The Apostille: Simpler Authentication for Documents To Be Used Abroad

HCCH

Bringing documents from one state to another and having their validity recognized has always been difficult. A foreign corporation that wants to establish a Philippine subsidiary has to go through several steps just to authenticate its articles of incorporation from abroad. But with the Philippines recently joining the Apostille Convention, things are bound to get easier.

The Convention

The Apostille Convention (formally known as the Hague Convention Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents) provides for the use of a security certificate called the “Apostille.” This simplifies the authentication process for public documents used across signatory countries. The Philippines officially became a member last September 12, 2018.

Drafted by the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH), the international treaty will take effect between the Philippines and other states party to it on May 14, 2019. This is pending changes to be made by the Supreme Court to the Rules of Court with regards to foreign public documents. The Office of Consular Affairs under the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) will be responsible for implementing the treaty.

The Apostille

Previously, a public document must be authenticated both by the foreign ministry of its originating country and the foreign ministry of the country where it is to be used. This process is usually handled by embassies and consulates of the concerned states. In the Philippines, the certification issued by the DFA is popularly called the “red ribbon.”

Once the Convention becomes effective, public documents would no longer need to be consularized. An apostillized public document will immediately have legal effect in a foreign country where it is presented. Of course, the affixing of a red ribbon is still needed for states which are not members of the Convention.

The apostille is a standard form that can be placed or attached to the original document. It testifies that a document bears the signature of an authorized person, the capacity of the signatory, and an official stamp or seal. It does not, however, certify the content or purpose for which the document was issued.

Covered Documents

Public documents that can be apostillized according to the Convention are the following:

a) documents emanating from an authority or an official connected with the courts or tribunals of the State, including those emanating from a public prosecutor, a clerk of a court, or a process-server (“huissier de justice“)

b) administrative documents

c) notarial acts
       Note: This may include seemingly “private” documents such as contracts and wills

d) official certificates which are placed on documents signed by persons in their private capacity, such as official certificates recording the registration of a document or the fact that it was in existence on a certain date and official and notarial authentications of signatures.

Those that are not valid for apostillization include:

a) documents executed by diplomatic or consular agents;

b) administrative documents dealing directly with commercial or customs operations.

 

The apostille, once it is fully implemented in the Philippines, can boost trade and investment while making personal transactions easier. It will be useful for the millions of Filipinos working abroad as well as the large number of expatriates who have made (or are planning to make) the Philippines their second home.

How to Register Your Business in Makati City, Philippines

Makati City business registration

Makati City has long been the country’s leading business and financial hub, serving as home to 40 percent of the country’s top 1000 multinational and local corporations. The city boasts of a highly-developed transport and communications infrastructure, quality shopping centers, state-of-the-art hospitals, and premiere residential areas. All these advantages have made Makati the location of choice for new businesses.

We have previously covered the steps on registering your Philippine-based corporation with national- and municipal-level agencies. In this article, we will highlight the specific, up-to-date requirements and steps for business registration in Makati City.

Makati City Business Registration / Mayors’ Permit

BASIC REQUIREMENTS:

1) Locational Clearance for Business

– to determine if the business activity you are applying for is allowed in the area

– will be issued by the Zoning Administration Division after five (5) working days if an inspection is needed

2) Proof of Business Address

a. Contract of Lease (if the place of business is rented)

b. Transfer Certificate of Title / Tax Declaration / Real Property Tax Receipt (if the place of business is owned)

3) Proof of Business Name and Activity / Line of Business

a. Business Name Certificate from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) (if sole proprietorship)

b. Articles of Incorporation or Partnership from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) (if corporation
or partnership)

4) Barangay Clearance for Business

5) Comprehensive General Liability Insurance (CGLI)

– protects an enterprise from liability claims arising in the course of business

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS BASED ON NATURE OF BUSINESS BEING APPLIED:

1) Residence Certificate A and B for Single Proprietorship, C and C1 for Corporation

2) Contractor’s License issued by the Philippine Contractors Accreditation Board (PCAB) for General/Specialty
Engineering Contractors

3) National Food Authority (NFA) License for Dealers of Rice/Corn and Wheat

4) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Certification for Bakeries and Drugstores

5) Authority from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) for Banking Institutions

6) Accreditation Certificate issued by DTI for Auto Repair Shop, Electronics, Radio, and other Electrical Equipment Businesses

7) Customs Broker’s Accreditation granted by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) for Customs Brokerage Businesses

8) Real Estate Broker’s License issued by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) for Real Estate Brokers

9) License issued by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) for Local Manpower/Recruitment Agencies

10) License issued by the Philippine Overseas and Employment Agency (POEA) for Manning and Crewing Services

11) Pest Control License issued by Fertilizers and Pesticide Authority for Pest Control Services

12) License issued by the Optimal Media Board (OMB) for Video Rental Services

13) Occupancy Permit for Real Estate Lessors

14) License to Operate from the Philippine National Police (PNP) for Private Security Agencies

15) Clearance issued by the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources (DENR) for Mining Companies

16) Franchise granted by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) for Rent-A-Car and Transportation Services

17) License to Own and Possess Firearms issued by PNP

18) Accreditation issued by the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) for Messengerial or Courier Services

19) License issued by the Department of Energy (DOE) for Dealers of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG)

20) License issued by the National Telecommunication Commission (NTC) for Telecommunications Companies

21) Certificate of Accreditation issued by Philippine Shippers’ Bureau for Seafreight Forwarders

22) Accreditation issued by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) for Training Centers

23) Accreditation Certificate issued by the Department of Education (DepEd) for Educational Institutions

24) Certificate of Authority to Operate issued by SEC for Financial Lending Institutions

3EASY STEPS FOR GETTING YOUR MAYOR’S / BUSINESS PERMIT

   STEP 1:

   Location: Business Permits Office (BPO), Ground Floor, New Makati City Hall Building II

   Estimated Time Frame: 30 minutes

a. Secure application form from receiving or processing clerks. Be informed of the requirements and processes.

         Note: If your business is considered “Subject for Inspection,” you will have to proceed to the Inspection Division.

b. Have the BPO check your requirements and accept your application. Officials will evaluate and assess taxes, fees, and charges. The BPO Chief will then sign the billing statement and application form to indicate approval.

   STEP 2:

   Location: Business Tax Division / Treasury Department, Ground Floor, New Makati City Hall Building II

   Estimated Time Frame: 5 minutes

a. With your approved application form and billing statement at hand, pay the corresponding fees and tax at designated windows.

   STEP 3:

   Location: BPO

   Estimated Time Frame: 15 minutes

a. Claim your Business Permit, Sanitary Permit, and Fire Safety Inspection Notice.

Note: Inspections will be conducted after release of Business Permit by the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Health Department, and Engineering Office.

TOTAL TIME: 50 minutes

 

Want to save even more time? Let the experts at DAYANAN Business Consultancy do the work for you! We’ll be happy to guide you through the ins and outs of the Philippine business registration process!

 

Source: Makati City BPO

Makati City skyline image taken from www.makati.gov.ph