I incorporated my company several years ago and since then I've been filing both my provincial and federal annual returns (pay $20 and confirm info). According to many sources, having the federal registration in addition to provincial has advantages such as better name protection and better visibility for potential clients doing due diligence on my company.
Until now I thought everyone did it this way and pretty much "had to" do it this way - both federal and provincial. This year I was curious and I started looking up my clients' companies, not a single one is registered federally (and they are bigger companies than mine). Seems like I'm the odd one out and not only is federal filing not required, but it's also unusual. For that reason I am reconsidering my decision to register federally. It wastes my time, money and creates privacy issues (ex I do not want my name and address to be listed under directors).
I see there is an option to dissolve the corporation. Will that dissolve it only federally and keep my provincial status alone? Can I go back to active status if I need to for whatever reason? Did I get myself into some kind of one way street that I can't back out of? (back out of meaning operate same as my clients where their name never even shows up at all)
Or am I looking at this all wrong? Maybe all those other companies I am searching for are in fact registered but under some numbered company or some other level of indirection that makes them hard to find?
(Note: I don't have any employees at this time and don't need name protection across Canada, business structure is also very simple)