Business Registration in Quebec – Starting a business in Quebec requires entrepreneurs to follow specific registration steps to ensure they comply with provincial and federal regulations. This guide will walk you through the 8 critical steps to register your business in Quebec. Remember, while these steps provide a general overview, it’s essential to consult with legal and accounting professionals for your unique situation.

A guide to walk you through the 8 critical steps to register your business in Quebec.

  1. Determine Your Business Structure

    Decide the type of business structure: sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation.

  2. Choose and Reserve a Business Name

    Search the Registraire des entreprises to ensure your desired name isn't taken.

  3. Register with the Registraire des entreprises

    Prepare necessary documents and pay the registration fee.

  4. Obtain Necessary Permits and Licenses

    Determine which permits or licenses you need based on your business type.
    Refer to the Permis de commerces site for specifics.
    Ensure you remain compliant to avoid penalties.

  5. Register for Sales Tax

    Determine if you need to collect QST and GST.
    Register for a QST account with Revenu Québec.
    If necessary, also register for a GST account with the CRA.

  6. Set Up a Workers Compensation Account

    If you need an account based on having employees, Register with the CNESST and Keep updated records for all employees.

  7. Establish Your Business Location

    Find a location that meets all your business needs, Ensure it complies with local zoning laws, Consider factors like accessibility and proximity.

  8. Regularly Update Your Business Registration

    Stay compliant with Quebec's business regulations, Avoid fines and complications by keeping records updated

1. Determine Your Business Structure

Before registering, decide the type of business structure suitable for your venture: sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation. Each has its advantages, tax implications, and responsibilities.

  • Sole Proprietorship: This is a simple business structure where the business owner and the business are considered the same entity.
  • Partnership: Here, two or more individuals share the ownership, responsibilities, and profits of the business.
  • Corporation: This is a separate legal entity, distinct from its owners, providing limited liability protections.

2. Choose and Reserve a Business Name

Your business name is your brand. It should reflect what you do and be easily remembered. In Quebec, the name should typically be in French or have a French version.

  • Search the Registraire des Entreprises to ensure your desired name isn’t taken.
  • Once chosen, reserve the name to ensure it remains available while you finalize your registration.

3. Register with the Registraire des entreprises

The next step is the actual registration of your business. For most business types, registration with the Registraire des entreprises is mandatory.

  • You can apply online, which is more efficient and straightforward.
  • Ensure you have all necessary documents ready, and pay the registration fee.

4. Obtain Necessary Permits and Licenses

Depending on your business’s nature, you might need specific permits or licenses from provincial or municipal bodies.

  • Refer to the Permis de commerces site for details on required permits.
  • Remember, without the right permits, your business might face penalties or shut down.

5. Register for Sales Tax

In Quebec, businesses are typically required to collect and remit the Quebec Sales Tax (QST) and the Goods and Services Tax (GST).

  • Register for a QST account with Revenu Québec.
  • Additionally, if applicable, register for a GST account with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

6. Set Up a Workers Compensation Account

If you have employees, you’ll need to set up an account with the Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST).

  • This ensures coverage for work-related injuries or diseases.
  • Regularly review and update your account based on the number of employees and other changes in your business.

7. Establish Your Business Location

Whether you’re setting up a physical store or an office, ensure it complies with local zoning laws and regulations.

  • Consult with the municipality where your business will be located for specifics.
  • Remember to consider factors like accessibility, visibility, and proximity to suppliers or customers.

8. Regularly Update Your Business Registration

Keeping your business details updated is crucial. If there are changes in ownership, address, or other vital information, ensure you notify the Registraire des entreprises.

  • Regular checks ensure you remain compliant with Quebec’s business regulations.
  • Remember, failure to update can result in fines or complications with the legal status of your business.

Registering a business in Quebec involves multiple steps that ensure your venture complies with the province’s legal and regulatory standards. Regularly review and update your registration, and always seek advice from professionals for a smooth business journey.