Small Business Information


Tips for Helping you Start Your Own Business


Alderville First Nation











Prepared By Scott Abraham

With Material Provided by the Business Advisory Centre – Northumberland

March 2004



Brochure From Business Development Bank of Canada











Aboriginal Business Service Network
















CDC’ s are non-profit corporations that provide financial services to start-up and existing businesses in their communities. Some also offer management and individual counselling at no charge or for a minimal fee. Many of the CDC’s across Canada also work with or co-ordinate the Self-Employment Assistance Program sponsored by the Canada Employment Centres. Business loans are available for start-up or expansion proposals that create and/or maintain permanent jobs. These loans are administered by a volunteer board of directors made up of well-known local business people. Upon approval, repayment terms are flexible and designed to bring maximum advantage to the client’s business. Interest rates vary.


For more information contact your local CDC:



For businesses located in the municipalities of Colborne/Cramahe, Cobourg, or Port Hope and the Townships of Alnwick, Haldimand, Hamilton, or Hope. Business loans can be approved for up to $75,000 for start-up or existing business financing. Contact Susan Latta at Tel: (905) 372-8315 Fax: (905) 372-2238 or E-mail at Web Community Futures is located at 1005 William St., Suite 206, Cobourg, Ontario K9A 5J4.



For businesses in the Municipalities of Brighton, Campbellford/Seymour, Stirling/Rawdon and Deseronto, the Townships of Brighton, Percy and Tyendinaga and the City’s of Quinte West and Belleville. Business loans can be approved for up to $125,000. Information and counselling also available. Contact Gerrit DeBruyn, Business Manager at Tel: (613) 961-7999 Fax: (613) 961-7998 E-mail: [email protected] Website: . Trenval is located at 284B Walbridge Loyalist Rd., P.O Box 610, Belleville, Ontario K8N 5B3









Canada Small Business Financing (CSBF) Program

The CSBF Program, under the Canada Small Business Financing Act, can help businesses obtain term loans of up to $250,000 to help finance fixed assets, necessary for the operation of the business including:

*the purchase or improvement of real property ;

*the purchase of leasehold improvements or improvements to leased property; and

*the purchase or improvement of new or used equipment necessary for the operation of the business.


The loans are made directly by approved lenders to businesses (excluding farming) operating for profit. CSBF loans proceeds cannot be used to:

*improve a family dwelling for non-commercial purposes;

*purchase shares;

*finance working capital (finance inventory, accounts receivable, etc.);

*permits and licenses used in the operation of eligible assets;

*franchise fees;

*feasibility studies;

*professional fees (e.g. legal, accounting and appraisal);

* survey costs;

*building permits;

*vehicle for personal use;

*intangibles (i.e. research and development costs, prepaid expenses, good will, etc,); or

*purchase real estate for resale.


For further information on loans under the Canada Small Business Financing Program, visit Industry Canada’s Web site at http://strategis.ic.gc.caISSG/laOl 107e.html or contact a participating major chartered bank, trust or loan company for the necessary application forms. You may also contact Industry Canada at (613) 954-5540.




Previously called the Federal Business Development Bank (FBDB) the BDC is a Crown corporation that promotes and assists most types of businesses in Canada either at the start-up stages or at any other stage in their development. BDC offers several different loan programs, venture capital, management counselling and training as well as a variety of publications. The BDC also has special initiatives designed to meet the particular needs of certain entrepreneurs women, aboriginal groups, young people and member of ethno cultural communities. For more information, please contact the BDC at 1-888-463-6232 or in


                         Oshawa                                                (905) 721-5032
                         Peterborough                                        (705) 750-4801




The Micro Business Program combines personalized management support (counselling) with term financing of up to $25,000 for start-up businesses. The program also features two years of follow-up mentoring and management support. A micro business generally has fewer than 5 employees, requires $25,000 or less in start-up financing and has annual sales of under $500,000. The program provides term loans for a wide variety of purposes including improving cash flow, acquiring fixed assets, covering start-up costs and for specific requirements, such as market surveys and product research. The Micro Business Program involves a four- stage process 1.) Project preparation (self-assessment and business plan preparation), 2.) Management Support, 3.) Financing and 4.) Ongoing Support. Program fees may be involved and are based on individual’s needs. For more information contact the Business Development Bank of Canada.





The Self-employment program provides El recipients or other potential unemployed candidates with income support, coaching and technical assistance to help start a business. Once accepted into this program, the participant must work full-time at establishing their business and will be allowed to receive full benefits for a maximum of 52 weeks. For further information, please contact your local Human Resources Canada Centre.


Cobourg office: 1005 William ST., Suite 103, Cobourg, Ontario K9A 5J4 Phone: (905) 372-3326 Website:





Aboriginal Business Canada provides a range of programs and services in support of business ventures to Aboriginal entrepreneurs and communities. This includes:


     Advice and counselling by business development officers

     Business planning assistance

     Management training and networking/matchmaking opportunities

     Research and advocacy activities

     Access to reference, planning materials and sourcing databases

     Market expansion and trade development

     Referrals to other programs and services

     Introduction to Aboriginal Capital corporations or alternate lenders


For more information contact Aboriginal Business Canada, Industry Canada at Ph: (416) 973-8800 Fax: (416) 973-2255 Email: [email protected] Website:






The Aboriginal Business Service Network is an information centre which provides accurate, timely and relevant information for the Aboriginal business community concerning government programs, services and regulations on starting and operating a business in Ontario. This network also responds by improving access to, and use of business information, services and training, customized to the needs of the Aboriginal community. For further information, please contact the Network at 1-877-668-2272 Website: Http:// or visit the ABSN head office located in Toronto at 151 Yonge St., 5th Floor.






Agriculture is Farm Credit Corporation’s (FCC) only business. FCC is dedicated exclusively to financing the needs of Canada’s primary producers and small to medium-sized agribusiness. As a federal Crown corporation, FCC also plays a public policy role, delivering federal programs and services that meet the unique needs of agriculture. FCC can lend money for any farm-related purpose land, buildings, equipment, land improvements, quota, livestock, agribusiness or value-added enterprises and diversification initiatives. FCC can lend to new and established farmers with or without off-farm income, for any size of operation. For more information, contact the Farm Credit Corporation at 1-800-387-3232 or Bill Adam, Campbellford Field Office Ph: (705) 653-1760 Fax: (705) 653-3326 Website:









1)          A loan maybe obtained for up to $15,000.00 through the Town of Cobourg for improvements to a building. The interest rate is 1% below prime and a payback schedule will be arranged.


2)         A $1,000.00 grant for façade improvement is available through the Cobourg Branch of the Architecture Conservancy. The purpose of this grant is for such things as improvements to signage, awnings etc.


3)          Development and building/planning fees will be waived for any kind of renovation done in the heritage conservation district.


4)         A municipal tax credit is available for anyone who makes improvements to their buildings. For example, after your renovations are complete and the property has been re-assessed, any increase in assessment will not affect the municipal portion of your taxes for a 10-year period.


If the building or portions thereof are sold within the l0-year period, the first new owner will continue with the municipal tax credit. The period is not renewed as the original contract period is in effect. Further, the outstanding loan must be paid back in full to the Town prior to the benefit being passed onto the new owner.


Contact the Town of Cobourg, Finance Department Ph: (905) 372-8944






Industrial and Commercial construction projects are exempt from paying development charges within the Town of Cobourg.


Note:    Other Municipalities within Northumberland County may offer similar programs. Please feel free to contact the Municipal Finance Department in your area of consideration.











By phone, fax, the world wide web or in person, the Canada-Ontario Business Service Centre (COBSC) is a single access point for comprehensive business information on over 1,400 government programs, services, regulations and contacts from 29 federal departments and 12 provincial ministries. It is a joint venture between the Government of Canada, managed by Industry Canada in Ontario, and the Province of Ontario, managed by the Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Tourism. The two major services provided are the call centre and the Regional Access Sites.




The COBSC call centre was opened in February 1995, and offers Ontarians personal service from specialty-trained information agents who have instant access to the Centre’s information resources. Through the Info-Fax fax-on-demand system, callers can have documents faxed directly to them within minutes. And a visit to the Web sites enables clients to browse through a variety of information on starting and operating a business in Ontario, and provides links to other useful sites. Information can be accessed 24 hours a day and all questions will be answered within 24 hours during the regular work week. Contact the Call Centre at Ph: (416) 954 INFO (4636) or 1-800-567-2345            Fax: (416) 954-8555 or 1-800-240-4192 E-mail: [email protected] Website:





To extend the services of the call centre, the COBSC has regionalized its operations by creating a network of regional access sites in communities across Ontario, through partnerships with Industry Canada, on behalf of the COBSC, and established business intermediaries. These intermediaries include Community Futures Development Corporations, provincially-sponsored Business Self-Help Offices (such as the Business Advisory Centre), and local and regional governments. Federal funding ensures the regional access sites are equipped with a business information library of print and electronic resources, a public access computer workstation connected to the Internet, training of staff in the use of COBSC products and research practices, and the services of a central Help Desk to support regional sites. For further information, contact regional access site at the Business Advisory Centre at Ph: (905) 372-9279 Fax: (905) 372-1306 E-mail: [email protected] Website: http:/






WRED is a federally incorporated non-profit community economic development (CED) organization dedicated to enhancing the sustainability of rural Ontario communities. WRED provides programs that enhance business development, life skills, networking, access to capital business diversification including agriculture and awareness of rural community economic development. This organization ensures women s participation, builds local leadership capacity, offers rural perspective and seeks to build partnership alliances. Individual counselling and specific business training programs are offered in this program. For more information, please contact Lynda Rickard, WRED, 1-800-407-6419 E-mail: [email protected]






“Micro-credit” can be defined as small loans made to individuals to undertake self-employment or to start very small businesses. This type of financing may be provided through a number of different sources: independent non-profit organizations, community economic development programs, commercial financial institutions, etc. Usually, a micro-credit lender serves a particular geographic area or community, or a particular group. The loans are typically under $5,000 and for entrepreneurs who have not been able to secure financing through traditional lenders. Many micro-credit lenders offer some form of technical assistance such as business training, mentoring, peer exchanges and/or networking opportunities in conjunction with their loans.


For a listing of some of the sources of micro-credit financing in Ontario, contact COBSC at 1-800-567-2345 or (416) 775-3456.





Employers who operate a business in Ontario, who are looking to hire, provide on-the-job training, and are seeking people who are willing and ready to work. Through the program, employers are able to find the right person for the job and may reduce the costs associated with training a new employee through a wage subsidy (a maximum $4 per hour). Job Connect will provide employees with services such as an Information and Referral Service, Employment Planning and Preparation and On-the-Job Training. For further information, please contact the Ministry of Education and Training, Toronto, Ontario Tel: (416) 326-5656 or 1-800-387-5656 Fax: (416) 326-5868.






Websites for Entrepreneurs


Need to research your market? Want more information on how to prepare a business plan? To grow your existing business? To finance... The Internet the best research and library tool for entrepreneurs. Here is a list of websites that we have found helpful. You’ll probably find many more along the way.




Starting Points


Northumberland Business Self-Help Office

Learn how the Business Self-Help Office can help you as you go through the process of starting and running your own business. As well learn more about student entrepreneurship programs like Summer Company!


Canada/Ontario Business Call Centre

COBSC provides access to accurate up-to-date and relevant business information. They are also an access point for information on over 1,400 business related programs and services offered by the federal and provincial government. A great resource for info on topics such as financing, incorporating and more. The Starting a Small Business in Ontario book can be found at


Go Solo

A site for new or existing small business looking towards expanding their current operations. A great link that provides information on everything from raising start-up capital to creating effective marketing plans. Also, included is in-depth advice on e-commerce. A specialist’s directory is also available through Go Solo, which provides you with phone numbers and links to manufacturers, resellers, and various other businesses in Canada.



Research Tools

This is one of Canada’s largest websites. It provides easy, direct access to Industry Canada’s extensive on-line business resource library. It contains over 75,000 reports and a database of Canadian businesses, which can be manipulated to your statistical needs.


The Small Business Policy Branch

This website has been designed specifically for small business researchers and policy makers. The site includes more than 1500 key reports on small business financing, key policy documents, frequently asked questions on key statistics on small business topics and more.


Statistics Canada

Great for market research. This website has information on everything ever tabulated, researched indexed and qualified. Of particular use is the section on the Canadian economy, with its subsections on international trade, manufacturing and construction, and primary industries. Research everything from the demographics of your target market to the buying patterns of that market.


Statistics Canada’s Business Data

A new resource available through Statistics Canada that is devoted to guiding small and medium-sized business to the valuable data and analysis that is available.


Better Business Bureau

A helpful organization that will assist you in researching the credibility of a potential franchise or supplier you are interested in conducting business with. Acting on behalf of Canada and the United States, it also posts alerts and complaints issued against businesses.



If your business plan requires information about Ontario’s economy, this website provides business facts and figures, community profiles and provincial statistics.





Business Development Bank of Canada

Considered a “hub site” it includes more than 300 hyperlinks to small business resources available from coast to coast. Descriptions of resources offered by federal and provincial governments, Crown corporations, and regional agencies and chartered banks. Users can browse through topics of interest such as Starting a Business, Expanding Operations, or Exporting.


Toronto Venture Group

This group is a non-profit organization that has been facilitating connections between people and companies interested in turning time into money. Through education, communication, and networking, TVG has successfully introduced positive high potential companies to contacts they need with a goal of developing profitable business relationships. Also provides details on “Venture Fair”, a premier Canadian trade show, which promotes quality emerging and growing companies to investors.


Farm Credit Corporation

FCC provides a wide range of innovative financing solutions to Canadian agricultural communities. It actively supports farmer-controlled diversification initiatives and value-added agricultural operations within and beyond the farm gate.


Aboriginal Business Canada

Aboriginal Business Canada provides business services and support to Canada’s Aboriginal people, whether on or off reserve. It provides a wide range of counselling and training as well as financial assistance to Aboriginal companies.



This website offers an array of resources; at almost no cost. It contains a popular Internet business plan template, a directory of relevant contacts, and advice from America’s leading business experts.


Canadian Youth Business Foundation

This is a non-profit, private sector initiative designed to provide mentoring, business support and financial assistance to entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 to 29. The website provides excellent start-up information and a means for young entrepreneurs all across Canada to network.


More Assistance



“Canada’s online source for business”. Conduct a business search from a database of over one million Canadian companies. This site links to various business websites in North America. Also lists your company with a basic free listing. Online advertising opportunities also available.


The Internet Marketing Center

This is contains over 300 pages of excellent articles covering everything from website promotion to business automation, as well as recent success stories. Browse through the monthly newsletter, and various other research resources. Discover how to promote your business on-line!


Canadian Commercial Corporation

CCC offers exporters a wide range of services to help Canadian businesses conclude sales with foreign governments and international agencies. CCC assures contract performance to a foreign customer, enhancing the Canadian exporter’s chance of securing a contract on advantageous terms.


Trade Show Locator

The TSCentral website represents the next generation of trade and professional event resources. Head to to find new way to add value to your trade or professional event participation.


Canadian Industrial Innovation Centre

Just invented the greatest widget? Now what? Meet the people who can guide you through product evaluation, market feasibility and financing. There is a minimal fee for some services.



For some entrepreneurs staying on top of world events is crucial. Here’s the website that will provide up to the minute reports.










1.          Visit the Business Advisory Centre - Northumberland


The Business Advisory Centre - Northumberland carries a wide variety of information on business related topics. When you visit, you can pick up a free copy of “Starting a Small Business in Ontario” as well as other publications. There is a resource library containing books to help you source suppliers, customers and potential competitors. All resource books are for your use in-office.


We also recommend you make an appointment to meet with the Business Consultant. The Business Consultant can answer specific questions about your business and the start-up of your new venture (e.g. business plan preparation, marketing, financing, bookkeeping, etc.) at no charge to you.




2.       Check with your municipality before you begin


It is important to ensure that your business venture is within the by-laws of your municipality. Usually you will deal with the Planning and Engineering or the Economic Development Department. Ask questions such as:


a.         Is the property zoned properly for the business you will undertake?

b.         Does the building have any restrictions to its use?

c.         What are the sign by-laws?

d.         Are there any parking restrictions or requirements?

e.         Is a permit or license required from the municipality for the type of business you intend to run?

f.          Is there a home-based business by-law that will affect you?



Municipality Contact Information:

Town of Port Hope and Hope

tel:905 885-4544

fax:905 885-7698

P.O.Box 117
Port Hope On., L1A 3V9

Francis Aird
Spencer Hutchison

Township of Hamilton



P.O.Box 160
Cobourg On., K9A 4W5


Scott Jibb
Kate Surerus

Town of Cobourg



55 King St. W., K9A 2M2

Glen McGlashon

Township of Alnwick & Haldimand



P.O.Box 70
Grafton On., K0K 2G0

Mike Godin

Trent Hills



P.O.Box 1030
Campbellford On., K0L 1L0

Dean Finley

Township of Cramahe



P.O.Box 357
Colborne On., K0K 1S0

Beckie Bonisteal

Town of Brighton



P.O.Box 189
Brighton On., K0K 1H0

Rick Jones

Municipality of Clarington



Municipality Clarington
40 Temperance St.
Bowmanville On., L1C 3A6

Contact the planning or zoning dept.





3.       Do a business plan


What is a business plan? It is your statement in words and numbers of what you want to do and what you need to get there. It is your overall strategic plan. It is also a summary of your mission, mandate, market and method. It is your basic reference document in telling your customers, suppliers, bankers and partners, about your track record, your tactics and your targets.


Running a business without a business plan is like driving down a country road on a moonless night without lights and a spare tire. Without it you can plan to fail. If you are seeking financial assistance it is a must.


If you don’t know how to prepare one, there are a number of good books on the market that will guide you step-by-step. There are several books available at the Business Advisory Centre Northumberland in the Business Library and for sale to assist you. The Business Advisory Centre - Northumberland also presents several seminars to assist your with understanding the business plan concept. The Business Consultant can also assist you in areas that you are having problems with.




4.       Register your business name


Unless you plan to operate your business under your personal name (i.e.: Jane Doe) you are required by law to register or incorporate your business, keep in mind that it can only be your Personal name, anything else such as “Jane Doe Consulting Services”, or “Jane’s” or “Doe’s” must be registered. You need a copy of your registration or incorporation to open a business bank account.


There are basically three forms of business registration. They are:


     Sole Proprietorship (1 owner)

     Partnership (2 or more owners)

     Incorporation (a new legal entity)


a.       Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships


The most common, simplest and inexpensive form of registration is the Sole Proprietorship or Partnership. There are three ways of registering a Sole Proprietorship or Partnership:


1.    Via Business Access at the Business Advisory Centre - Northumberland.


Full service is provided and a staff member will process your registration/renewal while you wait. Processing takes approximately 15-20 minutes to complete and your Master Business License will be sent by courier to a location of your choice within 24-36 hours. The cost for a Business Name Registration and Name Check package ranges from $120.00 -$121.15 depending on delivery option. Business Name Registration only ranges from $99.99 -$101.14. Other searches and registrations are also available.



2. At a Computer workstation (O.B.R.A. system)


You can register your business by yourself at a computer workstation at any of the following locations:


Government Information Centre

1st Floor, 300 Water Street South Tower

Peterborough, Ontario K9M 8M5

(705) 755-4427

1 -800-267-8097

Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Monday - Friday)

Workstations: 1


Ministry of Finance Customer Service


33 King St West

Oshawa, Ontario L1H 8H5

(905) 433 6096 Fax: (905) 436-4445

1 -800-263-7965

Hours: 8:30 a.m. 3:30 p.m. (Monday Friday)

Workstations: 1


Ontario Government Information Centre

15 Victoria Ave., P.O. Box 7

Belleville, Ontario K8N 175

(613) 968-3769 Fax: 613-968-3606 1 -800-268-8758

Hours:   8:30 a.m. 4:00 p.m. (Monday - Friday)





The biggest advantage to the computer workstation is that you get a copy of your registration back immediately. The cost to register by computer is $60.00 and a name search is $8.00


Each workstation is self-serve but the software is user friendly and there is staff on hand to help you.



3.      Internet

You may also register via the Internet. Full access on home personal computers may be limited but if you wish to access the site, the site address is:


The cost to register on the internet is $60.00 and it takes approximately 2 weeks to receive your registration papers by mail. Payment is made via the Internet by Visa, MasterCard and American Express only. Name checks are not available at this time. You may also renew your business registration.


4. By mail:


Your registration form can be mailed to:


Ministry of Consumer and Commercial Relations

Registrar of Partnerships, Companies Branch

393 University Avenue, 2nd Floor

Toronto, Ontario M5G 2M2

(416) 314-8880 Fax: (416) 314-0102



The cost to register by mail is $80.00. A name search completed through the mail costs $12.00. It takes approximately six to eight weeks to receive your certified copy back.



b. Incorporating a Business

The process of incorporating a business establishes your business as a distinct, legal entity. As such, incorporation can offer a number of advantages to your business. Some examples being the transferability of business ownership, limited liability and possible tax advantages. Perhaps the biggest disadvantage to incorporation is the cost. While you can do it yourself, it is highly recommended that you have your lawyer or accountant draw up the incorporation papers. Incorporation can cost anywhere from $1,000 or more depending on the complexity of your business and whether you incorporate federally or provincially or utilize the services of a lawyer.



a)        Provincial Incorporation


Persons wishing to incorporate provincially, must file with:


Corporate Services Section

Companies Branch

393 University Avenue, 2nd Floor

Toronto, Ontario M5G 2M2

(416) 314-8880


b)        Federal Incorporation


You would incorporate at the federal level if you intend to base your business outside Ontario or across Canada.


For further information on Federal Incorporation contact:

Industry Canada - Corporations Directorate

Jean Edmonds Tower South, 9th Floor

365 Laurier Avenue West

Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0C8

1 -866-333-5556



5.         Determine whether or not you need a Vendor Permit (PST)


In general if you are selling a product you must charge the Provincial Sales Tax, if you are selling a service you don’t. There are lots of grey areas however, so it is important to determine if your product or service is a taxable. Pick-up a copy of the guide Do You Need A Vendor Permit? For answers to specific questions or for more information, please write or call:


Ministry of Revenue, Retail Sales Tax

1600 Champlain Avenue

Whitby, Ontario LIN 9B2



You can either register for your Vendor’s Permit at this location or at any of the computer workstations where you register your business. You can also now register by phone at: 1-800-668-5810.



6.       Determine whether you should register for the Goods & Services Tax


If your gross revenue (total sales before deducting expenses) will total more than $30,000 in any twelve month period, then you must register for the GST.


Most goods and services are taxed at the rate of 7%. However, some goods and services, such as basic groceries, prescription drugs, and goods and services for export are taxable at 0%; these are zero rated goods and services. If you think your good or service maybe zero rate taxable or even tax exempt, it is a good idea to verify with Revenue Canada, before making the assumption.

If your gross revenue will be less than $30,000 per year, then you can voluntarily register for and charge the GST. When making the decision to do so consider the following:

1.   Will it be an accounting hassle? For some people, particularly those on a manual bookkeeping system, accounting for the GST means another two columns to balance.

2.   If you don’t charge the GST, you can’t get back the GST you paid out on your purchases (Input Tax Credit).

3.   Is it important to your business to appear successful? Not charging the GST will tell the whole world that you don’t make $30,000 a year.

4.   What are your customers used to? If you are in an industry where the customers are use to paying the GST, they may become suspicious if you don’t.

When you register for the GST, you will be issued a Business Number (BN). The Business Number (BN) is similar in concept to the Social Insurance Number (S.I.N.) that individuals have. Once you have your 9 digit BN, you then have one number to remember when you deal with the federal government. Your BN currently works for the following four major Revenue Canada accounts:

1.   Goods and Services Tax (GST)

2.   Payroll Deductions

3.   Import/Export

4.   Corporate Income Tax


From the Business Advisory Centre - Northumberland, obtain the booklet The Business Number and Your Revenue Canada Accounts. It will give a simply explanation of how the BN works and some of the basics on each of the accounts it covers.


For more information, please contact:


Revenue Canada Excise, GST

200 Town Centre Court, Rm. 475

Scarborough, Ontario Ml P 4Y3

1 -800-959-5525



Nearest Offices to Register in Person


Revenue Canada Excise, GST

78 Richmond Street West

Oshawa, Ontario


5th Floor, 185 King Street West

Peterborough, Ontario

K9J 8M3

Fax: (705) 876-6422 (Attention: Business Windows)


11 Station St.

BeIIevilIe, Ontario K89 283


Fax: (613) 969-7845 (Attention: Business Windows)


Note:     When registering in person or by phone, please ensure that you have your Social Insurance Number (S.l.N.)


To register for the GST (Business Number) by phone, call:  1 800 959 5525



7.         Will you be hiring employees?


If you will be hiring one or more employees, here are the steps you need to take:


a)  Register with the Business Services branch of Revenue Canada.


If you already have a BN, this will simply be a quick call to give them your BN and open the Payroll Deductions account.


Revenue Canada Business Services

11 Station Street

                                                              Belleville, Ontario           

K8N 2S3

1 -800-959-5525


Be sure to ask for the ‘New Employer’s Kit”. If you have a computer, ask for the payroll deductions table diskette. It’s a real time saver.



b)   Check with Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (Previously known as Worker’s Compensation)


Most industries in Ontario are covered by the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board. Employers must pay into the accident fund of the Board through assessments on their payrolls.


Ask for the registration kit, which includes information on assessments, coverage, accident reporting requirements and appeals procedures. Employers are required to contact the board within 10 days of employing help, whether they are full time, part time or a family member.


Workplace Safety & Insurance Board

200 Front St. West, 3rd Floor

Toronto, Ontario M5V 3J1

(Call Centre)(416) 344-1007

1-800-387-8638 (Province-wide toll free #)

1 -800-387-5540 (Canada-wide toll free #)


You can also register through Ontario Business Connects


c)   The Employer Health Tax is paid by all employers paying wages to employees who report for work at a permanent workplace in Ontario. All self-employed people in Ontario must pay the Employer Health Tax. As of January 1, 1999, the first $400,000 is exempt. Therefore, if your payroll will be greater than $400,000 per year or if your self-employed net income will be greater than $400,000 per year, then you will have to pay the Employer Health Tax. To register contact:


Employer Health Tax Branch

Ministry of Finance

Ground Floor, 33 King Street West

P.O. Box 627

Oshawa, Ontario L1H 8H5

(905) 436-4561

1 -800-265-9005

d)                 No matter what type of business you are starting or whether your business will be employing one employee or several employees, there are some important rules and regulations to know under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

For more information as it relates to your particular industry or to obtain a copy of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, contact:


Occupational Health and Safety Branch Ministry of Labour

655 Bay Street., 14th Floor

Toronto, Ontario M7A 1T7

(416) 326-7770 Fax: (416) 326-7242



Peterborough Office

300 Water St.

3 .Floor, South Tower

Peterborough, Ontario

K9J 8M5 (705) 755 4700

Fax: (705) 755 4724




Durham Office

67 Thornton Road South

Oshawa, Ontario Lii 5Y1

(905) 433-9416

Fax: (905) 433-9843




e)  Employment Standards


Before you hire an employee, it is important to know what their rights are and what the minimum standards are for pay, vacation, statutory holidays and the like are. To obtain your copy of A Guide to the Employment Standards Act, contact:



Ontario Ministry of Labour, Publications


Information Centre

655 Bay Street., 14th Floor

Toronto, Ontario M7A 1T7

(416) 326-7731


For general inquiries contact:

Employment Standards Information Centre

(416) 326-7160 or 1-800-531-5551


The Ontario Government Building:


Ministry of Labour, Peterborough Office

300 Water Street, 3 Floor, South Tower

Peterborough, ON

K9J 8M5

(705) 755-4427

Fax: (705) 755-1677

1 -800-267-8097




You may also browse the Employment Standards, 2000 on-line at:


8.       Will you be operating a food or health related business?


Check with the local health unit and the Ministry of Health for regulations. Haliburton, Kawartha,      

Pine Ridge District Ministry of Health

Health Unit

200 Rose Glen Road

Port Hope, Ontario L1A 3V6

(905) 885-9100 Fax: (905) 885-9551




Public Health Branch

8 th Floor., 5700 Yonge St.

Toronto, Ontario

M2M 4K5

         (416) 327-7392 Fax: (416) 327-7439






9.       Do you need Business Insurance?


ALL businesses will require some form of Business Insurance. Here is a partial list of the types of insurance you may need to consider:


• General Liability

     Errors & Omissions (sometimes called Professional Liability Insurance)

     Inventory & Assets




If you are running a home based business, don’t be fooled into thinking your home and auto insurance will cover you. Be sure to call your insurer and let them know what you are planning to do. In most cases, there will be no or very little increase to your premiums.


An Insurance Broker can help you assess the types of insurance you will need. A list of brokers can be found in your Yellow Pages.




10.        Do you need professionals?


As an entrepreneur you will be required to wear many hats. Part of being a good entrepreneur is knowing when to do it yourself and when to call in the pros. Yes, they will charge you for their services, but more often than not they will save you money in excess of their fees.


It’s a good idea to find someone you are comfortable with and who knows your industry before you need them.


a)  An accountant


An accountant can help you with the financial aspects of your business plan. In setting up your record keeping, it is a good idea to seek an accountant’s advice so that you will know from the start what records you need to keep and how to do it properly. An accountant can assist you decide what form of business to choose and how to optimize your income tax planning.


There are three recognized designations of accountants in Ontario. Chartered Accountant (C.A.), Certified Management Accountant (C.M.A.), and Certified General Accountant





b)  A lawyer

In business, you will have a lot of dealings that will involve contracts. Some of them will be written; some will be verbal or implied. Your lawyer can help you understand your rights under a contract and advise you on your course of action. It is definitely a good idea to have your lawyer review any documentation before you sign.


A lawyer can also advise you regarding the legal liabilities related to the ownership of your business. Most business incorporations are done through a lawyer.


c)   A marketing consultant


Depending on your business, you may wish to contract a marketing consultant or advertising agency to help you design your ad campaign. Having an ad campaign is not just for big business. A well designed ad campaign with a clear and consistent message together with a well researched marketing plan, will give you greater bang for your advertising buck.