Register an Enterprise
In Québec, the majority of enterprises must, upon their creation, register with the Registraire des enterprises by filing a declaration of registration. The purpose of registration is to collect, in the enterprise register, information pertaining to enterprises and persons doing business in Québec. Such information is essential for individuals, business partners and government agencies that have dealings with these enterprises. At the time of registration, the Registraire des entreprises assigns a Québec enterprise number (NEQ) to the enterprise. The enterprise uses its NEQ to identify itself with the Registraire des entreprises, as well as other government agencies.
Who must file a declaration of registration?
- Legal persons constituted in Québec further to their articles being deposited in the enterprise register do not have to file a declaration of registration because they are automatically registered by the Registraire des entreprises at the time of their constitution.
However, any company that was governed by Part I of the Companies Act or constituted under the Mining Companies Act and that was dissolved either voluntarily or by operation of law, must complete form RE-703, Demande de reconstitution (see English courtesy translation RE-703-T).
The following persons must file a declaration of registration:
- Natural persons who operate a sole proprietorship in Québec, under a name that does not include their first and last names
- Natural persons who operate a tobacco retail outlet or a tanning salon, regardless of whether they operate the enterprise under a name that includes their first and last names
- Legal persons not constituted in Québec if they maintain their domicile in Québec, carry on an activity in Québec (including the operation of an enterprise) or possess an immovable real right in Québec other than a priority or a hypothec
- Legal persons constituted under a law other than a Québec law if they maintain their domicile in Québec, carry on an activity in Québec (including the operation of an enterprise) or possess an immovable real right in Québec other than a priority or a hypothec
- Legal persons established for a private interest that are not constituted in Québec and that result from an amalgamation, other than a short-form amalgamation within the meaning of the Business Corporations Act
- Legal persons constituted in Québec before 1994 that are not registered for the enterprise register
Enterprises that have taken one of the following legal forms must also file a declaration of registration:
- General and limited partnerships constituted in Québec
- A partnership not constituted in Québec that carries on an activity in Québec (including the operation of an enterprise) or has an interest in real property other than a priority or a hypothec.
- Partnerships not constituted in Québec that carry on an activity in Québec (including the operation of an enterprise) or that possess an immovable real right in Québec other than a priority or a hypothec
- Syndicates of co-ownership
- Trusts operating a commercial enterprise in Québec and that are not administered by a registered trustee
If you wish to register an enterprise constituted under a law other than a law of Québec, you must make sure that the following conditions are met:
- The enterprise's information has already been published in another jurisdiction's register.
- The information in the declaration of registration, such as the name of the enterprise, its domicile address and date of constitution, must be the same as the information declared in the other jurisdiction.
- The enterprise has not been dissolved.
The Registraire des entreprises reserves the right to refuse an enterprise's registration if any of these conditions are not met.
An Activity in Québec
An enterprise carries on an activity or operates an enterprise in Québec in one or more of the following situations:
- It possesses an address in Québec.
- It or its representative possesses an establishment or post office box in Québec.
- It or its representative has a telephone line in Québec.
- It or its representative carries on an activity in Québec for the purpose of profit.
Registering on a voluntary basis is possible for, among others, the following legal forms of enterprises:
- a natural person who operates a sole proprietorship under a name including the person’s first and last names
- legal persons established in the public interest, such as public bodies and municipalities
- joint ventures (undeclared partnerships)
- associations and other groups of persons
The advantage to registering voluntarily is that it makes public an enterprise's existence as well as certain information concerning it. Once registered, the enterprise has the same obligations as an enterprise that is required to register.
How to register an enterprise
The Québec government has developed the integrated Démarrer une entreprise service (available in French only) to take you through the steps to carry out with various government departments and agencies in the process of starting a business and to track the status of your applications.
We recommend that you use this service if you are starting an enterprise and you have not undertaken any steps with any government department or agency. Enterprises that cannot use the service will still obtain the list of their obligations with various government departments and agencies based on their legal form. To access the service, click the Démarrer une entreprise button at the right side of this page.
To register an enterprise, the Registraire des entreprises offers the following online services:
- Our online services are not offered to every type of enterprise. Certain types of enterprises must therefore use the fillable (dynamic) PDF forms or the paper forms provided by our client services. Go to the Forms section or contact us to obtain copies of forms. Our contact information is provided on the Contact Us page.
Fees and terms of payment
The fees applicable to a declaration of registration, further to an application for registration, are given in form RE-101, Tarifs et modalités de paiement (see English courtesy translation RE-101-T).
Legal obligations of the enterprise
Once registered, an enterprise will have to fulfil annual legal obligations. For more information, click Legal Obligations Stemming from Registration.
Client services of the Registraire des entreprises are provided by Entreprises Québec at its offices in Montréal or Québec, as well as by email or telephone. Contact information is provided on the Contact Us page.
Client Services staff can help you understand, in particular, the process for registering an enterprise and the application of the rules of law in general. However, they cannot interpret the rules to adapt them to a specific case or respond to a specific situation. For such help, consult a legal adviser.