The tax ideņtification number is required by any citizen of Nigeria working with the private sector or government. It is also required by people who own businesses or by people who have the intention of starting their own business. It is essential that you know what tax identification number is and the importance of having one.
Many small business owners believe that registering their company or business names is all that is required from them to be reckoned with as serious entrepreneurs.
Consequently, they fail to register for tax with the Tax authorities. Hence, they avoid paying taxes. By implication, this has legal consequences in such businesses and their owners.
Companies or business organizations who evade tax suffer the embarrassment of litigation from tax authorities, leading to the closure of such businesses.
This leads to the loss of revenue and the blacklisting of such companies and their board of directors. In this post, we will treat how to get the Tax Identification Number in Nigeria.
TIN is a requirement for companies, individuals whose businesses are established in Nigeria. It is also an identification tool. It is used for recording tax payment information of people, businesses and companies.
The Reasons Why TIN is Needed
a. It is needed for identifying and verifying tax payers in Nigeria.
b. It is required for opening a business/company account.
c. It is required for applying for government loans and grants.
d. It is required for registering imported cars.
e. It is required for obtaining certificate of occupancy.
f. It is required to earn foreign exchange.
g. It is required for the receipt of capital imports into Nigeria.
h. It is required to enjoy tax allowances and waives in Nigeria.
Meaning of Tax Identification Number
The tax identification number is abbreviated as TIN. It is a unique identification number that is given to an individual or a company for the major purpose of remaining tax to the government through the Joint Tax Board and the Federal Inland Revenue Service.
The TIN falls under the control of the Tax Office. It is prepared by the tax office and given to individuals, registered companies, registered businesses for the purposes of proper identification and verification.
Why TIN is Required in Nigeria
Every individual, business or company in Nigeria must have the Tax Identification number because it shows that they are registered, identified and verified tax payers in Nigeria.
In Nigeria, payment of taxes is compulsory. Individuals, businesses and companies are mandated to pay taxes and have their own unique TINs. This will save them from the legal consequences of evading tax and not having a TIN.
It also ensures that a business is legal in Nigeria. Individuals, companies and businesses are given TINs after completing their tax registration at the Tax Office.
TIN is also required to get tax clearance certificate for individuals that are interested in transacting business with multinational companies. This will allow them to be awarded juicy contracts.
Cost Implication of Getting TIN
Applying for TIN is absolutely free if charge if you apply for it on your own and if you have not violated tax rules and received any tax sanction based on the time frame given according to The law.
TIN registration is free and can be done on the Joint Tax Board and Federal Inland Revenue Service websites.
However, if you employ third parties to register for you, you may incure some registration costs.
Time frame for Obtaining TIN
It takes approximately ten working days for the Tax offices to process the TIN. However because of administrative problems, logistic problems, shortage of staff and backlog I of requests, it may take up to a month or two months to process your tax identification number.
How to Apply for Tax Identification Number
You can apply for the tax identification number as an individual, a registered company, a registered business name on the Joint Tax Board platform or the Federal Inland Revenue Service platform.
It is also important to know the important documents required to apply for tax identification number as a registered company, individual and registered business name. The requirements are listed below.
TIN Application for Individuals
As an individual, you need to go the nearest FIRS office with the following documents:
a. Original and photocopies of your
b. National ID card
c. Driver’s licence
d. Permanent voter’s card
e. International passport.
f. Completed application form
g. Finally, you submit the application form.
TIN Application for a Registered Company
Go to the nearest FIRS office with the original and photocopies of the following documents below:
a. Certificate of Incorporation forms CAC2 and CAC7
b. Your memorandum and article of aasociation
c. Your company seal – this will be used to stamp the TIN registration forms at the FIRS office.
d. Utility Bill – PHCN or Water bills
e. A written application to the office of the FIRS chairman on your company’s letter headed paper
f. The completed TIN application form ( The FIRS office gives this form in triplicates, so you are expected to fill and submit the forms). The tax application will request for the following information:
g. Name of your Company
h. Registered Office of your company
i. Business Address of your company ( you may leave this blank if your registered office is same as your business address)
j. Precise Nature of your Business
k. Date of company Incorporation
l. Date the Company Commenced Business
m. Accounting Date of your company
n. Name and Address of Banker(s) ( if you have opened a bank account)
o. Particulars of Major Shareholders of your company
p. Particulars of Directors of your company
q. Name and Address of Auditors for your company
r. Name and Address of Tax Representative of your company.
Important Guidelines to Note When Filling Application Forms
a. Ensure that you fill the compulsory sections on the form marked by an asterisks (*);
b. The characters of the name as well as address filled on the form must not exceed 200;
c. Ensure that you have an active and functioning email address to be used in the application process;
d. Enter eleven digits for your mobile phone number.
Validating and Updating the TIN Obtained from the Tax Office
For this, you will need your email address and phone number used during the registration process.
Validation ensures that your TIN meets the necessary conditions for business transactions with other Government bodies like the Nigerian Custom Service, National Agency For Food And Drug Administration and Control, and Central Bank of Nigeria etc.
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