It’s one thing to start your business; it’s another to keep it going for the long term.

Every business owner sees it as a grueling but necessary step: the annual process of renewing your business permit. Yearly renewals legitimize your business operations in the eyes of the law, which in turn let people know they can trust your brand (you are definitely not some fly-by-night shop!).

The process of renewing your business permit (for now) takes one to two weeks to finish, if you can follow the steps below:

1) Put together the necessary documents.

You’ll need to get the following documents ready:

The list of requirements varies by location. “Each city or municipality in the Philippines has their respective list of documentary requirements,” explains Julie Ann Zuniga, Senior Tax Associate for G. Pagaspas Partners & Co., CPAs. “We suggest that you get one as reference.”

2) Visit your local city hall to submit requirements.

If you’ve completed the requirements, submit them, along with a filled-out application form, to the designated City Hall office that processes renewals. The process is completed once you pay for the renewal and get the receipt.

3) Mind the deadlines, or pay the fine.

Business permit renewals must be completed on the 20th of January every year; each LGU imposes different levels of fines or penalties for missing the renewal deadline.

4) Get ready to deal with red tape.

Efforts to further hasten the renewal process are ongoing. The recent passage of the Ease of Doing Business Law (RA 11032) requires all government agencies to finish simple transactions within three working days, speeding up the application and renewal process. In the next year or so, explains BIR Commissioner Caesar Dulay, “we will cut down on the documentary requirements.”

But as reforms are still pending, dig in for a considerable wait. “Processing of business permit renewals can be tedious and may take more than a few days,” explains Muriel Panganiban, Tax Supervisor at KPMG R.G. Manabat & Co. “Bring something to keep yourself busy, as the lines are surely long.”

Other Tips

Hire a professional service to help with your renewal.

Consider this alternative if you can’t set aside time to process your renewal in person.

“Me and my wife, who is also my business partner, decided to ask someone to secure all our paperwork from the city hall and BIR,” says Francis Funa, founder and managing partner of Pushpins, a consulting company focusing on geographic information systems (GIS).

It may seem daunting, but all that hard work is definitely worth it knowing you’ve extended your world-beating business venture for yet another year.

Speed up your business.

Renewing your permit may take a while, but that doesn’t mean you should expect the same from your internet connection. You can optimize your connectivity with a wide range of broadband packages, depending on your needs.

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