HOPING to comply with President Benigno S. Aquino III’s thrust to lessen red tape in government transactions, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) hopes to begin by making changes in the process of registering business names.

A consultation was held in Cebu yesterday on the implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act 3883 or the Business Name Law.

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Lawyer Ruth Tan of the DTI Bureau of Trade Regulation and Consumer Protection unit discussed the changes with local businessmen, local government units, government agencies and other institutions.

Shortened

Tan said that rather than registering a business name for each branch, the new rules would require proprietors to register either by barangay, by city or municipality, by region or nationwide.

With this plan, the process of confirming if a business name has already been claimed will be shortened.

Under the existing rules, a fixed fee of P300 is paid for each branch.

But under the amended rules, a proprietor who registers his business name for the city or municipality does not have to register again if he opens another branch within the same territory.

Likewise, those who are opening only small businesses such as sari-sari stores can register their business name for use in that barangay. If it is registered for use only in one barangay, the name or one similar to it can be registered by another proprietor in another barangay. This reduces the search time because they will only be searching for similar business names within the barangay.

But if a proprietor applies for a business name nationally and a similar business name is reflected in a barangay, city or municipality or in a region, they will still approve it for use but the business cannot open in the specific location unless the applicant can present a waiver from the owner of the business name.

Tan said this will hasten the search because out of 1.5 million business names registered with the DTI, the search for some applications will only be limited to a barangay, a city or municipality or a region.

Also, they will lessen the requirements needed for a certification of business name.

The consultation was meant to get the opinions of stakeholders.

Tan said they have developers who are setting up a system for effective searching and they hope to launch the new system by Oct. 1.