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The Canadian Self-Employed Immigration Program is designed to attract those applicants who are interested in settling in one of Canada’s provinces or territories as a professional athlete or artisan. Musicians, singers, choreographers, producers, directors, painters, writers, freelance journalists, photographers, announcers and broadcasters, graphic and interior designers, athletes, coaches and referees are found amongst individuals most frequently applying for this program.

Self-employed persons who intend to live in Quebec are not eligible under this program and should apply under the Quebec Self-Employed Program.

To qualify for this program, applicants must have relevant experience, intention, and ability to:

  • make a significant contribution to the cultural or sporting life in Canada as artisans or as athletes at an international level

At least two years of relevant work experience in the applicant’s professional industry are required within the five years that precede their business immigration application. Professional athletes and individuals in the arts and culture industry must either provide proof of:

  • Two years of participating in cultural activities or athletics at a world-class level
  • Two years of being self-employed within the industry

You must also demonstrate that you can contribute to the Canadian economy, which will be assessed based on qualities such as their experience, education, age, language abilities, and adaptability and graded on a point system. Currently, self-employed applicants must achieve a score of at least 35 points out of 100.

Selection Criteria Maximum Points
Experience 35
Age 10
Education 25
English/French Proficiency 24
Adaptability 6
Total 100

According to Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada the processing time for Self-Employed Persons Program is 23 months.


Fill out the free assessment and we will be in touch with you to discuss your available options.