Thousands of Filipinos turned their hobbies into income-generating projects during the pandemic to cope with hard times, prompting many to consider leaving formal work setups in favor of opening a business. Before you can start, you need to register a business name with the Department of Trade and Industry.
There are several requirements to actually open and operate a business in the Philippines, including filing taxes and issuing receipts to customers. Check out our guide on registration with the Bureau of Internal Revenue.
Here’s how to register your business name with DTI:
Figure out your Business Name
According to DTI, the Business Name “shall refer to ANY name that is different from THE TRUE NAME OF AN INDIVIDUAL WHICH IS USED OR SIGNED in connection with her/his business on any written or printed receipts.”
Any document used in relation to your business, be it evidence of agreement, transactions, receipts, or even signs and billboards, must be in line with your BN
If your name is Juan Dela Cruz and you want your business name to be JDC Milk Tea, you need to register that Business Name or BN with the DTI to conduct operations.
Got ideas? Check its availability on the DTI website. Business names must fall within DTI terms.
Getting green on all fields means your proposed BN passed DTI standards.
Fill out the form
If your preferred BN is available, you can proceed with the Business Name Registration System (BNRS). It will ask for personal details such as your name, birthdate, citizenship, and more.
You will also be asked to submit proof of identity. The following are accepted:
- SSS ID
- GSIS ID
- Voter’s ID
- PRC license
- Driver’s license
- Application form
Take a screenshot of the reference code, as you will use this for future BNRS transactions.
Pay the fee
Follow the instructions after online registration. You can settle the fee within seven days from the application date. Payments can be made via GCash, PayMaya, or credit or debit cards.
Here are the corresponding registration fees based on scope:
- Barangay - P200
- City/Municipality - P500
- Regional - P1,000
- National - P2,000
Business names registered at the barangay level can be used exclusively within the barangay. If you’re looking to use the name exclusively nationwide, you have to pay the national fee.
An additional documentary stamp tax of P30 will be added on top of the registration fee.
Download your certificate
Once your payment has been confirmed, your BN will be officially registered with the DTI. Go to the ‘Transaction Inquiry’ tab on the website and input the reference code from earlier to check the status of your registration.
Until when is the business name certificate valid?
According to DTI, certificates are valid for 5 from the date of registration.
If you want to keep using the business name, a renewal must be filed within six (6) months after the expiration of the five (5) year effectivity of the Business Name Registration.
So let’s say your certificate expires on May 31, 2025. If you renew on July 1, 2025, you only hae to pay the renewal fee as it’s within the three month period after expiry.
If you renew on Sept. 31, 2025, you have to pay the P100 surcharge fee on top of the renewal fee.
If your business name certificate expires but you want to keep using the name, you have to re-register the name and start from step one.