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Ask A Lawyer

Dear Eki,
My name is Ade Wahab.
Regards After making the necessary research, I went to Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), Alausa, Lagos to register my company.
I took along my Memorandum and Articles of Association, Form Co 2 and Form Co 7 and filing fees. However, to my surprise, they refused to collect my documents! They said registration is now done online. They also said something about having the name approved first.
Please, I don’t understand this, because I’ve been doing business with my company name for a while.
Please, guide me through this process.  I am anxiously waiting to hear from you.
Dear Ade,
Company registration in Nigeria is a little bit complex. I will try to explain it as simply as possible.
The Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990 (CAMA) is the law regulating the incorporation of business entities in Nigeria. Section 1 of CAMA established the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). CAC is solely responsible for the incorporation of business entities in Nigeria.  Before now company registration was mainly done manually. However, effective September 1, 2016, CAC made online registration the only platform for company incorporation.
This mode of incorporation is applicable only to “start to finish” branches, that is, branches that can start and finish the process. Alausa is one of such branches.
The procedure for online registration is as follows:
* Visit Corporate Affairs Commission  website
* Click ‘create account’ on the home page.

* Complete the forms on display.

FOR GENERAL USERS, the website will display the pre-entered ”USERNAME” and the auto-generated ”PASSWORD.”

Accredited users are mailed their ”USERNAME” and ”PASSWORD” after approval at the back end of the website.
* Access the Company Registration Portal (CRP) after account creation,
* Conduct availability search: You have the option of entering a maximum of two names.
* Complete the registration form. You will be asked to select the branch to handle the registration.
* Pay the filing fee: You can pay online or at the bank.
* Pay for e-stamping online.
* Download documents.
*Print and sign appropriately.
* Upload the registration documents and accompanying documents.

* Collection of certificate and accompanying documents at the selected branch.

Please note that you are not permitted to do business with any name without registration. So, you will have to run availability search on your “company” name.  If available, lucky you! If otherwise, you would have to keep entering different names until you get an approval.

I hope you find this helpful. Should you need more information or further clarification, feel free to contact me.