Canada regulatory requirements

Account applications

Due to Canadian regulatory requirements designed to protect consumers, you must answer questions on your past investing experience, your risk tolerance, and your financial situation to ensure that crypto investing is appropriate for you. 

Based on your answers, you'll either be able to access the full Coinbase platform in Canada (potentially subject to net purchase limits) or, if your answers suggest that you have limited crypto investing experience or risk tolerance, you may continue opening your account, but you will have a net purchase limit of $1000 in a rolling 12 month period.

Before you invest, do your research to understand the risks. Coinbase maintains a section of its website dedicated to helping people educate themselves about crypto: Coinbase Learn.

If your risk tolerance changes, you may go to your profile settings to ensure your profile is updated.

Purchase limits

Based on Canadian regulatory requirements, you may be subject to rolling 12-month limits that begin when you open your account. This varies by province or territory of residence.

Where these limits apply, the applicable limit depends on the asset in question and your answers to the questions we asked during onboarding. No limits apply to purchases of Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), or Litecoin (LTC). The table below summarizes the limits:

Purchase Limits

Province or Territory of residence

12-month limits on purchases of BTC, ETH, BCH, LTC

12-month limits on purchase of other assets

New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Yukon

None

$30,000

Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba and Quebec

None

None

Purchase limits reset over a 12-month rolling period. During the course of the 12 months, if you sell your crypto holdings, you will receive credit for the sale amount up to the annual limit (i.e. sales are netted against purchases). 

Example:

You are a retail investor with an annual purchase limit of $30,000 CAD.

  • You purchase 1,000 Solana (SOL) at an average cost of $15 for a total purchase of $15,000 (1000 x $15 = $15,000)

  • Your remaining purchase limit is $15,000 ($30,000 - $15,000 = $15,000)

  • During the rest of the 12-month period, if you sell 200 SOL at an average cost of $50 for total proceeds of $10,000 (200 x $50 = $10,000), your remaining limit will be increased to $25,000:

    • $30,000 (purchase limit) - $15,000 (purchase) + $10,000 (proceeds) = $25,000

If you are subject to a purchase limit, you can view your limit on web and mobile. To do so, select My Preferences, then Account Limits.

Loss notifications

Under Canadian regulations, Coinbase is required to notify you if the value of your crypto holdings incurs a certain level of loss. The threshold for this loss notification is determined by your responses on the mandatory risk assessment you completed during account setup.    

Loss calculation

A notification is sent once every 30 days if your portfolio has reached the determined loss threshold when compared with the value that your assets held when you acquired them or transferred them into your Coinbase account. Note that your portfolio value may change from the time you receive the notification and when you view your portfolio. 

Loss notifications vs. price alerts

Loss limit notifications are a regulatory requirement that inform you if the value of your personal crypto holdings incurs a certain level of loss. Price alerts let you know about the overall price movements for assets on your watchlist (whether or not you own them).

Note that price alerts are immediate and more frequent than your loss notifications, which are only sent once every 30 days. We recommend checking your portfolio regularly rather than relying on loss notifications.

Check out these tips for ways to minimize your losses in a falling market.