Legal Requirements to Run a Business from Home in Calgary

Calgary is undoubtedly one of the best and most supportive cities for aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners. Given the massive contribution of small and medium businesses to its economy, the city offers low tax rates and favorable incentives like loans and grants to support business growth.

Now that remote work is growing due to the pandemic, you might be thinking of starting and running your business from home. Fortunately, you should have no problem doing this in Calgary. However, there will be slight differences in the legal requirements needed to start your business. If you are not familiar with these, it will be best to contact Calgary business lawyers to help you out.

Pre-Registration Requirements
Before registering your business, you must draft a business plan, decide on the structure, find a location, and choose a name. If this is your first company, consider hiring Calgary business lawyers to help you out. They can educate you on what specific regulations will apply to your business so you know what to expect as you move forward.

Once you have your documents and details ready, you can proceed to registration. Regardless of where your business operates, you need to register it with the local government, get a business identification number (BID), and acquire land use approval for your location.

Business License
While not all businesses require a license, most do—even home-based businesses. If you are unsure whether your company needs one, you can visit the Calgary business registration site to find a list of applicable categories. Alternatively, you can input your business location and industry on the Alberta BizPal website to determine the necessary permits and licenses.

However, before you rush into your license application, you should research licensing fees and costs associated with other potential requirements. For example, some businesses need to be inspected and reviewed before they are granted a license.

Business Permit
Again, you still need to secure a permit to run your operations from home in Calgary. The specific type will depend on the nature of your business, but both permit classes require that you live in the home associated with your business.

Home Occupation – Class 1
Home occupation – class 1 permits are for home-based businesses with little to no impact on the surroundings. In other words, you are not operating in any building, nor are you using outside storage near the house. Your business should also not be visible outside or cause disturbances detectable from outdoors.

Additionally, employees and partners are not allowed to work from home unless they live there, and you cannot advertise your address to customers.

Home Occupation – Class 2
On the other hand, home occupation – class 2 permits are applicable for home-based businesses that may impact the surroundings. Generally, most of the conditions from class 1 permits still hold. However, the main difference is that you can use an accessory building or garage for the business. Also, a maximum of one employee or partner can work from home even if they do not live there.

Overall, it can be tricky to navigate the legal steps involved in setting up a business in Calgary—more so if you plan to operate it from home. Thus, if you have no knowledge of the local business regulations, it will be critical to find Calgary business lawyers to guide you through the process and stay compliant with the laws.

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