#BUSINESS101: Your complete guide to registering your business in the Philippines

So you’ve decided to put up your own business. It requires a lot of effort from writing a business plan, to choosing a corporate structure and gaining from it. However, there’s one final step that must not be missed by any entrepreneur—the business registration.

It’s easy to start a business regardless whether it’s a small, medium or large enterprise for as long as you have the financial means (and assets) to support the experience. But before you get deeper in your new venture, you must comply with certain legalities in the country prior to opening your business.

Here is our complete guide to registering your business:

  • Registering your business name. The branding of your company begins with your business name. In order to be original to the market, you have to secure your name of choice so you’re ensured that you own the rights to use and operate your business under that name.
    • Sole proprietorship. If you’re a sole proprietorship, registrations go through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI). Most small and medium firms fall under this type of business. In July 2015, DTI made adjustments to ease the process by launching DTI’s e-Business Name Registration System (e-BNRS). So, the next step is choosing your business scope, whether it be regional, national, city and barangay. Once done, pay your fee depending on your scope to get your Certificate of Registration. You must provide the following prior to the registration:
      • Any valid ID

      • Barangay fee (P200.00)

      • City/Municipality fee (P500.00)

      • Regional fee (P1,000.00)

      • National fee (P2,000.00)

    • Partnership and corporation. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) handles all partnership and corporation ventures. Like DTI’s e-Business Name Registration System, you may also reserve your business name online on the SEC website. Note: Applications must go through the SEC and Company Registration and Monitoring Department (CRMD) for approval before they give you a Certificate of Registration. Prepare, sign and notarize the following:
      • Cover sheet

      • Reservation payment confirmation

      • Articles of Incorporation

      • By Laws

      • Treasurer’s Affidavit

      • Joint affidavit of two incorporators undertaking to change name

  • Obtain business permits from LGUs (Local Government Units)
    • Barangay clearance. After securing your business name, you have to obtain business permits from LGUs so you can legally operate your business. Now, you need to secure a barangay clearance from the city where your business will be operated. See requirements below:
      • For Sole Proprietorship – DTI Business Name Certificate

      • For Partnerships or Corporation – SEC Certificate of Incorporation or Partnership

      • Contract of lease (if renting) or Land title (if you own the place)

      • Fee: P4,000.00 (approx.)

    • Mayor’s permit. Aside from your barangay, you also have to secure a mayor’s permit and comply with the requirements. In order to secure the permit, you have to pass the following:
      • Business certification

      • Barangay clearance permit

      • Land title

      • Authorization of owner with ID

      • Sketch of location

      • Occupancy permit

      • Locational clearance

      • Public liability clearance

      • Cedula

      • Fire permit

      • Sanitary permit

  • Process Certificate of Registration to BIR. When you’re done with mayor’s permit, you may now register your business with the Bureau of Internal Revenue to secure your business BIR Certificate of Registration. Moreover, prior to issuance of your certificate of registration, you will submit your mayor’s permit as proof that you have complied with all the requirements. Registering to BIR gives you the authority to operate your business legally. You may visit the official website of BIR for more tax information.
  • If you have employees, register them with government agencies. Corporations are obliged to register their employees onto government agencies such as SSS, PhilHealth, PAG-IBIG/HDMF, and BIR.

It really needs a lot of time and effort to be able to finally run your business. But, of course it will all be worth it once you see your business running and doing well.

If you have questions, you may visit the DTI for their step-by-step guidelines in registering your business in the Philippines.

Photo courtesy of Breather at StockSnap.io