Incorporation in Canada - Resources PDF  | Print |
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Incorporation in Canada
Choosing a Name
Incorporation Agreement
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Resources

Below are information and links to help you do your incorporation. Scroll down the page to find the province or territory in which you wish to incorporate.

Federal

Industry Canada publishes a Guide to Federal Incorporation (PDF, 60 pages). This is worth downloading for the examples it provides of completed federal Articles of Association and other forms you will be using.

Download and fill in a Corporate Name Information Form (PDF). This step is optional, but strongly recommended.

Obtain a "Canada-biased NUANS® report" for the corporate name you propose to use.

With the NUANS report, ask for a pre-approval of your proposed name at the Corporations Canada Online Filing Centre. Obtaining name pre-approval is safer than filing your entire application for incorporation and having it rejected because the name was not approved.

Note: the Province of Quebec does not currently provide data to NUANS®. For your own protection if you already do, or plan to do business in the Province of Quebec, you should search the Quebec corporations database at CIDREQ.

Once you have the NUANS report, you must file your incorporation papers within 90 days. You should prepare to file the following documents:

I suggest that you download and print those two forms and use the printed copies to pencil-in your information.

Finally, go to the Corporations Canada Online Filing Centre and if it is your first visit, register as a new user to access the Online Filing home page. From the menu, select "Articles of Incorporation," then choose one of the four incorporation options available. Follow the menus to complete the needed documents online, then pay the filing fee with a credit card.

Alberta

Obtain a NUANS Report to name your corporation. You must submit this report either to the Corporate Registry office or to an accredited service provider at the time of incorporation and the report must be less than 91 days old and contain all 6 pages when submitted. NUANS reports

The process for searching corporate names is carried out by private search houses in Alberta. You can locate these companies via this link.

You can find the necessary forms for incorporation here on the Service Alberta website.

Authorized service providers perform most Corporate Registry services in Alberta. You can find out about fees and services providers near you here on the Service Alberta website.

British Columbia

Corporate Registry forms are available online. I suggest you download these forms from that page:

  • Information on Reserving Your Corporate Name
  • Steps to Incorporating a Company in British Columbia
  • Appendix A
  • Appendix B

Print copies of those forms so you can pencil-in the content of the different fields in the forms, then use them as a reference for completing the online forms.

Conduct a search to reserve your company name. Go to Name Requests Online to submit your request electronically. There is a video demonstration and other online information to help you, and a fee is charged for the submission, with payment by credit card. Name Requests Online is available from 6 am to 10 pm Monday to Saturday (including statutory holidays) and from 1 pm to 10 pm on Sunday.

As an alternative, you can visit one of the 115 OneStop Business Registry service centers in BC. or one of the 60 Service BC centers.

When your company name is reserved, use that information and the forms you downloaded and prepared earlier, and go online to file your application for incorporation.

Manitoba

You will be incorporating a corporation with share capital (non-share corporations are non-profit).

Follow these instructions (PDF document).

New Brunswick

Obtain a name search report from a private sector name search firm. This report must be an Atlantic based NUANS search report. Find a NUANS member company in your area.

Within 90 days of receiving the name search report, apply online for incorporation at Service New Brunswick.

Newfoundland and Labrador

You will be incorporating a corporation with share capital (non-share corporations are non-profit).

At the time you file for incorporation the Registry of Companies checks for name availability within the province of Newfoundland and Labrador only. The province is not currently a member of the NUANS system and does not maintain a provincial database for NUANS searches.

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has an online search site for companies, but in January 2010 it persisted in requiring "Internet Explorer 6.x with 128-bit encryption" and this does not seem to have been updated since January 12, 2003. We have tested the link in January, 2010, with:

  • Internet Explorer 8 - Works
  • Mozilla Firefox 3.5 - Fails
  • Apple Safari 4.x - Fails
  • Google Chrome 3.x - Fails
  • Opera 10.10 - Fails

Based on our tests, it appears that you can not use the online search for companies in Newfoundland and Labrador unless you have a Microsoft Windows computer and are using Internet Explorer. Apple Macintosh, Apple iPhone, Linux, Solaris, and computers using other operating systems or web browsers will be unable to access the web service.

If you think you will be doing business outside the province, or want to establish a corporate name that will not lead to conflict in other parts of Canada, you may want to contact a NUANS registered member company who can search other provinces for you.

To apply for incorporation, you need to complete these forms (all links are to PDF forms which you can download, complete, and print):

Submit the completed forms to:

Registry of Companies
P.O. Box 8700 Confederation Building,
St. John's,
NL A1B 4J6
Phone: 729-3317
Fax: 729-0232

Nova Scotia

to come

Nunavut

Download the Corporate Registries Submissions Guide, a PDF document which describes how your incorporation application can be made.

Download the Corporate Registries Guide to Territorial Incorporation, a PDF kit which includes the forms you will need:

  • Name Search and Reservation request form
  • Form 1, Articles of Incorporation
  • Form 2, Notice of Registered Office
  • Form 4, Notice of Directors

The kit also contains instructions for how to complete and submit the forms.

For more information contact:

Legal Registries Division
Department of Justice
Government of Nunavut
P.O. Box 1000, Station 570
Iqaluit, NU X0A 0H0

Tel: 867-975-6590
Fax: 867-975-6594

Northwest Territories

Download these forms and instructions (all are in PDF format):

Prepare one copy of the name search request form and submit it to the Corporate Registries together with the fee of $25 payable to the Government of the Northwest Territories. If your proposed name is rejected you will have to submit a new name for searching. If your proposed name is accepted, it will be reserved for you for 90 days and you must complete your incorporation within that time, or you will have to start again with a name search.

After your name is accepted. complete the Articles of Incorporation. Also prepare TWO copies each of the Notice of Registered Office and Notice of Directors. Sign each copy of each form (photocopied signatures will not be accepted).

Submit the forms to the Corporate Registries together with the fee of $300, payable to the Government of the Northwest Territories.

For more information contact:

Corporate Registries
Department of Justice
Government of the Northwest Territories
PO Box 1320
Yellowknife NT X1A 2L9

or

Department of Justice
Government of the Northwest Territories
1st Floor, Stuart M. Hodgson Building
5009-49th Street
Yellowknife, NWT X1A 2L9

Tel: (867) 920-8987
Toll Free: (877) 743-3302
Fax: (867) 873-0243
Website

Ontario

Do a Name Search search to get a business name report (unless you're incorporating as a numbered company). OnCorp Direct Inc. in Ontario offers search services.

Fill out and file articles of incorporation with the Ministry of Government Services within 90 days of obtaining the Name Search report. A quick way to do this is via OnCorp's services, which provide a pre-defined set of standard Articles of Incorporation, requiring you to only fill in information like names and addresses.

Complete and submit an Initial Return to the Companies and Personal Property Security Branch within 60 days after the date of incorporation. Download a PDF form, complete it and print it, then mail it to:

Ministry of Government Services
Companies and Personal Property Security Branch
393 University Avenue, Suite 200
Toronto ON M5G 2M2

Prince Edward Island

A corporation wishing to register a trade name is required to have the Consumer, Corporate & Insurance Services Division conduct a computerized name search of the proposed name prior to registration. The search fee is $40.00. Contact them at:

Fourth Floor, Shaw Building
95 Rochford Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE
C1A 7N8
Telephone: (902) 368-4550
Facsimile: (902) 368-5283

You can search the Prince Edward Island Corporate/Business Names Registry on the Internet.

If a business name is used by a corporation, a declaration of this in writing must be filed with the Consumer, Corporate & Insurance Services Division (address above). An officer authorized by the corporation must complete the declaration on behalf of the corporation. The registration cost is $65.00.

Government incorporation forms are available online. Scroll down the page to the heading Office of the Attorney General, where you will find the forms.

Saskatchewan

New business corporations are required to do a Saskatchewan Plus search. Information and tools to do this can be found on the website of the Justice and Attorney General.

The same website has a downloadable Business Corporations Act Kit that contains a copy of the forms required to incorporate.

Send your completed incorporation forms in duplicate with the required fees to:

Saskatchewan Justice
Corporations Branch
2nd Floor, 1871 Smith Street
Regina, Saskatchewan.
S4P 4W5

Yukon

Government incorporation forms are available online.

Obtain a NUANS Report to name your corporation. You must submit this report either to the Corporate Affairs office at the time of incorporation and the report must be less than 91 days old and contain all 6 pages when submitted.

The process for searching corporate names is carried out by private search houses. You can locate these companies via this link.

Corporate Affairs can also help you with the name search. You can contact them (8:30am to 5:00pm) here:

Phone: (867) 667-5314
Toll free (in Yukon): 1-800-661-0408 local 5314
Fax: (867) 393-6251
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Third Floor, Law Centre
2130 Second Avenue
Whitehorse
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After Incorporation

Don't forget after incorporating your new company that you should register for whatever other licenses, registrations, or certifications you require to legally operate your business. Such registrations may include local (municipal) as well as provincial and federal requirements.

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