Applying for a Business Permit in the Philippines

  • Feb 26, 2020
  • By Miles Malferrari


So you’re looking to start a business. DIY-ing a business from scratch brings with it a great sense of fulfillment along with the harrowing fear of uncertainty. It’s both uplifting and mentally exhausting, so much so that the line between often gets blurred out. And while there is no definite formula for success, personal drive, ambition, and a lot of hard work can take you to heights you never would have thought you’d reach.

Now that you’ve got everything thoughtfully planned out, let me take you through the steps of acquiring a permit to kickstart your business.

Being in the Philippines, we know that it’s necessary to procure necessary legal papers to have your business registered no matter how big or small it is. Here’s what you need to get down:

Registering your business name with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)

What you need to do:

  1. Have two personally signed copies of a duly accomplished application form and at least one valid ID.

  2. Come up with three (3) possible names for your business

  3. Check for any existing names similar to yours on DTI’s website

  4. If it’s all good for the taking, fill-out the Business Name application form

  5. Submit your form to DTI’s office and pay all necessary fees to complete this step

  6. Wait for your Business Name Registration to be issued and don’t forget to keep the receipt

  7. If you’re from the NCR, this process normally takes place within 24 hours. Anywhere out the capital takes around 5 days, tops

Acquiring a Barangay Clearance

Things to prepare:

  • Your newly acquired Business Name Registration

  • Contract of Lease (applicable only if you’re renting commercial space) or Land Title and Tax Declaration (if your business is located in your own property)

  • Certificate of Homeowner’s Association (if your business is located in a subdivision)

  • Two valid IDs

Once you’ve collected all these, proceed to your barangay hall to fill out the application form located in the permit department. Submit your form along with the other requirements and wait for your assessment. After you’ve accomplished all necessary fees for this step, sit tight and wait for your Barangay Business Permit to be released. Again, don’t forget to keep the receipt!

Getting a Business Permit (also known as a Mayor’s Permit)

It’s time to head over to the municipal office and get yourself yet another application form. This time, it’s for the actual Business Permit.  

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Acquire a Certificate of Electrical Inspection in the Electrical Department

  2. Secure a Health and Sanitation Permit at the Sanitary Office

  3. Present any photos of your area of business to the Bureau of Fire and Protection (in some cases, they are required to inspect your business address)

  4. Acquire a Zoning Clearance at the office of the Municipal Planning and Development Coordinator

  5. Once you’re done with that, return to the Bureau of Fire Protection to claim your Fire Safety Permit

  6. Pay all necessary fees and claim your Business Permit and business plate within or after 3 days

Registering your business in the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)

You’re close to having your business legitimized! Just a few more steps and you’re golden.

  1. Head over to your Regional District Office

  2. If you applied for a Sole Proprietor Business, fill-out BIR Form 1901

  3. Make sure to have all the documents you’ve acquired at the ready, this also includes your NSO Certified Birth Certificate

  4. Pay Annual Registration Fee worth around P500

  5. Pay for your Documentary Stamp Tax and attend the taxpayer’s initial briefing

Once you’ve claimed your Certificate for Registration (BIR Form 2303), you are good to go! Remember, if you ever need clarification with any of the steps above, you could always go and ask for assistance from the office staff.

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