It’s easy to get your TIN in Nigeria, but it’s not always clear where to start. So we’ve compiled a simple 9-step guide that will help you navigate the process step-by-step.
Tax payment is compulsory for companies, as announced by the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). A Tax Identification Number (TIN) will be assigned automatically to a company after it is successfully registered, especially a limited liability company.
Every Nigerian resident or non-resident earning income or engaging in a business must have a TIN in Nigeria.
However, there are some exceptions to this rule: Individuals who are not required to register for a TIN in Nigeria because they do not have a Nigerian address can still apply for one online at the FIRS website; they will also be required to provide proof of their identities such as their passport number and photograph.
There are various categories of people who are expected to have TINs under the law, namely:
- Individuals (sole proprietors)
- Companies (corporate bodies)
- Associations and Clubs. * Firms. * Trustees of Trusts (newly introduced).
This does not cover some businesses, such as business names. Businesses that do not fall under a Limited Liability Company will have to apply for the TIN in Nigeria with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
Individuals (sole proprietors)
Sole proprietors are individuals who have a business or profession that generates income. They are expected to have TINs and should make sure that their TIN is current before filing their annual return.
Examples: A sole proprietor is an individual who owns any business, trade, or profession. It can also be applied to individuals who own companies but do not fit into any other category (for example, if they do not pay employees).
Companies (corporate bodies)
Companies are expected to have TINs and should make sure that their TIN is current before filing their annual return. A company can be any type of business, including a corporation or limited liability partnership. It can also apply to a non-profit organization or charity.
Associations and Clubs
Associations and Clubs are not required to register with the FIRS, but they are required to have a TIN in Nigeria. They must apply for a TIN through their members who are individuals or corporate bodies.
For example, if you are an association of real estate agents who organize regular meetings to discuss issues affecting them all as professionals in the field, then your association should apply for a TIN so that it can be registered with FIRS.
- Firms are companies that have a minimum of two partners. They are not required to register with FIRS if they are engaged in trading or manufacturing activities and their annual revenue does not exceed N500,000.
- A firm may only be established for a period of five years from its registration date (or renewal). A firm may be dissolved at any time by filing an application for dissolution before the end of its term; this application should be filed with the Federal High Court within seven days after dissolution or within such further time as may be allowed by law.
Trustees of Trusts (newly introduced)
In the new FIRS Act, Trustees of Trusts are required to have a TIN. The Trustee must also register with FIRS and pay tax on income earned from Nigeria.
How to apply for a TIN in Nigeria
Applying for a TIN in Nigeria for an already incorporated business is easy. If the business is not yet registered, you should do that with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) first before you proceed to apply for a TIN at the Federal Inland Revenue Service.
Once you have fully registered your business, you can proceed to visit any Federal Inland Revenue Service office closest to you with the following documents;
- Memorandum & Articles of Association
- Certificate of Incorporation: CAC2, CAC7
- Company seal
- Utility bill
- Application letter on company letter-headed paper
- Duly completed TIN Application form
You are required to take the original copy and 2 photocopies of each document. The originals are required for sighting only, while 1 copy will be left with the FIRS, and 1 copy will be stamped and signed by a FIRS official as evidence that you have made an application.
While applying yourself for TIN is free, there might be additional costs if you choose to engage the services of a third party, and you might incur some costs.
Normally, the TIN should be assigned almost instantly or the next day, but now it depends on the workload of the FIRS offices, and as such, the whole process drags on for about a week or two.
Paying Tax is a civic duty; businesses are required to fulfill this obligation. For your business to be able to fulfill this obligation, you need to obtain your Tax Identification number.
If you want to get your TIN in Nigeria, then this is the right guide for you. It will teach you how to do it and what documents are required.