Steps in Registering Your Corporation in the Philippines: A Brief Overview

Philippines Business RegistrationOnce you have decided that the Philippines is a good place for setting up business, it’s time to begin the process of registering your corporation.

Here are the steps to registering a corporation in the Philippines:

1. Register your company name with the Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) . This is the government agency under whose jurisdiction falls all corporations, associations, and partnerships established in the country.

SEC registration involves at least 5 steps, which begin with the online verification and reservation of the company’s proposed name, and ends with your claiming your SEC license/certificate in person at the SEC office.

2. Get clearance from the barangay hall. A barangay is a Filipino local government unit usually composed of several villages. Several barangays make up a municipality.

To get barangay clearance, go to the barangay hall of the area where you intend to put up your main office. Submit your SEC certificate, site map of your company’s intended location, your approved articles of incorporation and bylaws, and your application form. Then, pay the application fee, and receive your signed barangay certificate that very same day or next day.

3. Secure your municipal permit. Municipal permit application can be complex for two reasons: (1) municipalities vary widely in their requirements, and (2) before you can get your municipal permit, you will need to get supporting certificates from other government agencies outside the municipal hall, like the Bureau of Fire Protection, the municipal health center, etc.

Once you have secured all of your required certificates, bring them back to the municipal hall, pay the fees stated in your application form, then wait a week or two (or more) for your certificates to be ready.

4. Register with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). The BIR is the last stop in your business registration process. Armed with all the papers and certificates you have so far secured from the SEC, barangay hall, and municipal hall, plus all the other requirements you submitted to be able to secure those permits, go to the BIR revenue district office (RDO) in charge of the area where your business is located.

You may or may not need all the paper you bring with you. Like the municipal halls, RDOs can vary slightly in their requirements for registration.

At the RDO, fill out BIR forms 1903 (Application for Registration for Corporations) and 0605 (payment form for the registration fee).

Submit your application form and all required supporting documents, pay the registration fee and documentary stamps, and you’re done for the day. The BIR will tell you when you should call back to confirm whether your certificate of registration (COR) is ready.

Once your COR has been issued, you have 30 days to have your official receipts and sales invoices printed.

6. Register with the Social Security System (SSS), Home Development Mutual Fund (HDMF), Philippine Health Insurance Company (Philhealth), and the Philippine Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). Registration with the DOLE becomes mandatory when you have 5 or more employees in your payroll. On the other hand, companies with even just one employee are required to register as employer with the SSS, HDMF, and Philhealth, so that their employee/s may enjoy the benefits of these agencies.

At present, the Philippine government is revising SOPs and putting up infrastructure and to speed up and simplify the system of business registration in the country.

Frustration among registrants is usually caused by the lack of communication from the involved government offices. For instance, it is not uncommon for registrants to discover that the requirements for business permit that are published in a municipality’s website are not complete, and the registrant ends up having to go back and forth to complete the required documents. Many a registrant has also experienced falling in line at a certain window, following instructions indicated by a flowchart posted on the wall, only to find out half an hour later that the flowchart is inaccurate and they are in the wrong queue.

Dayanan Business Consultancy is well versed in the ins and outs of the Philippine business registration process. We’ll be happy to guide you in every step of your company registration in the Philippines. Call us now to learn more about our services.

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Philippines business consultant specializing in assisting companies setup their operations in the Philippines.

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