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Home >> Working >> Self-employment in Kingston


Many newcomers enter Canada through the Self-Employed Persons Program of Citizenship and Immigration Canada. Individuals in this program are expected to make a significant contribution to the cultural or athletic life of Canada. The program includes people with experience managing farms and an interest in either purchasing or managing one in Canada. See Immigrating to Canada for more information and links on the Self-Employed Persons Program.

Self-employment is an attractive option for many Canadians. Individuals can set their own hours and be their own "boss." Generally, self-employed people aren't required to produce a business plan or make a large capital investment. Responsibility for paying income and other taxes and making Canada Pension Plan contributions rests with the self-employed person.

A disadvantage of self-employment is that individuals may not be eligible for some of the benefits available to people who work for companies and organizations. An advantage of self-employment is that people can work from home or move from one workplace to another, so the overhead costs of operating the business are reduced.

Running a home business also has tax advantages. A number of expenses are considered eligible deductions, including the cost of using an automobile, heating and lighting the house, cleaning materials, purchasing office equipment, telephone services, and an Internet connection.

The following occupations are often performed by self-employed people.

  • Computer and software consultants
  • Doctors, dentists, lawyers
  • Architects and accountants
  • Real estate agents
  • Artists, illustrators, designers
  • Music teachers, coaches
  • Writers, journalists and editors
  • Photographers
  • Operators of home daycares
  • Personal trainers


For More Information

Self-employed people
A Canadian government program for immigrants who want to become self-employed in Canada and have experience that will make a significant contribution to the cultural or athletic life of the country or in farm management. Answers to frequently asked questions (faq) are available on this topic in the help centre.

What are the advantages of self-employment? What are the disadvantages?
A list of the advantages and disadvantages of newcomers choosing to become self-employed. Includes links to other useful sites.

Canada Business Network
Information about starting a business; grants and finances; taxes; regulations, licences and permits; hiring and managing staff; marketing and sales; and other business topics. Includes a blog with useful topical articles. Also available on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Ontario WorkinfoNet: Special Interest Groups — Self-Employment
A list of links to programs and information for self-employed people in Ontario.

CRA document: RC4110 Employee or Self-employed?
A Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) pamphlet that explains the distinction between being an employer and working for yourself. Available in E-text, Braille and large print.

Starting a Business — resource list
A list of federal programs that provide guidance and financial assistance to help people create jobs for themselves by starting a business. Includes programs specifically for Francophones, Aboriginal entrepreneurs, and people with disabilities, as well as inventors, women and young entrepreneurs.

Canada — Arts, Culture & Heritage
Government of Canada website with information on the arts, cultures and heritage of Canada, its Aboriginal Peoples, official languages, geography, history, heritage, multiculturalism, celebrations and commemorations.

Ontario Ministry of Labour — Podcast Archive
A series of podcasts on employment standards and health and safety. A wide variety of topics is covered, including deductions from wages, overtime, filing an employment standards claim, heat stress, farming safety, infection prevention, etc.

KIP “Call Kingston Home” Movie — Real Estate Agent
This video profiles a local real estate agent discussing what makes Kingston special and why she chose it as the home for her and her family. She talks about taking an intensive English-language program at Queen’s University and studying real estate at St. Lawrence college, local community groups, and what it means to her to call Kingston home. This Kingston Immigration Partnership (KIP) video is in Spanish with English subtitles.

Downtown Kingston! — Business Directory
An online searchable directory of the over 750 businesses that offer goods and services in the core commercial area of downtown Kingston. Includes anything from shopping, dining and entertainment to accountants, dentists and engineering firms.

Start-up visa
A business-class immigration option for entrepreneurs, this program links immigrant entrepreneurs with experienced private sector organizations who are experts in working with start-ups. Details on eligibility requirements, the applications process, and what to do after submitting an application.

Not-for-Profit Organizations in Ontario
This new bilingual website outlines everything to do with not-for-profit organizations in Ontario - including how to set one up and run one. Created by the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade this site offers the first Ontario-wide funding directory that lists Ontario government grant opportunities; research about the sector; and provincial programs that support this sector.

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