Start-Up Visa Program

Start-up visa program was launched more recently in comparison to business investor programs through PNPs (Provincial Nominee Programs), and its main target are innovative entrepreneurs who do not have high net worth to their names yet but are aiming to come to Canada to establish a start-up business.

Unlike the investor program, applicants under this class are allowed to submit applications for permanent residence right away and have the option of applying for a work permit before committing to submitting an application for permanent residence. Both applications can be submitted at the same time or separately depending on the applicant’s goals.

Eligible applicants can have up to 5 members (business partners) applying together and must meet the following criteria:

  • Have a qualifying business and holding 50% voting rights while the designated organization holds the other 50%:
    • In the event it’s a group of 5, each member must hold at least 10% voting rights.
  • Meet language and financial requirements:
    • CLB 5 across all 4 bands of an IRCC (Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada) approved test such as IELTS, CELPIP, TCF or TEF.
    • Financial funds vary depending on the family size; if the applicant is unmarried and has no children, the minimum amount required is CAD $12,960.
  • Obtain a letter of support from a designated organization that will agree to invest funds into the applicant’s venture OR obtain an acceptance letter into a business incubator.

When the applicant arrives in Canada, it is imperative that they continue with their venture and work on growing the start-up business per commitments that were established with the designated organizations or per business plan that was submitted at the time of the application.

This class of application is very suitable to young entrepreneurs that already have previous experience in setting up start-up ventures and are coming to Canada with a new innovative idea or to expand their existing business to this country.

To determine your eligibility under this program or schedule an assessment consultation, you do not have to look any further, as our firm will gladly assist you with your immigration matter. At UL Lawyers, for all immigration matters, we offer free consultation for the first 15 minutes and in the event our law firm is retained, we will credit the consultation fee towards your legal fees. For more information, you can contact us via telephone or WhatsApp at 1-905-744-8888 or email us at We look forward to assisting you with your immigration matter.