What You Need To Know About Registering A Taxpayer

Prior to registering a taxpayer for any tax type like VAT, Business Licence or Real Property tax, there are a number of essential things you may need to know. The level of information required will depend on the taxpayer and the tax type.

A taxpayer type refers to whether you are a sole proprietor/trader, company, partnership, trustee, non-profit/charitable organisation, Embassy or such. A tax type would be Value Added Tax, Real Property Tax, Business Licence, etc.

  • Taxpayer Details. Businesses or organisations will need to provide the business/organisation name exactly as provided to the relevant registering or licencing authority. They will also need to provide registration or licence numbers and type codes issued by these agencies. The date the business or organisation was formed may also be required. The National Insurance Number may be mandatory depending on your taxpayer type.

    The taxpayer details may also capture the "Nature of business" activity. Most agencies use international standard codes. OTAS uses International Standard Industrial Classification (ISIC) of All Economic Activities (Rev.4; United Nations Statistics Division). The code has 4 Levels (Section, Division, Group, and Class). Example, a General store would have the ISIC Code 4711.
    Section G - Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles
    Division 47 - Retail trade, except of motor vehicles and motorcycles
    Group 471 - Retail sale in non-specialised stores
    Class 4711 - Retail sale in non-specialised stores with food, beverages or tobacco predominating
  • Taxpayer Contacts. This includes business address, mailing address, and in some instances the home address. Telephone, Fax, and Mobile numbers may be mandatory depending on the tax type. For online services an e-Mail address is mandatory.
  • Additional Details. Depending on the tax type you will have to provide information on branches, directors, partners, shareholders, or other related/associated businesses or individuals.
  • Business or Tax Related Activity. The information provided here is subject to the tax type. Example, for Business Licence you will need to know your Annual Turnover, for VAT you will need to know the value of your Taxable Supplies (excluding capital goods), and for Real Property Tax your Assessment number.
  • Bank Details. As part of improved efficiency and effectiveness, the Government of The Bahamas is automating its payment processes; in this regard, refunds or payments will be made directly to the taxpayer’s bank account. It is suggested that you provide the primary bank account of the taxpayer being registered.
  • Supporting Documents. In some instances supporting documents may be needed at the time of registration or may be required to be submitted before an approval can be given. Again, the type of supporting document is subject to the tax type. Supporting documents may include:
    • Current and valid Business Licence
    • Certificate of Incorporation
    • Certificate of Good Standing
    • Letter of good standing from National Insurance Board
    • Bank Verification Letter

Incomplete and/or incorrect information will cause a delay in processing a registration.

Each online taxpayer registration service will provide detailed information pertinent to the tax type.

Who should use this system?

The taxpayer themself, their employee, or related person of the taxpayer, or taxpayer representative may submit a registration on behalf of the taxpayer. Depending on the legislation representatives may be fully or partially liable in their role of acting on behalf of the taxpayer.

To register a taxpayer you must have a user account to access the Online Tax Administration System.