Freelance for a US company from Canada Problem

So I’m a bit bummed, I just got off the phone to a new client in the US (big multinational) and was all lined up to do a project for them until HR pulled the plug because they’re not allowed to use freelancers in Canada because they don’t have a presence there.

Not heard of this before and I work with a bunch of a US companies.

Anyone else encountered this before ?
It was a WPP company and apparently it’s policy because they get in trouble with the government if they do.

loafer…You are likely being subjected to the Trump administration’s policy to hire American workers first.

In addition to increasing the prevailing wages of those with specialized skills (H1-B visa holders), the US government has made a policy shift to favor US workers over that of foreign workers. Although you appear hold a Canadian passport and are “American”, that is not “American” enough for Donald Trump.

Perhaps obtaining an H1-B visa is the way to go if you want to contract with USA corps?

Good luck…

Not a lawyer or an accountant [disclaimer mode]… but I would assume how your business is et up would make a difference. If you are contracting as what amounts as a “temp employee” I could see this being a potential (not unsurmountable) challenge. If you are set up like a business you hypothetically shouldn’t be interacting with HR at all, but with who ever manages vendors, typically procurement. I’m sure they purchase things from across boarders. The output of your work is essentially the purchase in these cases. I would assume it depends how your business files and the specifics of the legal entity.

I’ve never heard of this or experienced it…

I really don’t think you ever need a visa to freelance and the Trump nonsense has nothing to do with freelance work.

Sorry I don’t have any useful info. Maybe the potential client was just backing out and making an excuse?

Good thoughts. I had just assumed that its a contract/purchasing services type thing, but I guess if somehow you were looked as a contract employee that could be different…


Yo, I’m just registered here in Canada as a sole proprietor under my own name. I guess if I was setup as a corporation without using my name that may have been easier to get through but the cost involved isn’t worth it for me. I work with a whole bunch of US companies and this is the first time in 15 years I have ever had an issue. I’ve signed a couple of W8-BEN forms over the years so they don’t have to withhold income tax on my invoice but other than that it’s been fine.

It’s a real shame because I was really looking forward to working with them, I’ve followed them since I started out and always looked at this company as being one of the best :frowning:

Ogilvy Canada is WWP. They have a Toronto, Montreal, and Quebec offices.

Yeah, my wife used to work there. This particular company didn’t have a presence here even if WPP does via Ogilvy and it sounded like too much work to trying figure that out on there end.

ah well, all very strange, what can ya do

Ya, sounds more like someone didn’t want to fill out the right form or something?

Yeah, the HR guy didn’t sound like he really wanted to help out much… more than his jobs worth and all that.