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Immigrating to Quebec as a self-employed worker

In Quebec, self-employed status refers to a person who independently carries out an economic, professional, commercial or artisanal activity. This status is particularly suited to individuals who wish to operate their own business or offer professional services without being bound by a traditional employment contract.

What are the eligibility criteria for immigrating to Quebec as a self-employed worker?

To immigrate to Quebec as a self-employed worker, a number of specific criteria must be met, ensuring that applicants have the skills, experience and financial resources to successfully integrate into the province. Here are the key requirements:

Professional practice in Quebec

You will need to exercise your profession independently, whether alone or in collaboration, with or without the assistance of paid staff. However, certain professional activities are excluded, in particular :

  • Payday loans, cheque cashing and pawnbroking services.
  • The production, distribution or sale of pornographic or sexually explicit material, as well as services related to the sex industry such as erotic dance shows, escort services or erotic massages.
  • Activities in the real estate sector, including property trading, leasing, brokerage, development or planning.

Work experience required

You must have at least two years of self-employed work experience in the five years preceding your application. Experience gained in the above-mentioned ineligible sectors will not be taken into account.

Authorization to practice a regulated profession

If your profession is regulated in Quebec, you must :

  • Be authorized to practice this profession in the province.
  • Or have a degree or diploma recognized, in whole or in part, by the relevant regulatory body, with proof of recognition dated no more than five years prior to submission of your application.

Minimum net worth

A minimum net worth of CDN$100,000 is required, which can be shared with your spouse. These assets must come from legitimate sources, and donations received in the six months preceding the application are not eligible. The lawful origin and accumulation of these assets, including those of your spouse, must be demonstrated.

Education level

You must have a high school diploma, obtained before the date of submission of your application, and recognized as equivalent in Quebec.

French language skills

Oral proficiency in French, at least level 7 on the Échelle québécoise des niveaux de compétence en français, is required.

Start-up deposit

A start-up deposit is required at a financial institution in Quebec:

  • CA$25,000 if you plan to work outside the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM).
  • 50,000 CAD if your business is located in the MMC.

This deposit must be made after receiving the letter confirming the opening of your file.

Financial self-sufficiency

A self-sufficiency contract must be signed, in which you agree to support yourself and your family for the first three months after becoming a permanent resident.

Attestation of democratic and Québec values

You will receive an application for an attestation of learning of democratic values and Quebec values as soon as your file is opened.

Meeting these criteria positions you as a potential candidate to immigrate to Quebec as a self-employed worker, contributing to the Quebec economy through your expertise and autonomy.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of immigrating to Quebec as a self-employed worker ?

Immigrating to Quebec as a self-employed worker presents a set of advantages and disadvantages that need to be considered before making a decision. Here's an overview of the main points to consider:


1. Professional autonomy: As a self-employed worker, you have the freedom to run your business on your own terms, choose your customers, and define your working hours, offering considerable flexibility in managing your career.

2. Market opportunities: Quebec offers a diversified economic market with many opportunities in different sectors. As a self-employed worker, you can capitalize on your unique skills to address specific niches.

3. Tax incentives: The Québec tax system offers a number of incentives for self-employed workers, including deductions and tax credits that can reduce your tax burden.

4. Access to support programs: The government and various organizations offer assistance and support programs for the self-employed, including training, mentoring and business start-up resources.

5. Cultural and linguistic integration: Working directly in the Quebec market as a self-employed worker encourages rapid immersion in the culture and language, accelerating the integration process.


1. Uncertain financial stability: Unlike salaried employment, self-employed income can vary considerably from month to month, making financial management more complex.

2. Administrative responsibilities: Self-employed people have to manage all the administrative and tax obligations associated with their activity themselves, which can be time-consuming and complex for some.

3. Lack of social benefits: Self-employed workers don't enjoy the social benefits typically offered by employers, such as health insurance or retirement plans, which require personal planning.

4. Risk of isolation: Working independently, particularly from home, can lead to a certain degree of professional isolation without the social environment of a traditional workplace.

5. Immigration and settlement challenges: Navigating the immigration process and settling in Quebec as a self-employed worker can present specific challenges, including the need to prove the viability of your business project and adapt quickly to a new market.


In summary, immigrating to Quebec as a self-employed worker can offer great freedom and significant opportunities for people with an entrepreneurial spirit and the ability to adapt to a dynamic environment. However, it's crucial to be prepared for the financial, administrative and social challenges involved, carefully weighing up the advantages against the disadvantages to make an informed choice.

**Please note that the information presented in this article is subject to change and is provided for reference purposes only; it should not be construed as legal advice. For accurate and personalized immigration advice, we strongly recommend that you consult a qualified lawyer or immigration consultant.