Change of owners, partners or directors

On this page, you will find information on the following:

Whenever one of the owners, partners or directors of your business changes, it is important that you call us
at 1-800-959-5525.

Depending on the structure of your business, a change of owner could trigger a legal name change or require the registration of a new business number and new program accounts.

Sole proprietorship

If you sell or stop operating your business, you must close your business number (BN) and all your Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) program accounts.

If you sell your business, the new owner will have to get a new BN and new program accounts for the business. For more information, go to Business number registration.

Partnership

If the structure of your partnership changes and a partner leaves or one is added, call us at 1-800-959-5525.

A change of partners will have a different impact on your business depending on your partnership agreement and whether or not your business was registered using the legal names of each partner or the provincially registered partnership operating name.

In some cases, if the partners change, the business is considered a new legal entity and requires a new business number and new Canada Revenue Agency program accounts.

Corporation

If the structure of your corporation changes and a director leaves or one is added, call us at 1-800-959-5525. Before you call the Canada Revenue Agency, owner information for a corporation must be validated with the federal or provincial registry.

It is important that we have the correct director name and social insurance number on file because if a corporation (including for-profit or non-profit corporations) fails to deduct, withhold, remit, or pay amounts held in trust for the Receiver General for Canada, the directors of the corporation at the time of failure may be held personally liable along with the corporation to pay the amount owed. This amount includes penalties and interest.

However, if the directors take action to ensure the corporation makes the necessary deductions or remittances, we will not hold them personally responsible.

GST/HST

We ask for the name and social insurance number of at least one of the owners, directors or partners, as well as the business activity of the business when registering any new GST/HST program account.

Payroll deductions

If you are a successor employer who has acquired all or part of a business and who has immediately succeeded the former (predecessor) employer as the new employer of employees, you may, under certain circumstances, take into consideration the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) or Quebec Pension Plan (QPP), employment insurance (EI), and Provincial Parental Insurance Plan (PPIP) deductions already withheld by the previous employer and continue withholding and remitting those deductions as if there were no change in employer. If employees have already paid the maximum deductions, take no further deductions for the year.

If the situation just described does not apply, you must continue to deduct CPP or QPP, EI, and PPIP. You cannot take into consideration any deductions taken by the previous employer. 

For more information, go to Changes to your business entity in Guide T4001, Employers' Guide – Payroll Deductions and Remittances.

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