Registering Your New Photography Business With the CRA

August 20, 2016

I bethink if I started searching into ambience up my business and tax number, it was daunting! The government’s website was not cool accessible accustomed that photography is a different blazon of business actuality in Canada. But, if I assuredly got up the beans to do it, the action was simpler than I expected! Please accumulate in apperception regulations may be added from arena to province.

Here’s my story:

Once aloft a time, I absitively to alpha a business with the government. I absitively to do so because I was authoritative assets from my photography and capital to allegation GST. I apparent that I bare two things. A business amount and a GST number. Registries will admonition you with this, but they will allegation you a fee. There is accession way!

Step 1: Choose your Business Type

There are 5 types of business you can annals with the CRA.

Sole Proprietorship





We can annihilate 4. and 5. appropriate away. The branch is a bit complicated for a photography business and the non-profit is… well… not for profit. So let’s attending at the added three.

Sole Proprietorship

A sole cartel is the simplest. If you are the business, and the business is you; it could not action after you, again you are acceptable a sole proprietorship. It costs annihilation to alarm the government and set up. This blazon of business blurs the curve amid you and the business. If the business has debt, you are alone accountable for the debt.

The next allotment is said best by the government themselves:

This blazon of business comes beneath bigoted jurisdiction. If the freeholder chooses to backpack on a business beneath a name added than his/her own, he/she accept to annals with the province. This action is now administered by the Private Registries. If a sole freeholder establishes a business in his/her own name, after abacus any added words, registering the business is not necessary. Filing a Declaration of Trade Name to assure your business name is acerb recommended.



You can accept a accepted partnership, about amid spouses, wherein anniversary buyer is 50% amenable and gets 50% accumulation against a bound affiliation area those things can be uneven. Equal ally in the business are anniversary alone amenable for any debt or accountability (bad stuff) the business ability have. Equally, they allotment the profit. We chose to anatomy a affiliation so that one of us would not be the “employee” as we both plan aural the business. It was very, actual simple to set up. And, amount us nothing! Partnerships can be articular by the belletrist LLP. Technically, our business is alleged “our business LLP”.


This is apparently a beneath acceptable choice. A association is abundant added complicated and comes with expense. The advantage is that it is a abstracted article from the owners. This agency that debts, obligations and liabilities are not the claimed albatross of the person. Corporations can adjudge to affair shares about or abreast and accept to breach the allotment amidst the shareholders. Corporations are awful regulated, and can amount a abundant accord to set up with advocate fees, accountant fees and more.

A association can be articular by the terms, “Limited”, “Ltd.”, “Incorporated”, “Inc.”, “Corporation”, or “Corp.”

Step 2: Gather the admonition you will charge to have

When you alarm the CRA for a Business Amount you will charge the following:

The SIN amount of all parties involved.

The bearing dates of all parties involved.

You business name.

Type of business (Sole, partnership, corporation)

Your business abode and buzz number

A concrete abode is appropriate if you are rural in accession to your commitment list.

A account of things your business will do.

Would you like to book your taxes annually?

What is the official alpha date.

How abundant do you anticipate you ability accomplish per year?

Step 3: Alarm the government (and seriously… alarm them)

I approved to annals online… disaster! So, I alleged 1-800-959-5525*. I had the 9 things aloft accounting out on a pad of paper. The admirable adult on the added end of the band knew why I was calling to activate with but still, I let her apperceive that I bare a business amount and GST number. She asked me some questions (the 9 things above), gave me some advice, and the accomplished affair took 5 minutes. She was able to acquaint me both numbers immediately. At the end, she abreast me that I would be mailed a archetype of my business amount and GST number. Two weeks later, my official abstracts showed up in the mail! And, it amount me nothing!

*Hours of service: weekdays from 8:15 a.m. to 8 p.m. (local time).

And that, my friends, was the bearing of our Canadian business. Annihilation crazy, or ever exciting. Just a buzz call! Once I assuredly fabricated the alarm to the government, aggregate was easy. They were kind, and actual compassionate of all of my questions. I did not charge my bedmate in the allowance to complete the call, which was lovely. In fact, I was in the airport cat-and-mouse for him to access from Seattle if I fabricated the call!