The “Investor” Application Requirements
The Federal Investor Program re-opened on December 1st 2010. On July 1st 2011, the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration introduced a cap of 700 on new federal investor applications. On July 15th 2011 the following announcement was made:
The Federal Immigrant Investor Program is now closed as 700 complete applications have been received at the Centralized Intake Office. This new annual cap was introduced through ministerial instructions, which came into force on July 1, 2011. The cap will reset on July 1, 2012, unless otherwise indicated in a future ministerial instruction.
PLEASE NOTE: The cap does not apply to the Quebec Immigrant Investor Program.
In order to qualify for the Quebec Immigrant Investor Program an applicant must have the intention of residing in Quebec. There is not, however, a minimum time requirement for the applicant to reside in that province. If successful in the Quebec Immigrant Investor program then you are issued with a federal permanent residency visa which allows you to live in any part of Canada.
An investor application is misnamed. There is no investment. Rather, there is an interest free loan that you give to the government. The government will return your funds after five years without any interest. Your cost is the lost interest that you would have earned if you did not give the loan to the government. You may borrow the funds ($800,000) without providing any security if you use a Canadian financial institution. They do not require any security because they understand that the government is guaranteeing that the funds will be returned. This means that you can effectively purchase a visa for about C$120,000 to C$240,000 depending on prevailing interest rates, as long as you meet the other requirements.
There are no age or language requirements nor is there a requirement to operate a business in Canada. However, in addition to the loan, there are two requirements. First, you (and your spouse/partner) must have a worldwide net worth (all assets minus all debts) of at least C$1,600,000. You do not need to liquidate any of these assets or bring them to Canada. Second, you must have at least two years of management experience. This experience may be in the private or public sector. Therefore, this type of visa is ideal for those who do not want any commitments after they migrate, including retirees.
The Government Commission
The investor visa is one of the focus areas of our firm. Some advisors and banks do not reveal that there is commission paid by the government to the bank that handles the loan to the government. The bank usually passes on part of the commission to the advisor who represents you with the government. Advisors can be immigration consultants or immigration lawyers. Please see the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page for the difference between these two kinds of advisors.
We believe it is unethical for an advisor or a bank not to fully explain in detail how the commission works and to get your approval of the amount of the commission. The commission may create conflicts of interest between you and your advisor and the bank that you are dealing with. To avoid this conflict of interest, you should be made fully aware of the commission so that our loyalty is only to you and your best interests.
The Immigration Process
First you apply. Then you receive approval. Then you invest. Then you are allowed to immigrate. Expect 12-24 months before you are allowed to immigrate from when you hire us.
How We Will Increase Your Chances of Success
With our 18 years of experience advising Canadian immigrants, we will advise you and prepare your application so that your application is well supported and is as strong as possible. This will reduce the risk of delays and refusals.
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