How To Open A Business Bank Account In Canada

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The steps involved with opening a business bank account in Canada

Canada has one of the world’s strongest economies, and an ever growing skilled workforce.

Canada is a highly diverse country, with great natural resources and strong trade agreements with other nations, making it a great place to do business.

One thing every business needs is a bank account, and its wonderful that Canada has some of the world’s most reliable banks.

Canadian banks consistently rank among the best in the world when it comes to security, placing first in 2016 and third in 2017.

So, we’ve decided to put together a useful guide on opening a business bank account in Canada, in the hope it helps make life easier for you and your business.

How to open a bank account in Canada

Do I need to be Canadian?

No, you don’t. You don’t even have to be a permanent resident. You also do not necessarily need to intend to immigrate to Canada.

There are no residency requirements for opening a business bank account in Canada.

Do I need to be in Canada to open my account?

In Canada, some banks require your presence while you open a business account and some don’t.

However, if you decide to open an account without visiting, this often comes with much greater requirements and account restrictions. Because this varies from bank to bank, you should call the bank you want to chose directly.

Several international banks have operations in Canada. So it could be worth visiting a branch that is local to you. You may be able to open an account in your home country that can be transferred to Canada.

Unfortunately in this situation, you will be charged more expensive fees for holding the account internationally, and may require a high minimum balance.

What documents do I need to open a business bank account in Canada?

Opening a bank account in Canada is a straightforward process that does not take more than a day, once you have everything you need.  

All companies require two valid forms of identification for the business owner, including at least one photo ID and at least one document that is government issued.

But, the other required documents do vary depending on the type of business. The documents required for each business type are as follows:

Corporations

  • 2 pieces of ID of those who will be the corporation’s signing authorities
  • Articles of Incorporation/Association
  • Certificate of Status
  • Corporate Profile Report
  • Certificate of Existence
  • Certificate of Compliance
  • Corporate Annual Government Filing
  • Notice of Assessment for Income Tax
  • Business Number
  • Business License

Partnerships and Limited Partnerships

  • Registered declaration of partnership
  • Copy of partnership agreement
  • Trade name registration

Sole Proprietorships

  • Trade name registration
  • Master business license

Steps for opening a business bank account in Canada

What Bank should I choose?

All of the above business types have different needs when it comes to banking. Before you open a business bank account, you should research which banks offer the services you really need.

Here in Canada, the banking industry is significantly more centralized than in some countries, particularly compared to the neighbouring United States.

Five banks control 90% of the retail banking industry in Canada, and each institution has its own set of features that may benefit your business more than another.

The five banks you should research are:

  • Royal Bank of Canada (RBC)
  • Toronto-Dominion (TD)
  • Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank)
  • Bank of Montreal (BMO)
  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC)
What bank fees are there in Canada?

Unfortunately, no matter where in the world you open a bank account, you can expect it to come with an annoying list of fees. Canada is no exception.

Fees in Canada typically include the standard monthly/annual maintenance fees, debit fees, ATM fees, and deposit fees.

When conducting business from Canada, you should be way of the high fees charged by banks to send money overseas.

Along with these fees, many banks charge an unfair exchange rate for international payments.

While not unreasonable for banks to make a markup, some banks charge much more than others – especially when it comes to currencies which are not heavily traded.

The rates you see on boards in banks/exchange bureaus are never that day’s true Foreign Exchange market ones. They are always higher, because the additional variable fees the bank is charging are included.

What is the best way to send money internationally from Canada?

If you open a business here in Canada, REMITR won’t let borders stop you running an international business.

Our service allows companies to send money to over 150 countries worldwide at any time.

With REMITR, you get the best live foreign exchange rate –  regardless of banking hours.

We also offer guaranteed savings, charging a flat fee as low as $5 – no matter how much money you want to send!

The beneficiary receives all the money that you send; we don’t charge any sneaky receiver fees when you send to them in their local currency.

There’s no waiting around either. Traditional bank wire transfers take days, if not weeks to process.
With REMITR, funds become available within 1 business day, if not instantly.

Time is money, save them both by getting in touch with REMITR today.