Incorporate an Alberta corporation

Learn how to incorporate your Alberta-based business.


A corporation is an independent legal entity that exists separate and apart from its owners (shareholders). Basically, the corporation acts as a ‘person.’

As a ‘person,’ a corporation can:

  • buy, sell and own assets, including land
  • make contracts
  • sue
  • be sued

You do not need to be a large business to register as a corporation. A small business with only one owner can register as a corporation.

If you need help deciding if a corporation is the best form of business, we highly recommend you get legal advice.


The service provider that processes your application will charge a government fee and a service fee.

See the Registry agent product catalogue.

How to apply

Step 1. Choose a name

An Alberta corporation name consists of 3 elements:

  • distinctive
  • descriptive
  • legal

‘ABC Building Supplies Ltd.’ is an example of a corporation name that contains all 3 elements.

Distinctive element

A distinctive element is a unique word or location that makes your corporation name different from others.

In the example above, ‘ABC’ is the distinctive element.

Descriptive element

A descriptive element describes what the corporation does or what the corporation is.

In the example above, ‘Building Supplies’ is the descriptive element.

Legal element

All Alberta corporations are required to have a legal element at the end of their name.

In the example above, ‘Ltd.’ is the legal element.

Accepted legal elements

The following legal elements are permitted by the Business Corporations Act:

  • Limited
  • Limitee
  • Ltee
  • Ltd.
  • Corp.
  • Corporation
  • Inc.
  • Incorporated
  • Incorporee
  • ULC
  • Unlimited Liability Corporation

The ‘Professional Corporation’ element can only be used for one of the following types of professions:

  • Chartered Professional Accountants
  • Chiropractor
  • Dentistry
  • Law
  • Medicine
  • Optometry

Your corporation can also use a ‘number’ name, such as ‘785843 Alberta Inc.’

  • the number portion of the name is assigned by Corporate Registry
  • ‘Alberta’ always forms the second part of the name

You may choose one of the standard legal elements above.

Step 2. Get an Alberta NUANS report

You need to get an Alberta NUANS report and review it to make sure there is no other corporation with an identical name or a name that is too similar to your proposed corporation name. Unlike business names, identically named corporations are not allowed.

Find a NUANS service provider.

The NUANS report reserves the proposed name for 90 days. The complete report, whether an original or fax copy, must be submitted with the incorporation details and must be less than 91 days old.

You do not need a NUANS report when the proposed name will be a 'number name' assigned by Corporate Registry (for example, 9999999 Alberta Ltd.).

If another corporation feels your corporation’s name is too similar to theirs, they can file an objection with the Registrar of Corporations. If the Registrar agrees with the objection, your corporation can be forced to change its name.

Step 3. Collect information needed for incorporation

Articles of Incorporation

Notice of English/French Name Equivalency (optional)

Fillable PDF forms do not open properly on some mobile devices and web browsers.

If you are having problems opening the form, contact PDF form technical support.

Step 4. Record your corporation’s address

The registered office needs to be a physical location in Alberta, so that the corporation can get legal documents delivered.

The records address, if not the same as the registered office, also needs to be physically located in Alberta.

You will need a mailing address in Alberta for the corporation if you do not have mail delivered to the registered office.

Notice of Address

Step 5. Elect a director

Elect or appoint at least one director for your corporation and record that information on the Notice of Directors.

Directors must be adults.

Notice of Directors

Step 6. Appoint an agent for service

An agent for service is an individual located in Alberta who can accept notices and documents in person or by mail on behalf of the corporation. The agent for service does not need to be a lawyer.

You will need to supply:

  • The name, firm name (if applicable), street address or legal land description, mailing address, email address and appointment date for the agent for service.
  • The agent must consent to their appointment.
  • You can also appoint an alternative agent for service.  The same details are needed.
  • Agents for service and alternative agents for service do not need to be part of the same firm and can be located at different addresses within Alberta.

Notice of Agent for Service/Change of Agent for Service for an Alberta or Extra-Provincial Corporation

Step 7. Submit your application package

You need to take your forms to a registry agent or authorized Alberta service provider. You will need to bring:

  • your incorporation information forms:
    • Articles of Incorporation
    • Notice of English/French Name Equivalency (optional)
    • Notice of Address
    • Notice of Directors
    • Notice of Agent for Service for an Alberta or Extra-Provincial Corporation
  • NUANS report
  • valid ID
  • fee payment

If your information meets requirements, the service provider will enter it into the Corporate Registry computer system and give you a certificate of incorporation. You will receive an email when your federal business number is issued.

You can also register your corporation in British Columbia, Manitoba or Saskatchewan if you plan on doing business there.



Connect with Corporate Registry:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-427-7013
Fax: 780-422-1091
Email: [email protected]