Canada Company Formation Requirements

Whether you choose to operate under provincial law or federal law, you must first submit the corporate name for approval in English, French or a combination of the two. Once you receive approval for the company name from Corporations Canada, you can proceed with the rest of the documents we detail below. Officers within the company are allowed to hold more than one position, and while non-resident shareholders and directors may serve as corporate officers, you must appoint a President and Secretary.

What else do you need to incorporate in Canada?  

Corporations are also required to have a bank account and receive a Business Number for taxation, imports and exports, and payroll purposes. You need this number for permits and licences, and use it as the name of the entity should you choose to do so. Companies must register with the Canada Revenue Agency (“CRA”) to file corporate business taxes. 

canada company formation requirements

The Canada company formation requirements are: 

  • The proposed name for your entity
  • Initial Registered Office Address and First Board of Directors in the province of registration
  • Bylaws, minutes and company filings that are to be kept at the registered office
  • Your company’s share structure and any restrictions on the transfer of those shares
  • Any restrictions you want to place on your business activities or enterprise in general
  • Decide the 12-month period that will be your fiscal year when making a declaration to the CRA
  • Articles of Incorporation in either French or English, in both French and English or in a format that is in equal amounts English and French 
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