The Self-Employed Program seeks to bring people who will become self-employed in Canada. They must have either: relevant experience in cultural activities or athletics, and intend and be able to make a significant contribution to the cultural or athletic life of Canada, or experience in managing a farm, and intend and be able to buy and manage a farm in Canada.
Note: As of March 10, 2018, we are no longer accepting new applications under the farm management stream of the Self-Employed Person Program.
To be eligible as a self-employed person, you must:
- have relevant experience
- intend and be able to be self-employed in Canada
- meet the selection criteria for self-employed people and
- meet medical, security and other conditions.
Your experience is relevant if you have:
- taken part in cultural activities or athletics at a world-class level or
- been self-employed in cultural activities or athletics or
- experience managing a farm
Self-Employed Person. means a foreign national who:
- has relevant experience
- intends and is able to be self-employed in Canada and
- can contribute to Canada’s economy in one of the required areas.
Relevant Experience for a self-employed person means at least two years of experience.
It must be during the period starting five years before the day you apply and ending on the day we make a decision on your application. The experience must be:
- for cultural activities:
- two one-year periods being self-employed in cultural activities, or
- two one-year periods participating at a world-class level in cultural activities, or
- a combination of a one-year period described in A above, and a one-year period described in B above.
- for athletics:
- two one-year periods being self-employed in athletics, or
- two one-year periods participating at a world class level in athletics, or
- a combination of a one-year period described in a above, and a one-year period described in b above, and
- for buying and managing a farm, two one-year periods managing a farm.
To qualify as a self-employed immigrant, you must:
- meet the definition of a self-employed person
- get a minimum of 35 points after we grade you based on our five selection criteria and point system: Education, Experience, Age, Ability in English and/or French, and Adaptability.
Applicants Score. Your maximum possible score is 100. The pass mark is currently 35 points. Make sure you visit this site regularly if you’re thinking about immigrating to Canada as a self-employed immigrant.
We select candidates based on:
- the documents that you provide
- your score under each of the selection criteria
- you meeting the definition of a self-employed person
As part of the immigration process, you may need an interview. During the interview, a visa officer will ask you to explain:
- information that is unclear or inconsistent
- shortcomings or gaps in the documents that you provide
If there is a difference between your statement of your qualifications and the visa officer’s assessment, we go with the officer’s decision.
NOC Group 51 (Professional Occupations in Art and Culture):
- Librarians, archivists, conservators, curators
- Writing, translating and related communications professionals
- Creative and performing artists
NOC Group 52 (Technical Occupations in Art, Culture, Recreation, and Sports):
- Technical occupations in libraries, public archives, museums and art galleries
- Photographers, graphic arts technicians and technical and co-ordinating occupations in motion pictures, broadcasting and performing arts.
- Announcers and other performers, n.e.c.
- Creative designers and craftspersons
- Athletes, coaches, referees, and related occupations