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How to Start a Business in Jamaica

The following are the forms through which a business can be established in Jamaica:

    • Private Companies limited by shares.  
    • Public Companies limited by shares.  
    • Companies limited by guarantee (either with or without share capital).  
    • Companies having unlimited liability.  
    • Branches of foreign corporations (overseas companies).  
    • Partnerships – general or limited.  Joint Ventures.
    • Sole Proprietorships.

Incorporate local company or register business name at the Companies Office of Jamaica (COJ).

Company Name Registration

Ascertain whether the desired name is available and acceptable by completing and submitting a Companies Name Search and Name Reservation Form at the Companies Office of Jamaica.

Complete and submit the following documents after which a Certificate of Incorporation is issued:

    • The Articles of Incorporation (Form 1A). The Articles must be stamped at the Taxpayer Audit & Assessment Department.
    • A Declaration of Compliance (Form 2). This Declaration should be made by an Attorney-at- law or Chartered Secretary engaged in the formation of the company or a Director or Secretary named in the Articles of Incorporation, stating that all the requirements of the Companies Act 2004 were adhered to when the Articles of Incorporation were being prepared. This document must be signed and sealed by a Justice of the Peace.
    • A Registered Office Notice (Form 17). Note that this document records the registered or legal address of the company.

Business Name Registration

Complete and submit the following forms for Business Name Registration:

    • Application for Registration By Sole Trader – BN1 Form
    • Application for Registration By Partnership – BN2 Form
    • Application for Registration By Corporation – BN3 Form

 Application Forms are available online at https://www.orcjamaica.com/docs/

COJ Fee Schedule is available at https://www.orcjamaica.com/fees/

Obtain National Insurance (NIS) reference number from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security.

Required Documents:

    • Employer Business Registration Application (Form R1)
    • Certificate of Incorporation along with Articles and Memorandum of Association
    • Business Name Certificate

 Additional information and application form for the NIS can be accessed online at www.mlss.gov.jm.

The Taxpayer Registration Number (TRN) can be obtained from the Taxpayer Registration Centre at the Tax Administration Services Department (TASD) or at any of the Inland Revenue Office (Collectorate) located island wide.

Sole Proprietors

Required Documents:

    • Application for Taxpayer Registration (Individuals) – FORM 1
    • Valid ID
    • National Insurance Scheme (NIS) Card
    • Business Name Registration Certificate (BNRC) obtained from Companies Office of Jamaica


Partnerships

Required Documents:

    • Application for Taxpayer Registration (Organizations) – (Form 2) signed by a Partner
    • Business Name Registration Certificate issued by the Companies Office of Jamaica
    • Verification of NIS Registration (NIS Letter or Payment Card)
    • Individual TRN and NIS for each Partner
    • Valid ID for Signatory Officer


Companies (Local)

Required Documents:

    • Application for Taxpayer Registration (Organization) – FORM 2 signed by a Director or the Company Secretary Certificate of Incorporation
    • Articles and Memorandum of Association (for companies registered before February 1, 2005)
    • Articles of Incorporation (for companies registered after February 1, 2005)
    • Verification of NIS Registration (NIS Letter or Payment Card)
    • Individual TRN for each Director
    • Valid ID for Signatory Officer


Companies  (Overseas)

Required Documents:

    • Application for Taxpayer Registration (Organizations) – FORM 2 signed by an Authorized Officer or the Local Representative
    • Notarized copies of Registration or Charter Documents (if the company is not registered in Jamaica)
    • Letter of Registration from the Companies Office of Jamaica (COJ) if the company is registered in Jamaica
    • Verification of NIS Registration (NIS Letter or Payment Card) if the company has employees in Jamaica
    • Form 19 or 31 (issued by COJ) stating Local Representative if the company is registered locally
    • TRN for the Local Representative or Directors
    • Valid ID for Signatory Officer

Apply for GCT Registration at any of the Inland Revenue Office (Collectorate) located island wide as well as the Tax Administration & Assessment Department (TAAD).Required Documents:

    • Complete an ‘Application for General Consumption Tax Registration’ – FORM 1
    • Business Name Registration Certificate or Certificate of Incorporation
    • Business or Company TRN

An application is to be submitted to the Tax Administration Services Department (TASD).

Required Documents:

    • Application for Tax Compliance Certificate Form
    • Certificate of Incorporation
    • TRN
    • Tax Receipts for Corporate Income Tax, PAYE, NHT, HEART, Education Tax, General Consumption Tax, NIS, and SCT
    • Clearance Letters from GCT, HEART Trust, Inland Revenue Dept, NIS, and NHT
    • TCC Applications may be submitted in office, online, via email or fax.

Contributions payable by businesses/companies under various legislations are:

    • Income Tax
    • Education Tax
    • National Insurance (NIS)
    • National Housing Trust (NHT) Contributions

Human Employment & Resource Training (HEART) Fund Contributions

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