Apply For Self-Employed Persons Program

Self-Employed Persons Program

The Self-Employed Persons Program allows foreign cultural activities or athletics to immigrate to Canada permanently.

Simply put, applicants who can establish their own employment in Canada are at Step 1 of the Self-Employed Persons program (SEP). SEP applicants must have relevant self-employment experience and make a significant contribution to the cultural, artistic, or athletic life of Canada. Purchasing and managing an existing firm in Canada is an option under SEP.


To be self-employed means that after immigrating to Canada, applicants do not take up jobs in the Canadian labor force but rather create jobs for themselves or other workers through personal business ventures.

SEP Eligibility

SEP applicants must satisfy the following requirements in order to apply:

  • In the past 5 years, they have at least 2 years of relevant experience, that they:
    • either gained independently or by participating at a world-class level (specific artistic achievements or awards) in cultural activities or athletics;
    • have been a self-employed person in cultural activities or athletics; or
    • a combination of a one-year being self-employed, and a one-year period participating at a world-class level in relevant activities.
  • Be able to create jobs for themselves and even other workers in Canada;
  • Have willingness and ability to contribute to Canadian culture and sports;
  • Earn a points assessment of at least 35 points out of 100;
  • Must meet medical requirements; and
  • No criminal record.

Points-Based Selection Criteria


There are five selection criteria for SEP: education, experience, age, language proficiency, and adaptability. 

Soccer, basketball, and sports trophies
Selection FactorsMaximum Points GivenExamples
Education Level255 points for high school education
25 points for a master degree
Work Experience 3520 points for 2 years, plus 5 points for each additional year
Age10Full points for age 21 – 49, minus 2 points after each year
Language Ability2416 points maximum for the first language (Example: English)
Up to 8 points for the second language (Example: French)
Adaptability6Spouse's education can add 3-5 points

Qualifying Occupations For SEP

NOC CodeOccupations
5112Conservators and Curators
5121Authors and Writers
5124Professional Occupations in Public Relations and Communications
5125Translators, Terminologists and Interpreters
5131Producers, Directors, Choreographers and Related Occupations
5132Conductors, Composers and Arrangers
5133Musicians and Singers
5135Actors and Comedians
5136Painters, Sculptors and Other Visual Artists
5211Library and Archive Technicians
5212Technical Occupations Related to Museums and Art Galleries
5222Film and Video Camera Operators
5223Graphic Arts Technicians
5224Broadcast Technicians
5225Audio and Video Recording Technicians
5226Other Technical and Co-ordinating Occupations in Motion Pictures, Broadcasting and the Performing Arts
5227Support Occupations in Motion Pictures, Broadcasting and the Performing Arts
5231Announcers and Other Broadcasters
5232Other Performers
5241Graphic Designers and Illustrators
5242Interior Designers
5243Theatre, Fashion, Exhibit and Other Creative Designers
5244Artisans and Craftspersons
5245Pattern makers – Textile, Leather and Fur Products
5253Sports Officials and Referees
5254Program Leaders and Instructors in Recreation, Sport and Fitness

You are welcome to contact us for professional advice on Self-Employed Person program. We will also provide any assistance to help you and your family settle in Canada.