How to Register a Non-Profit Organization in the Philippines

Registering a non-profit organization (NPO) in the Philippines involves a series of legal and administrative steps. Non-profit organizations, also known as non-stock corporations, are established to operate for purposes other than profit, such as charity, education, cultural, or social welfare. Here is a comprehensive guide to registering a non-profit organization in the Philippines.

Step-by-Step Guide to Registering a Non-Profit Organization

  1. Determine the Purpose and Structure

Action: Clearly define the purpose and objectives of your non-profit organization. Determine the type of non-profit (charity, foundation, association, etc.) and its structure. Considerations:

  • Ensure that the purpose aligns with charitable, educational, cultural, social, or similar objectives.
  • Decide on the governance structure, including the board of trustees.
  1. Draft the Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws

Action: Prepare the Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws for the organization. Requirements:

  • Articles of Incorporation: This document must include the organization’s name, purpose, term, principal office address, names of incorporators, number of trustees, and other statutory requirements.
  • By-Laws: The by-laws should detail the governance and operational framework, including membership, duties of trustees, meeting protocols, and financial management.
  1. Reserve and Register the Organization’s Name

Action: Check the availability of the proposed name and reserve it with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Process:

  • Name Verification: Use the SEC’s online verification system to ensure the name is unique and not similar to existing registered names.
  • Name Reservation: Reserve the name through the SEC’s online portal.
  1. Notarize the Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws

Action: Have the Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws notarized by a registered notary public. Requirements:

  • All incorporators must sign the documents in the presence of the notary public.
  • Ensure that all necessary information is correctly filled out before notarization.
  1. Register with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

Action: Submit the required documents to the SEC to obtain a Certificate of Incorporation. Documents Needed:

  • Notarized Articles of Incorporation
  • Notarized By-Laws
  • Name Verification Slip
  • Treasurer’s Affidavit
  • Joint Affidavit of Two Incorporators
  • Proof of Payment of the Registration Fee
  • Cover Sheet Process:
  • File the documents with the SEC through its online system or over-the-counter.
  • Pay the required registration fee.
  • Wait for the SEC to review the documents and issue the Certificate of Incorporation.
  1. Obtain Barangay Clearance and Mayor’s Permit

Action: Secure the necessary local government permits to operate legally. Process:

  • Barangay Clearance: Apply for a Barangay Clearance from the barangay where the principal office is located.
  • Mayor’s Permit: Obtain a Mayor’s Permit from the city or municipal hall. Submit the Barangay Clearance, Certificate of Incorporation, and other required documents.
  1. Register with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)

Action: Register the non-profit organization with the BIR to obtain a Tax Identification Number (TIN) and authority to print receipts. Documents Needed:

  • BIR Form 1903 (Application for Registration)
  • Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws
  • Certificate of Incorporation from the SEC
  • Treasurer’s Affidavit
  • Sworn Statement of Assets and Liabilities
  • Proof of Address Process:
  • Submit the documents to the Revenue District Office (RDO) where the principal office is located.
  • Pay the registration fee and Documentary Stamp Tax (DST).
  • Obtain the Certificate of Registration (BIR Form 2303) and authority to print official receipts.
  1. Register with the Social Security System (SSS), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), and Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-IBIG)

Action: Ensure compliance with employee benefits regulations by registering with these agencies. Process:

  • Submit the required documents to each agency to register as an employer and provide benefits to employees.
  • Follow the specific registration processes and requirements of each agency.

Additional Compliance Requirements

  1. Annual Reporting

Requirement: Non-profit organizations must submit annual reports to the SEC. Actions:

  • General Information Sheet (GIS): File the GIS annually within 30 days from the date of the annual members’ meeting.
  • Audited Financial Statements (AFS): Submit the AFS to the SEC within 120 days after the fiscal year-end.
  1. BIR Compliance

Requirement: Comply with ongoing tax obligations and reporting requirements. Actions:

  • File annual income tax returns, even if the organization is tax-exempt.
  • Submit monthly and quarterly tax returns for withholding taxes, VAT, and other applicable taxes.

Best Practices for Compliance and Management

  1. Maintain Accurate Records

Action: Keep detailed and accurate records of all financial transactions, meeting minutes, and official documents. Benefit: Ensures transparency and accountability, facilitates audits, and supports compliance efforts.

  1. Regularly Update Information

Action: Update the SEC, BIR, and other relevant agencies about any changes in the organization’s structure, address, or other significant details. Benefit: Maintains the organization’s good standing and compliance with regulatory requirements.

  1. Engage Legal and Accounting Professionals

Action: Consult with legal and accounting professionals to navigate complex regulatory requirements and ensure compliance. Benefit: Provides expert guidance and reduces the risk of non-compliance.

  1. Develop Internal Controls

Action: Establish internal controls and policies to manage the organization’s operations, finances, and governance. Benefit: Enhances efficiency, accountability, and compliance with legal and regulatory standards.


Registering a non-profit organization in the Philippines involves navigating a series of legal and administrative steps. By following this comprehensive guide and adhering to best practices, you can ensure that your non-profit organization is legally compliant and well-positioned to achieve its mission.

Navigating the business landscape in the Philippines can be both rewarding and intricate. Whether you’re embarking on a new venture or scaling up, ensuring that your corporate endeavors are in line with local regulations is paramount.

At CBOS Business Solutions Inc., we pride ourselves on simplifying these processes for our clients. As a seasoned professional services company, we offer comprehensive assistance with SEC Registration, Visa processing, and a myriad of other essential business requirements. Our team of experts is dedicated to ensuring that your business is compliant, well-established, and ready to thrive in the Philippine market.

Why venture into the complexities of business registration and compliance alone? Allow our team to guide you every step of the way. After all, your success is our commitment.

Get in touch today and let us be your partner in achieving your business goals in the Philippines.

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