Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Notice Number
Issue Date

Beneficial Ownership Survey

The following notice does not apply to inshore licence holders subject to the inshore regulations outlined in the Atlantic Fishery Regulations, Part III, nor does it apply to communal-commercial licence holders that do not hold any other classification of commercial licence.

Beginning January 31, 2022, a short online survey will be open for licence holders and vessel owners to complete to help Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) gather information about who is benefitting from having access to commercial fishing across Canada.

The Beneficial Ownership Survey is mandatory for all:

  • party-based licence holders in Pacific Region
  • contact vessel owners for vessels that have been issued vessel-based licences in Pacific Region
  • offshore, mid-shore, exempted fleet, and inshore Elver licence holders in Atlantic Canada, Quebec and Arctic Region

In Pacific Region, if an individual or enterprise:

  1. holds one or more party-based licences and
  2. is a contact vessel owners for one or more vessels that have been issued a vessel-based licence, they must fill in both survey formats

Is the contact vessel owner for more than one vessel that has been issued a licence, they may need to fill out the vessel-based survey more than once is those vessels have different corporate structures.

Note that communal-commercial licence holders issued under the Aboriginal Communal Fishing Licences Regulations (ACFLR) are exempt from the Survey, unless they also hold on the West coast a party-based licence or own vessels that have been issued vessel-based licences or on the East coast a mid-shore, offshore or exempted fleet licence. Atlantic inshore licence holders subject to inshore regulation (Atlantic Fishery Regulations, Part III)  are also exempt from the Survey.

The Survey will be quite simple for most licence holders and contact vessel owners to complete because they will only have a few questions to answer. Larger, multi-tiered corporations may need more time to collect the information required to complete the section designed for complex organizations.

More information about the Survey, as well as visual fact sheets to show individuals how to complete it, may be found on our website at Beneficial Ownership Survey.  A link to the Survey itself will be published on the website at launch.

While the Survey will be available until March 31, 2022, we encourage you to complete it as soon as possible. You should also be aware that failure to provide required information through the Survey constitutes a prosecutable offence under section 78 of the Fisheries Act.

For information, contact:

Judy Hillier
A/Team Lead, Regional Licencing Services St. John's, NL
Telephone (709) 884-9357