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Health Professional Corporation

If you are a self-employed nurse in independent practice, you have options for incorporating your own business. These include incorporating with the Ontario or federal government. As a nurse, you also have the option of setting up a Health Professional Corporation with CNO.

Regardless of which option you choose, we recommend you discuss your situation with an accountant or lawyer to determine the best choice for you.

CNO option: Health Professional Corporation

As a nurse, you have the option of setting up a Health Professional Corporation with CNO. It is not a requirement, but if you intend to set up a Health Professional Corporation you will need to be incorporated with the Ontario government.

The following FAQs help you understand the process of applying for a Health Professional Corporation through CNO. They don’t apply if you intend to incorporate your business only with the Ontario government.

Frequently Asked Questions

If I incorporate my business with the Ontario government, do I also have to set up a Health Professional Corporation with CNO?

No, you are not required to also set up a Health Professional Corporation with CNO, this is simply an option. We recommend you discuss your situation with an accountant or lawyer to determine the best choice for you.

I have decided to incorporate my business. Do I need to register my business as a sole proprietorship? 

We cannot provide you with advice about registering a business as a sole proprietorship. We recommend you discuss your situation with an accountant or lawyer to determine the best choice for you. 

What are the benefits of a CNO Health Professional Corporation? 

The benefit is you receive a Certificate of Authorization issued by CNO. This certificate confirms registration of your Health Professional Corporation. 

You still remain a registered nurse with CNO and therefore must meet all requirements of your practicing class: 

  • renew annually
  • uphold CNO’s practice standards and guidelines
  • complete your annual Quality Assurance requirements
  • comply with the reporting requirements
  • hold Professional Liability Protection (PLP) 

How do I set up a Health Professional Corporation?

  1. Confirm the name of your corporation with CNO to make sure it meets our naming requirements. For more information, read “Are there restrictions on health professional corporations?
  2. Apply for and obtain incorporation from the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services. You do this by filing your articles of incorporation with the Ministry and submitting any fees and documents they require.
  3. Apply to CNO for a Certificate of Authorization, submitting a copy of a corporation profile report, issued by the Ministry (or a service provider under contract to the Ministry). The report must be dated within the 30 days before you submit your application to CNO.

How do I apply for a Certificate of Authorization?

Fill out the Certificate of Authorization application form and submit it to CNO. 

Is there a fee for registering my Health Professional Corporation?

Yes. Please see our Fees page for related costs. 

Are there restrictions on Health Professional Corporations?

 Yes, provincial legislation imposes a number of restrictions, including:

  • only nurses registered with CNO can be shareholders in the corporation
  • the corporation’s officers and directors must be shareholders
  • the corporation’s name must include:
    • the last name of one or more shareholder(s), as listed on the CNO public Register, called Find a Nurse. You can include first names or initials if you want
    • the words “Nursing” and “Professional Corporation” or “Société Professionnelle”
  • the name of the corporation cannot be a numbered company. For example, 1234567 Ontario Inc. For example, the final name could be Jones, Smith & Partners Nursing Professional Corporation
  • the corporation can only practice nursing care or ancillary services. For example, health care or foot care
  • the corporation is subject to CNO regulatory processes

What is my professional responsibility and accountability for inappropriate activities of the professional corporation?

The corporation’s shareholders are responsible for upholding CNO standards of practice; to practice nursing according to CNO’s Independent Practice practice guideline, especially in relation to business advertising. They also remain accountable to CNO for their professional conduct. 

Is information about my corporation made public?

Yes. The name and address of your corporation, the names of all shareholders and any revocations of the corporation’s Certificate of Authorization are posted on CNO’s public Register, Find a Nurse

Can someone issue a complaint against a corporation or an individual within the corporation?

Yes. Anyone can make a complaint against a nurse or a corporation; CNO investigates all complaints. Consumers can also contact the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services for concerns about a corporation’s business practices. 

How do I maintain a Certificate of Authorization?

You must renew your Certificate of Authorization each year, in addition to paying an annual renewal fee. If the shareholders change, you must inform CNO within 10 days.

Page last reviewed July 01, 2023