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Top 5 Questions About Registering a Business in Canada

Starting a new business isn’t easy. There’s so much to do and it can be overwhelming and hard to navigate where to begin. That’s why Ownr is here to help you make registering your business simple.

5 Important questions to ask before registering a business in Canada:

1. What’s the difference between a sole proprietorship and incorporation?

A question we hear all the time. In essence, a sole prop means you are the sole owner of a business that isn’t distinct from your person—you take on all responsibilities, profits, and debts of your company. Incorporation, on the other hand, is the creation of an entirely separate legal entity. Incorporation limits your liability, is useful for helping to raise funding, and can offer you some tax benefits.

To learn more about the benefits and drawbacks of sole proprietorships and incorporations, you can read more about sole proprietorships vs corporations.

2. How do I register or incorporate my business?

Easy answer—with Ownr! Incorporation isn’t the easiest task, and even if you go it alone through a government website, chances are you aren’t getting the total package. Many of your articles of incorporation will need to be prepared by a lawyer, making your actual costs much higher than those advertised. Ownr is a one-stop service that will get you everything you need to run a legally compliant corporation.

That’s the short answer, to learn more, check out our comprehensive guide to incorporation in Canada.

3. What is the difference between named vs. numbered incorporation?

A named company is one with a traditional name like many companies you know. Legally, it must contain three elements, a distinctive element, a descriptive element, and a legal ending. Think Rhino Sandwiches Inc. or Kyle’s Carpets Corp.

A numbered company, on the other hand, has a generated number that represents your company name. You can operate under a trade name, but that name will need registered with the provincial government.

Want to know more about naming your company? Read more about business name requirements and how to name your business.

4. How do I read a name search report?

Your physical NUANS report comes in the form of a six or seven-page document, outlining incorporated or trademarked businesses with similar names to the one you’ve proposed. It’s not the easiest document in the world to decipher. When you incorporate with Ownr, you’ll be able to utilize our live naming tool, and we’ll include an official NUANS report as part of your incorporation package. Much easier.

To learn more about NUANS searches, how to get one, and all things business names, read our guide to NUANS.

5. How do I get a GST/HST number?

Once you incorporate with Ownr, getting your GST/HST number is simple. Corporations can register for GST/HST directly in their profile—select ‘Organization‘ and then ‘Company Info‘. Under ‘Organization Information’ click ‘Add GST/HST Number’. If the button is greyed out, please check that nothing is pending in your Ownr Dashboard.

Read more about filing your first GST/HST return.

At Ownr, we have a team of customer success managers available to help answer these questions and more! What are you waiting for? Ownr is here to help – for real. No obligation required, get the information you need to get started and register your business today.

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