Nigeria has a huge population and given the enterprising nature that has come to be associated with its people, there are a great many businesses in its economy. There are great advantages to having your business registered in an economy like Nigeria’s which is majorly informal.
If you have a vocation or trade which you are trying to formalize, know that the first part of the process is getting it registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission and we are here to help you understand the process in simple steps.
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Naturally, you must have a real business name to start with. The trick is to make sure that your business is as unique as possible as many businesses get registered yearly. Get a unique business name that will be both a trademark and a distinct brand.
Visit the Corporate Affairs Commission to check that the name you chose is available and not taken up by another entry on their list. You will then be presented with Form 008 (business name form) which you re to fill accurately and then submit. To access this form, you will be charged a fee of N500. This form will take one to two weeks to be processed after which you will know if the business name you chose is available or not. If it is not, you will have to choose a new business name and purchase a new form. If it does, you can proceed to the next phase.
You could also go online and download the CAC 1.1 form (Availability Check and Reservation of Name). The token fee also ensures that the name is reserved for the applicant for a period of 60 days.
At this point, you need to prepare a memorandum of understanding through a lawyer. The kind of lawyer you hire for such services is dependent on the proposed objectives of the company you seek to register. The lawyer is to compile the name of all executives, directors and subscribers in the business each of whom should be above 18 and of sound mind and without a criminal record. They are also to provide means of identification to CAC for scrutiny.
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You will then be required to settle filing fees either at the CAC office closest to your locale or even online and proceed to pay stamp duties to the Federal Inland Revenue Service. Please make sure the details on the application forms are correct and describe your business accurately before making the payments.
Prepare and upload the documents in the order described:
1. CAC Form 1.1
2. Memorandum of Understanding
3. Certificate of Proficiency
4. Recognized means of identification from the directors/subscribers
5. Evidence of stamp duty payment
6. Evidence of payment to CAC
Be sure to submit physical copies of the aforementioned documents to the closest CAC office to your residence.
Once you have completed the process of company registration, you will be issued a Certificate of Incorporation and certified true copies of the documents. The entire registration period should ordinarily not take more than two weeks in all.
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