Obtaining a Business Permit or Mayor’s Permit is just one of the steps that you have to go through in order to have your business completely registered. A Mayor’s Permit is a prerequisite in securing a Tax Identification Number (TIN) and therefore is a requirement of the Philippine Law before anyone is able to operate a business in the country.
Different Municipalities or Local Government Units may have different processes and requirements when it comes to providing business permits. It’s best to first inquire and research about your municipality’s (or city’s) conditions to be able to fully prepare. You are lucky enough if your business is located in any of the following areas since they have their website available with the complete procedure and requirements on how to get a Mayor’s permit:
- Bacolod City
- Baguio City
- Caloocan City
- Cebu City
- Davao City
- Iloilo City
- Manila City
- Makati City
- Mandaluyong City
- Muntinlupa City
- Pasay City
- Pasig City
- Puerto Princesa City
- Quezon City
- San Juan City
- Tacloban City
Business Permit Requirements in the Philippines
For the locations that are not listed above, you may use this article as a guideline so you can still process your permit. The most common and basic business permit requirements in the Philippines include:
- Barangay Clearance. You can get a Barangay Clearance from the local Barangay where your business is located. You would be asked to present a photocopy of your SEC/DTI/CDC Registration and a contract of lease or TCT as well as pay a minimal Barangay Clearance Fee to be able to get this.
- Certificate of Registration. For sole proprietors, present your DTI Business Name Certificate, while a Certificate of SEC Registration shall be presented by corporations and/or partnerships. There are times when you may also be asked for Articles of Incorporation or Articles of Partnership so have these documents ready too just in case.
- Contract of Lease if you are leasing your business’ area, however, if you own the place, a copy of the Transfer Certificate of Title (TCT) or Tax Declaration is what you would provide.
- Certificate of Occupancy. A sketch or pictures of your business’ location and Fire Inspection Certificate will be required to get a certificate of occupancy.
- Community Tax Certificate or CEDULA. This can be easily obtained at the City Treasurer’s Office in your city hall.
- Fire Safety Inspection Certificate or Fire Permit. To have this processed, you will be asked for a few documents such as Building plans, Building permits, Barangay Business Clearance, Fire insurance coverage, and recommendations from fire safety inspectors.
- Building Permit and Electrical Inspection Certificate. There are a lot of papers and documents required in order to acquire this permit and certificate. Make sure to have the following prepared: complete and detailed building plan, lot plan, homeowners’ clearances (if applicable), barangay clearance, fire safety requirements, Contract of Lease and authorization of owner if renting or Land title, tax declaration, or tax receipt if owned, contractor’s business permit, a sketch of the office location, old building permit (if applicable), bill of materials, specifications, and structural computation.
- Locational Clearance. Locational clearances are usually released within 3 days but may be extended for up to 5 days if an inspection is considered necessary. You can get this at the Zoning Office of your city hall by simply asking for the application form and submitting the following requirements: A notarized Contract of Lease, Certificate of Occupancy (complete with the Building Name and Unit number if applicable), Sketch or pictures of your business’ location, Building Permit, Authorization from the owner (if you are renting), Certification of No Renovation, and Declaration of Real Property Tax.
- Sanitary Permit. Food and Non-food business companies are required to secure a sanitary permit to make sure they follow the standards of the Sanitary Code of the Philippines. You would usually be asked to provide a Chest X-Ray and 1×1 picture from each employee, payment of sanitary permit and sanitary inspection fees, medical certificate or Health Card issued by the City Health Officer or an authorized representative so you can get a sanitary permit.
Other documents necessary depending on the nature of your business:
- Public Liability Insurance – for restaurants, malls, cinemas, etc.
- National Grains Authority License – for dealerships involving rice, corn, & wheat.
- Bureau of Food and Drug Administration Permit – for drugstores, bakeries, etc.
- Accreditation by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) – for auto repair shops, electronics, radios, and other electrical equipment services.
- Real Estate Broker’s License (from DTI) – for real estate brokerage firms
- Pest Control License – for Pest Control Services
- LTO Franchising and Regulatory Board Permit – for services involving transportation
- Energy Regulatory Board (ERB) – for LPG dealerships
After all the processes you have to go through in getting your Business Permit for the first time, keep in mind that this permit must also be renewed yearly, specifically, in January. Even though renewing such is an easier process than obtaining this permit for the first time, processing its renewal on time is still very important and being unable to renew it will serve as an offense.
Now, as you have probably figured out, too many papers and documents are involved in processing a business or mayor’s permit that it can get overwhelming and time-consuming. Concerns like this are always best processed by experienced lawyers to save you a great amount of time and effort. Imagine all the days you would have to go back and to different government agencies just to fulfill a requirement – those days could actually be spent on growing your business.
So, if you are looking for legal experts to acquire a business permit for you, you may consider Yap, Kung, Ching, and Associates Law Office where you are assured to receive an expert and top-notch legal service for different legal matters, including business registrations. Their office is located in BGC and is open from Mondays through Fridays at 10:00 in the morning until 5:00 pm and can be contacted through +632 8251-3404 and +632 8716-3392.
Are you a foreigner who wants to start a business in the Philippines? You may want to read this article titled “Market Entry in Manila, Philippines: What Foreign Investors Need to Know?” to learn more.