How Fast is the Canada Start-Up Visa Program?

Applying for a Start-Up Visa in Canada involves a series of steps including:

  1. Obtain the support of a designated investment organization, such as a venture capital fund or angel investor in Canada. This process may take a few months or over a year depending on the organization and the specific applicant.
  2. Completing the required application form for Canada electronically, then printing and signing the application to be submitted by mail to the appropriate address provided in the application guidelines.
  3. Complete the checklist of required documents including:
    • Generic Application form for Canada;
    • Declaration of Additional Dependents (if necessary);
    • Background check information for the applicant, his/her spouse, and any dependents age 18 or older;
    • Completed Use of a Representative form (if applicable);
    • Passport and other travel documents;
    • Documents to prove Canadian English and/or French language competency (i.e. exam scores);
    • Letter of support from the designated organization in Canada;
    • Birth certificate;
    • Documents for spouse/common-law partner including birth certificate, marriage license, death certificate (if applicable), divorce or annulment documents (if necessary);
    • Documents for children which may include birth certificates, documents indicating full custody, and/or adoption documents;
    • Police clearance certificates from any country where the applicant resided for 6 months or longer;
    • 2 forms of photo identification for the applicant and each member of the applicant’s family;
    • Application fee;
    • Financial documents for proof of funds (i.e. bank statements);
  4. Pay the processing fees for the application which may include an application fee, biometrics fee, language competency exam fees, medical examination fees and police clearance fees
  5. Schedule an appointment for biometrics collection of fingerprints and digital identification photos.

How Long Could the Start-Up Visa Process Take from Start to Finish?

The time for each individual step may vary based on the length of time to obtain the support of a designated investor as well as the time to provide the necessary documentation.

Processing a Start-Up Visa application typically takes 12 to 16 months from start to finish after the entrepreneur submits the completed paper-based application along with all required documentation.

Further, Canada is currently assisting applicants during the COVID-19 pandemic by not closing or refusing any application in progress due to a lack of documentation. Instead, Canada will automatically give applicants 90 days to complete the necessary steps to complete the application, including to provide biometrics, passports, or other supporting documents, completing the medical exam, or completing the required background check.

Experienced Business Immigration Lawyers Can Help

One of the most efficient ways to speed up the application process while maximizing an applicant’s chances for acceptance is often to hire an experienced business immigration lawyer to walk the applicant through each step and ensure compliance with each of the requirements for a Start-Up Visa. The team at Sobirovs Law Firm can be especially helpful at the beginning of the application process by helping an applicant find an investment organization to support the entrepreneur’s business as well as by helping the applicant better understand the Start-Up Visa program and what will be required of the applicant. Our team is experienced, reliable and ready to get started helping you make your business immigration goals, a reality, contact us today.