must have the knowledge and skills needed to work as a self-employed person in Canada.

The minimum amount of experience needed for a self-employed person is two years. You must have gained this experience within the five years before your application.

Because the Canada self-employed visa is assessed with a point-based system, more experience means more points.

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Check your eligibility

Essentially, you must check whether you are eligible for the visa based on an online questionnaire on the official website of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). If you are, they will send you an application package to your email address. The application package includes a guide, application forms, and a list of documents you need. Follow the instructions in the manual.

Fill out the forms and compile the document file.

You have to fill out all the necessary forms included in the package. Then, if you are applying online, upload them to your online application.

If you are applying on paper, print them and sign them. Then, gather all the required documents and attach them to the application. You will have to mail the completed application to the address you will be provided with.

You must have the following experience:

  • Two years of being self-employed in cultural activities/athletics.
  • Two years of participating in cultural activities/athletics at a world-class level.One year of experience in (A) in addition to one year of experience in (B).

You have to meet the point-based selection criteria

The visa officers who process your self-employed Canadian visa application assess you on a point-based system. The maximum amount of points is 100, and you will need a minimum of 35 points.

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They look at your:

    Experience (35 points)

You get the maximum points if you have at least five years of experience.

    Education (25 points)

You get the maximum points if you have a Master’s Degree or Ph.D. and at least 17 years of full-time studies.

    Age (10 points)

You get the maximum points between 21–49 years of age. They want people who can contribute to Canada’s culture and athletics for more time.

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    Language abilities (24 points)

They will assess your ability to write, speak, read, and listen in either English or French. You can choose the language you are better at to be your first official language. You can take a language test from a designated agency such as IELTS or CELPIP for English, or TEF Canada or TFC Canada for French.

    Adaptability (6 points)

You get adaptability points based on: your spouse’s education level, whether you previously worked/studied in Canada, and whether you have relatives in Canada. They look at this to see how well you would potentially immerse yourself in Canada’s culture.

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Documents include:

  • The standard required documents for all Canadian visa applications.
  • Proof of educational statuses such as certificates, diplomas, or transcripts.
  • Proof you have passed the language test.
  • Proof of relevant work experience.
  • Proof of adaptability.
  • Copies of travel documents/passports. They must show the name, date of birth, photo, expiry date, or changes in name, birth date, expiry date, etc.
  • Police clearances.
  • Birth certificates.
  • Marriage certificate/divorce or annulment certificate (if married more than once, provide documents for each). (If applicable)
  • Death certificate for former spouse/common-law partner. (If applicable)
  • If you have a common-law partner: Statutory Declaration of Common-Law Union (IMM 5409 – original) and proof you have lived together for a minimum of 12 months (shared apartment lease, shared bills, shared address on documents.)
  • Information on your children, like birth certificates, adoption papers, or proof of custody. (If applicable).
  • National IDs or family or household registry/book. (If applicable).
  • Police Certificates and Clearances. They should be from every country/territory you’ve lived in for six or more months. Canada visa pictures.
    Fee receipts of Canadian Visa.
  • If applying as a Quebec-selected applicant: Certificat de Sélection du Québec (CSQ)

Canadian Entrepreneur Immigration Program Requirements

Before applying for a Self-Employed Canadian visa, you must meet the Temporary Resident Permit (TRP) requirements. You can apply at any time with a qualifying job offer from an authorized employer. To apply for your visa, visit and select one of three options based on your situation. If you are not eligible for this program, there are other ways to gain Canadian permanent residency. You may consider applying as a skilled worker or under the Investor Immigration Program.

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Canadian Eligibility Factors for a Self-Employed Visa

To apply for a Canadian self-employed visa, you must meet the eligibility factors outlined below. You should speak with a qualified immigration expert if you have any questions. They can answer your questions and provide detailed information about your situation and what options may be available to you. They will also walk you through the application process step by step. You should apply as soon as possible because waiting until the last minute could result in a higher cost. You should consider all the costs associated with this type of visa, including upfront fees, health insurance, and lawyer fees. After being granted a Canadian self-employed visa, you will need to visit Canada every six months or risk losing your status there.

Make sure you are not missing any documents, forms, or fees. If you are, your visa officers will send the application back and ask you to fix any mistakes/attach documents you forgot.

You have to provide your biometric information.

Applicants between 14 and 79 years old have to provide their biometric information. This includes fingerprints and pictures.

You provide the biometric information after you send the application.

The officers processing your visa application will inform you when they have received your completed application. Then, they will tell you when you should send them your biometric information.

You should have already paid your biometrics fee before sending your application.

You can give your biometric information at your Canada visa application center. You can do this at an application support center if you are from the US.

If Your Canada Self-employment Visa Application is Accepted

If you acquire a self-employment visa for Canada, an officer from the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will be waiting for you when you travel to the country.

You must have your passport and other travel documents, a valid permanent resident visa and your, Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR), and proof that you can financially support yourself and your family.

The officer will ask you questions to evaluate whether you still qualify for the self-employment visa. If you give incomplete or false answers, you may not be allowed entry to the country.

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If you live and work in Canada but want to explore opportunities for yourself elsewhere, getting a self-employed visa could be your answer. This type of visa is designed for people who intend to become self-employed outside of Canada and are looking for a way to enter a country where their skills and knowledge can be used. Remember that it will take time before you'll be approved, so make sure you plan.