Applying For Business Licences

All business licence applications- annual, temporary and occasional must be completed online. Persons seeking to obtain a licence must register and apply online at vat.revenue.gov.bs.

Form Title
pdf icon Nature of Business and Their Requirements

ANNUAL BUSINESS LICENCE
ELIGIBILITY

Any Bahamian citizen or permanent resident with right to work in The Bahamas who is:

  1. Interested in registering a new business, or
  2. Existing Business Owner
    • Partnership
    • Privately Trading companies
    • Publicly Trading companies
    • Limited Liability Partnerships
    • Limited Liability Company
    • Sole-  Proprietorships
    • Home Based Businesses

A non-Bahamian applying to conduct business in The Bahamas requires approval from the Bahamas Investment Authority

PROCESS

All business licence applications – annual, temporary and occasional are completed online.

  1. Go online to vat.revenue.gov.bs
  2. Click the ‘Create Account’ tab and create a user account. Fill in the account registration form online and submit by clicking ‘Create My Account’. You will receive a reply shortly to the email address you provided in the online form. The email will contain your username and provide further instructions.
  3. Use your username and password to log-in to your online account. The first page will be ‘Getting Started’, here you will be provided with information, necessary documents and requirements you may need to proceed in completing the online registration.
  4. Before you begin the Business Licence Registration process you will need to provide some taxpayer details online.
  5. Enter your contact and additional details in the required fields in the online form.
  6. After completing the Taxpayer Details you will proceed to the Business Licence tab.
  7. Enter your Business Licence Registration Details  e.g. (Bahamian/ Foreign owned)
  8. Apply for the Business Licence by clicking the ‘Add New Licence’ tab. You may apply for more than one Business Licence at the same time using the ‘Add New Licence’ tab.
  9. Select the type of Business Licence needed (annual, temporary, occasional)
  10. Enter the business information in the respective fields in the online form:
    • Business/Trade Name and any alternate trade names
    • Commencement date
    • Expiry Date
    • Business NIB Number
    • Exp ected turnover for next financial year
  11. Upload one or more documents under the ‘Supporting Documents’ section
    • Proof of citizenship
    • Approvals related to your selected business
  12. Payment must be made upon completion of the application. See the section on ‘Payment- BL’. Read the declaration and agree to the terms and conditions before submitting the online application.
  13. Once all document requirements are met and approved, the application is then processed within 7 working days.  The Business Licence Department will contact the applicant via the online user account for additional information or clarification if needed.  You should regularly check your messages in your online account and the email address you provided for correspondence from the Department.
  14. An electronic business licence certificate in the form of a PDF will be sent to your online user account and email address provided once all of the documents submitted are approved and the taxes due have been paid in full.

SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS (scan and upload in ‘Supporting Documents’ section of online form). Visit the ‘How To-BL’ tab to view the video how to complete your Online Business Licence Registration.

  • Prerequisite Approval(s) from relevant government or regulatory agencies where required
  • Copy of a Valid Passport or a copy of permanent resident certificate.
  • National Insurance Card
  • National Insurance Letter of Good Standing
  • Business Name – If you currently are the holder of a Business Name but owe arrears, these must be paid to the Registrar General’s Department and the receipt indicating payment of arrears must be furnished.
  • Certificate of Incorporation from the Registrar General’s Department must accompany the application where applicable
  • Real Property Tax – If the applicant owns the property on which the business is located, the real property tax account must be brought up to date or an agreement entered into for payment.

Necessary Approvals – If the business operates a STORE or other business operation – they must seek approval as follows:

  • Department of Physical Planning (Zoning)
  • Royal Bahamas Police Force (if alcoholic beverages are being sold and/ or music and dancing)
  • Ministry of Public Works, Building Control (Inspection of Building)
  • Department of Environmental Health Services (Sanitation Certificate)