There are many steps involved in opening a salon or spa, and the Cosmetology Association of Nova Scotia is here to help prepare members to achieve business success. The secret is getting started… but where do you start?
Cosmetology business permits are compulsory by law and must be issued by the Cosmetology Association of Nova Scotia to every salon and spa (commercial, home-based or mobile). The Association must be in receipt of application forms, space plan and prescribed fees prior to issuing a salon or spa permit. Permits must be renewed no later than December 31st of each calendar year. Please read the following information below carefully to properly apply for and register your salon or spa with the Association.
There may be other permits required, please view Access Nova Scotia for further requirements.
All employees providing services to the public for fee, gain, or expectation of reward or remuneration must hold a valid and current licence in their scope of practice. Licences and permits must be displayed in a location visible to the public at all times. Salon and spas must also be in compliance with Occupational Health and Safety standards, which can be viewed at www.novascotia.ca/lae/healthandsafety/.
*Students cannot apply for a permit to operate until they have completed the Provincial Exam and become fully licensed with the Cosmetology Association of Nova Scotia.
The Association may ask for proof that a business owner has fulfilled all other requirements to operate a cosmetology establishment before application approval, such as compliance with the following listed below:
- Registry of Joint Stock Companies - Individuals or partners using only their personal names without a descriptive element or attachment are not required to register with the Registry of Joint Stock Companies. Please click here for more information.
- Municipal Zoning requirements - Zoning is the process of dividing land in a municipality into zones (e.g. residential, industrial) in which certain land uses are permitted or prohibited. Please click here for more information on zoning in your area.
- Development Permit - A development permit is official approval issued by the local government agency that allows you or your contractor to proceed with a construction or remodeling project on your property. It is intended to ensure that the project plans to comply with local standards for land use, zoning, and construction.
- Revenue Canada - Are you a chair/room renter (self-employed) or an employee? Visit Canada Revenue Agency for further information.
Business Registration Forms:
Listed below are the registration forms necessary to apply for a cosmetology establishment permit. Please click on the appropriate link to access the form you require.
Commercial Registration Forms
In-home Registration Forms
Mobile Registration Forms
Chair/Room Rental Registration Forms
*All documentation and fee(s) must be received in order to release a permit to operate.
Effective as of October 15, 2018
The following additions are being added to the Association`s Policies and Procedures and the Salon and Spa Compliance Handbook:
All salon and spas (including in-home salons and spas) opened on or after October 15, 2018, must:
- provide and maintain a separate entrance to the salon/spa (which does not require entry into or visibility of living quarters).
- provide and maintain an open/closed sign to be displayed on the outside (or in a window visible to the public) of the premises.
- post a price list and salon/spa operating hours, visible to the public.
- provide and maintain separate washroom facilities for exclusive use by the public which does not require entry into personal living quarters.
- provide and maintain a sink with running hot and cold water in the room or in an adjacent room where cosmetology services are being offered.
- provide proof of insurance to the Association.
- be in compliance with all Provincial and Municipal laws, including confirmation of the Municipality`s approval (i.e: zoning permit, building permit if applicable, and the Registry of Joint Stock).
- be separate from personal living quarters.
- provide and maintain adequate lighting and ventilation.
- adhere to all other Acts and By-Law requirements.
- adhere to the Association`s inspection checklist requirements.
$250 + HST Business Registration Fee: This one-time Salon/Spa Application Registration Fee.
Please note: payment of fees will not be accepted without relevant documentation.
Permit Fee: This fee is renewable on or before December 31st of each calendar year. The type of permit for which you apply depends on the number of Cosmetologists working at your salon:
1 Person = Apply for a Salon Licence (1) 70.00 +HST
Up to 5 = Apply for a Salon Licence (2-5) 80.00+HST
Up to 10 = Apply for a Salon Licence (6-10) 115.00 +HST
Over 11 = Apply for a Salon Licence (11+) 140.00 +HST
Business registration forms can be submitted by fax (902) 468-7147, email firstname.lastname@example.org or walk-in.
Once the business registration process is completed, you will be issued a Temporary Permit pending inspection. The goal of coordinating a first- time inspection between the Association and a salon is to equip business owners with everything they will need to succeed and operate safely from the start. The Association is aware salon/spa hours may vary, please provide the Association with your current salon/spa hours to ensure a prompt inspection. Upon a successful inspection, the inspector will provide you with your valid permit to operate.
For more information regarding inspections, please refer to the Salon & Spa Compliance Handbook.
Approved by members at the AGM on September 22, 2019 (Permit Fee $70.00)
If you are a self-employed business owner renting space within a salon or spa, you are required to obtain a salon permit, as is required by all salon/spa owners to ensure compliance with Canada Revenue Agency rules and regulations.
The following is a requirement of CANADA REVENUE AGENCY:
Are you self employed? A chair/room renter is self-employed if any of the following situations applies (including but not limited to):
1. Your business is known and registered under another business name (or your own personal name) for tax purposes.
2. You advertise (on Social Media, traditional Media, business cards, pamphlets, flyers, etc.) under a different name other than the salon or spa name.
2. You schedule your own client appointments in a separate appointment book from that of the salon or spa.
4. You handle all monetary transactions directly (no money flows through the salon or spa).
5. You purchase all your own supplies for services provided.
6. You schedule your own hours and come and go as you wish.
Note: A salon/spa owner is responsible for insurable earnings for employees, including those on chair/room rent. If the salon/spa owner does not know what the renter's income is, Employment Insurance is adjusted.
Please visit Canada Revenue Agency's website at https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/tax/businesses/topics/payroll/payroll-deductions-contributions/special-situations/barbers-hairdressers.html for more information, or contact CRA directly at 800-959-5525.
"If you do not know how much the worker earned and/or the expenses the worker incurred in generating revenue from their operation in the establishment during a pay period, the amount of insurable earnings is the lesser of:
- the number of days worked in the week multiplied by 1/390 of the maximum of the annual insurable earnings
- 1/78 of the maximum of the annual insurable earnings" ...
Chair/room renters are not employees of the salon/spa. Salons/spas and industry are suffering. Salon owners are complaining of loss of employees and income to their business due to chair/room rental locations increasing.
Low pricing is often offered by chair/room renters, leaving salons/spas in hardship (resulting in different pricing between salon service providers).
Chair/room renters are business owners and should comply (as other salon owners comply) with section 31 (1) of the Cosmetology Act.
Salon & Spa Relocation
Salon/Spa owners relocating their registered cosmetology establishment are required to contact the Association to obtain a valid permit to operate and complete Schedule A-2. Salon relocation is subject to a Salon/Spa Relocation Fee of $150 plus applicable taxes as outlined in Schedule B. Once the Association is in receipt of all forms and payment of fees applicable thereto, a Temporary Permit will be issued and an inspection of the salon/spa will be arranged. Upon a successful inspection, you will be provided with a valid permit to operate.
Individuals taking over ownership of an existing salon are required to complete Schedule C and Schedule A-2 along with providing proof of ownership. Documentation stating the old owner has relinquished ownership must accompany this application. Completed forms can be submitted by fax at (902) 468-7147, email email@example.com or at the Cosmetology Association office.
Salon & Spa Closure
Individuals no longer operating a cosmetology establishment are required to notify the Association in writing (email accepted) of such closure with a request that the corresponding account/membership with the Cosmetology Association be discontinued. Please click firstname.lastname@example.org to submit the request.
Please allow 4 - 6 weeks for processing of all applications.