Liberia - Establishing an Office Liberia - Establishing an Office
Under Liberian corporate law, all businesses are required to register or apply for a Business Registration Certificate to authorize doing business or providing services in Liberia. The Liberia Business Registry (LBR) under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI) handles the applications and business registration processes. The fee structure for registration varies depending on whether a business is local, foreign, a sole proprietorship, a partnership, or a corporation. The standard steps to follow in establishing a local business office are noted below:
- Reserve a unique company name with LBR: an applicant can do a name search online or at the LBR helpdesk; business names can be reserved for up to 120 days.
- Register the company using registration application form (RF-001), and submit the completed application with the company’s articles of incorporation, proof of identification, empowered person’s or registered agent’s form, incorporator’s form, shares and shareholders’ form, and information for tax authority form.
- LBR will review the application package and request a Tax Identification Number (TIN) and bank payment slip (BPS) on behalf of the business in question; all businesses operating in Liberia must have a TIN, which is obtained free of charge from Ministry of Finance and Development Planning.
- Once a TIN has been obtained, pay associated business registration fees at the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL)’s window at LBR or use the mobile money payment system; mobile money services are provided by the two leading mobile network operators, Lonestar MTN and Orange Liberia.
- Present the proof of payment to the LBR registrar where the process is completed.
The entire process takes one to four weeks. Registration of a business is valid for 12 calendar months from the date of registration. Conducting commercial activities in Liberia without being registered will result in penalties.
The LBR publishes a fee schedule for new enterprise registrations applicable to different types of legal entities.