Minimum Investment for Job Creators Work Permit

Minimum Investment for Job Creators Work PermitUgyen Wangdi is a citizen of Bhutan. He runs a popular restaurant in Thimphu. However, he intends to open the same restaurant in Toronto. Of course, Ugyen Wangdi has done his research. He knows there are not many Bhutanese restaurants in Toronto.

Consequently, Ugyen Wangdi hopes to expand his business in Canada and hire many Canadians. However, he wonders how much investment he needs to make to secure a work permit. As a future job creator, the financial implications of this decision are essential to Ugyen Wangdi.

Canada offers a unique work permit for job creators. If you are not familiar with this program reads the following article first:

What is an acceptable investment?

When you start a business, you may fund your business in different ways. Of course, for a startup business, some of these options are not available:

  • Your own money
  • Money from other shareholders (if any)
  • Bank loans
  • Loans or investment by venture capital funds or angel investors
  • Selling bonds or debentures

Regardless of other sources of investment, the immigration officer prefers to see substantial personal investment by the applicant. Of course, you also need to own at least 50% of the business.

What is the minimum investment by a job creator?

The officers typically consider both the total investment in the business and the personal contribution of the job creator. Of course, the investment by the applicant is probably the most critical piece. However, there is no minimum investment by the job creator. Regardless, the investment could assist in contributing to the Canadian economy. It also needs to help Canadians or permanent residents of Canada secure job opportunities.

My personal preference is an investment of at least $100,000 by the applicant. However, this is a personal preference based on my experience with these cases. Investment alone does not guarantee success. Of course, it does not necessarily result in failure, either. Regardless, take it seriously.

The minimum net worth

The applicant’s minimum net worth shows whether they are capable of making the investment they have promised. Of course, you need to make sure you understand the concept of net worth. Generally speaking, net worth means all your assets minus your liabilities.

Examples of personal assets

Some examples of personal assets include the following:

  • The money you hold in a bank account
  • Your properties
  • The market value of your existing businesses
  • Publically traded stock shares
  • Any pension or insurance plan that offers you a lump sum of money upon request
  • Your vehicle
  • Any other assets that belong you

Of course, this list is neither inclusive nor exclusive. However, you may only present assets that you could prove their value and your ownership. When it comes to properties and businesses, you need to submit official appraisal reports on top of the title deeds and ownership documents.

Examples of personal liabilities

Some examples of personal liabilities include the following:

  • Mortgages you have received for purchasing your properties
  • Personal term loans
  • Debt on credit lines or credit cards

I must emphasize this list is neither inclusive nor exclusive. However, you need to present documents to support your claims about your liabilities.

Transferable assets

When you calculate your net worth, make sure to calculate transferrable assets too. Generally speaking, a transferrable asset could be any of the following:

  • Unencumbered funds (e.g. money in the bank that is immediately available to you)
  • Properties with no liens against them and no partners (other than your common-law partner or spouse)
  • Your vehicle, if wholly owned by you

Transferrable assets are valuable because they are the only part of your net worth that you can transfer to Canada and invest in your business.

The minimum investment by job creator and the transferrable assets

When you apply for a job creator work permit (i.e. IMP C11), you need to show your transferrable assets are way more than your investment. Imagine you are investing $200,000, and your transferrable assets are only $210,000. Consequently, the officer might assume you are not capable of fulfilling your commitment. Unfortunately, this is a reasonable assumption as the officer considers issues such as the exchange rate and your other expenses, such as leasing an apartment or purchasing airplane tickets.

Therefore, make sure to commit to an investment that is way less than your transferrable assets. I prefer to see my client’s transferrable assets are at least 1.5 times their investment in the Canadian business. Nonetheless, I prefer a client who has liquid assets equivalent to or more than their investment. By liquid assets, I mean the assets that you can easily and quickly turn them into cash.

Do you need to transfer the investment to Canada?

Of course, you do! However, you may not transfer all the money before receiving the work permit. Regardless, you need to show to the officer that you have the intention and ability to invest. Consequently, I recommend transferring part of the funds upfront to a bank account that belongs to your Canadian business. False documentation or any attempt to deceive an immigration officer is against the law and has dire consequences. Read the following article for more information:


If you are applying for a work permit as a job creator, make sure to follow these rules:

  • Consider a significant personal investment in the Canadian business
  • Your transferrable assets need to be way more than the investment you intend to make
  • You have access to liquid assets that are preferably equal or more than your investment
  • Transfer part or all the investment to Canada even before applying for the work permit

Of course, this is just one aspect of this work permit. I must also emphasize that this article is not a legal recommendation. It only reflects my personal experience with these types of applications. Consequently, make sure to consult with a Chartered Professional Accountant and a Corporation lawyer before making any decisions.

If you wish to visit or move to Canada, please fill out our free assessment form. We will review the form for free, but we will contact you only if we find an opportunity for you. Alternatively, you may book a consultation session. Consultation sessions are not free, but you will receive formal advice from a licenced practitioner.

Al Parsai, MA, DTM, RCIC
Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant
Ashton College Instructor – Immigration Consulting
Author – 88 Tips on Immigration to Canada


This article provides information of a general nature only. It may no longer be current. It does not give legal advice. Do not rely on it as legal advice or immigration advice. We cannot be held responsible for the content of these articles. If you have specific legal questions, you must consult a lawyer. If you are looking for immigration advice, book an appointment. All the characters in the articles are fictional, unless otherwise clearly stated. Any resemblance in names, dates, and places (whether individuals, organizations, regions, or countries) is coincidental.

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Al Parsai

Al Parsai is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) in Toronto, Canada. He also teaches the official immigration consulting courses at Ashton College in Vancouver, Canada. Al who holds a Masters degree from Yorkville University is a member of ICCRC and CAPIC organizations. Al, the CEO of Parsai Immigration Services, has represented hundreds of applicants from more than 30 countries to the immigration authorities since January 2011.