Starting and Growing a Business: Regulations

 
 
Subscribe to our free E-Newsletter, "Agri-News" (formerly RTW This Week)Agri-News
This Week
 
 
 
 Business number | Taxation | Permits and licences | Manpower and labour | Innovation, patents & trademarks | Food packaging and labelling
.
All three levels of government have legislated acts and regulations pertaining to business. Part of the planning process is examining requirements for permits, licenses, packaging and labeling.

Business Number

All businesses operating in Canada must obtain a Business Number (BN) from Canada Revenue Agency. The BN which is a new numbering system that simplifies and streamlines the way businesses deal with Canada Revenue Agency. It is based on the idea of "one business, one number." A business gets a BN the first time it registers with Canada Revenue Agency. Eventually, businesses will be able to use their BN for other Federal government programs.

The BN consists of two parts - the registration number and the account identifier. The four major Canada Revenue Agency business accounts and the account identifiers are as follows:

  • corporate income tax (RC);
  • import/export (RM);
  • payroll deductions (RP); and
  • GST/HST (RT).
Businesses that register for the BN get one - stop business services from Canada Revenue Agency, including integrated new business registration, a consolidated approach for updating account information, and integrated business account enquiries.

Contact:
Canada Revenue Agency

Edmonton District Tax Services
Ste. 10, 9700 Jasper Avenue
Edmonton, AB T5J 4C8
Tel: (780) 495-3500
Toll-Free: 1-800-959-5525
Fax: (780) 495-3533
Calgary District Tax Services
220 - 4 Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 0L1
Tel: (403) 233-5130
Toll-Fee: 1-800-959-5525
Fax: (403) 264-5843

Business registration on-line

Taxation

All businesses operating in Alberta are subject to three levels of taxation: local, provincial and federal.

Local taxation
The local taxation system is based almost entirely on property tax. Most property in Alberta is subject to assessment and taxation, including land, buildings and structures, machinery and equipment used for manufacturing and processing. Some municipal governments also levy business taxes. This tax is usually a percentage of the gross rental value or floor space of the premises.

Contact: Assessment and Tax Department of your municipality. Links to Alberta cities and towns.

Provincial and federal corporate taxation
All corporate residents in Canada are subject to income tax levied upon income earned within the taxation year from all sources, worldwide. The owners of proprietorships and partnerships are required to record earnings as self-employed income in their personal income tax return. Corporations are required to file a return separate from the owner's prepared tax return. Corporations located in Alberta must submit separate income tax returns to the Federal government and to the Alberta government.

Contact:
Alberta Revenue

Room 426, Terrace Bldg
9515-107 Street
Edmonton, AB T5K 2C3
Tel: (780) 427-3035
Fax: (780) 427-1147
revenue.webmaster@gov.ab.ca

Canada Revenue Agency
Edmonton District Tax Services
Ste. 10, 9700 Jasper Avenue
Edmonton, AB T5J 4C8
Tel: (780) 495-3500
Toll-Free: 1-800-959-5525
Fax: (780) 495-3533
Calgary District Tax Services
220 - 4 Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 0L1
Tel: (403) 233-5130
Toll-Fee: 1-800-959-5525
Fax: (403) 264-5843

The Income Tax Division of Canada Revenue Agency provides free booklets to help small businesses with their taxation responsibilities.

Goods and services tax (GST)
Most businesses and organizations carrying on commercial activities in Canada have to register for and collect the Goods and Services Tax (GST). You must register for the GST if you are a person, business or organization operating in Canada with worldwide annual revenues from taxable supplies of goods and services over $30,000. Although small firms may not have to register for the GST, they may find it to their advantage to do so.

Contact:
Canada Revenue Agency
Edmonton District Tax Services
Ste. 10, 9700 Jasper Avenue
Edmonton, AB T5J 4C8
Tel: (780) 495-3500
Toll-Free: 1-800-959-5525
Fax: (780) 495-3533
Calgary District Tax Services
220 - 4 Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 0L1
Tel: (403) 233-5130
Toll-Fee: 1-800-959-5525
Fax: (403) 264-5843

Manpower and Labour

Payroll deductions - Canada pension (CPP), employment insurance (EI), income tax
Federal law requires that all employers collect and remit Canada Pension contributions (CPP), Employment Insurance (EI) premiums and personal income tax to the Government of Canada. Deductions for EI and CPP contributions are shared by the employee and employer.

Contact: Local Canada Revenue Agency Tax Service Office

Wages, hours of work
Employment Standards of Alberta Human Resources and Employment is responsible for administering the labor standards provisions under the Employment Standards Code. Issues include wages, hours of work, vacations and general holiday pay, maternity leave, termination of employment, and the employment of adolescents and young persons.

Links for more information on:
Alberta health insurance plan
All employers with five or more eligible employees are required to form a group plan for payroll deduction of health care premiums.

Contact: Alberta Health Insurance Plan

Head Office, 10025 Jasper Avenue
Edmonton, AB T5J 2N3
Tel: (780) 427-1432
Fax: (780) 422-0102
2nd Floor, McLaws Building
407 - 8 Avenue SW
Calgary, AB T2P 1E5
Tel: (403) 297-6411

Workers compensation
Under Alberta legislation, employers must register with the Workers Compensation Board.

Workers' compensation is a disability insurance system set up under the Alberta Workers' Compensation Act that protects both employers and workers against the impact of work injuries. It compensates injured workers for lost income, health care and other costs related to a work related injury. It protects employers from being sued by workers if they are injured on the job. This system brings stability and protection to the workplace by providing coverage at a cost shared by all employers. It also protects employers and workers against the risks and expenses of injury and the uncertainties of litigation.

General enquiries:
Workers Compensation Board
Box 2415, Edmonton, AB T5J 2S5
Street Address: 9912 - 107 Street, Edmonton
Tel: (780) 498-3999 / Calgary (403) 517-6000
Fax: (780) 498-7999 / Calgary (403) 517-6201

Permits and Licenses

General municipal business licensing requirements
Most businesses require a municipal license. Fees vary depending on the specific business. The licensing department will refer your application to the local board of health, fire and police departments for their approval.

As well, all businesses must conform to zoning and by-law regulations designated by municipal governments.
Construction and leasehold improvements require prior approval by the planning and building departments. Municipalities require a development building permit prior to issuance of any business license. Know your area's zoning laws and obtain your permits before your build or sign a lease.

Contact the building or planning department in your municipality for information on the development permit process and steps in applying for a business license.
Requirement for a food processing business
Food safety requirements (a series document provided by Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development)

Innovation, Patents & Trademarks

Canadian Industrial Innovation Centre for Inventors, Entrepreneurs and Innovative Companies
The Canadian Innovation Centre (CIC) is Canada's leading organization dedicated to assisting inventors and innovative companies. Our range of services includes invention evaluation, technology due diligence, market research, and education programs.

Index to Manual of Classification of Patents
The Manual of Classification has over 400 classes. The Index to the Classification helps you determine the class of your idea by searching keywords.

Food Packaging and Labelling

Fair Labelling Practices Program - Canadian Food Inspection Agency
Food Labeling - Health Canada
U.S. food labelling guide
U.S. nutrition labelling manual

This document series is done in co-operation with

 
 
 
 
Share via AddThis.com
For more information about the content of this document, contact Kathy Bosse.
This document is maintained by Ordella Knopf.
This information published to the web on November 6, 2001.
Last Reviewed/Revised on January 5, 2017.