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Guide on how to get Tax Identification Number (TIN) online in Nigeria

In this post, we will be discussing everything you need to know about how to get Tax Identification Number (TIN) in Nigeria and what you have to do to get yours. It is free and comes with a lot of advantage, and there is no reason not to have a verified TIN even if your personal circumstances exempt you from paying tax. For most people, though, paying tax is something that they cannot escape from because it is the law. In fact, we will say it is even a privilege to be able to eligible and able to pay tax, although some people may disagree.

This is because, particularly in Nigeria, it has taken the everyday Nigerian, many years to come to terms with the fact that he has to pay his or her tax. Whether it seems appropriate or not, there is no government in the world today – especially in the Western world – that does not stand primarily on the tax paid by its citizens. In fact, it is a crime, punishable by very long-term jail terms, that a legal person does not pay his or her tax.

What is tax?

Tax is a kind of levy or financial charge that is compulsorily placed on an individual or a legal entity – taxpayers – by an organisation through the government to fund government expenditure and other public spendings.

Taxation is very imperative in any economy. This cannot be overemphasised because the effects of an appropriately taxed society are significant. Tax helps in income redistribution. It provides the government of the day with the revenue needed to execute and finance public services such as providing adequate security for the nation, infrastructure, electric power, road networking, social welfare services as well as several other social amenities. For the state (or country), the ability to generate significant funds from taxation creates more openings for it’s the provision of services to the society, which, in turn, boosts economic improvement.

Read Also: Lil Wayne reportedly pays off massive $14 Million tax debt

Types of taxes

The two types of tax known are indirect tax and direct tax.

Indirect tax

This tax applies to manufactured goods or its sale and services. This means you pay it as you purchase goods, products or when you are rendered a service or services by an individual or group. This is done even without being told specifically. It is confirmed in receipts handed out by companies.

This simply means that you do not need a tax identification number to pay Indirect Tax since it is already added to the product purchased or service rendered.

Direct Tax

This is a tax payment made directly to the government or its agencies by the taxpayer. It applies to individuals and companies, organisations or enterprises.

This is where we find the Personal Income Tax and Corporate Tax. They are also the tax payments that require you to have a Tax Identification Number.

1. Personal Income Tax

Personal Income Tax (PIT) law is found in the Personal Income Tax (PIT) Act 104 of 2011. In Nigeria, a taxpayer is required to pay tax on the whole amount of his or her income, irrespective of the location it was earned – within Nigeria or outside the country. Whether it is a salary paid, a wage, an allowance, a fee charged or any type of profit or benefit given or received by a worker can be taxed. In the PIT Act, the ones who are seen as the tax agents on behalf of the tax authorities are the employers. They are the ones expected to collect and remit the taxes deducted from the employees’ dues.

It is important to know that, how liable a taxpayer is, will be dependent on the residence of the taxpayer. Consequently, where a person stays or lives is seen as a place or location that serves the person as a domestic environment or is significantly used by him or her for domestic purposes in Nigeria. This excludes hotels or guesthouses.

Anyone who stays or has stayed in Nigeria for 183 days within a twelve-month duration is seen to be resident in the country. By the way, foreigners who have resident permits are also required to pay tax even if they stay in Nigeria for less than 183 days in any twelve-month duration.

2. Corporate Income Tax

The laws that guide the taxation of companies, organisations, groups and the like in Nigeria state that corporate income tax (CIT) is to be paid on the income of an organisation. This profit is either accumulated, gotten from, brought into or collected in Nigeria. In Nigeria, a company pays its tax in its name or in the name of the entity that represents it. Under this tax law, we find the small, medium-scale and large-scale businesses.

Also Read: Everything you need to know about the Lekki-Ikoyi tollgate e-payment service

What is a Tax Identification Number (TIN)?

The Tax Identification Number (TIN) combines a set of numbers, uniquely put together for the specific identification of a legal company, organisation or individual. The purpose of the Tax Identification Number is specific. It is specially put together for the remittance of tax by these legal persons. It is the Joint Tax Board (JTB) of the Office of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) to issue this Tax Identification Number.

The primary importance of the Tax Identification Number is to show that an individual or a business is a registered taxpayer in the country. The compulsory nature of tax enforces every company, business, organisation and individual to have a Tax Identification Number.

To get a Tax Identification Number as a business or individual you must fill and complete the application form for TIN in Nigeria online. You can also submit it to any of the offices of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

Who can apply for a Tax Identification Number?

If you are Nigerian or live in Nigeria, and you sell a product, render any type of service, own and or run any type of legal business, directly or indirectly work for the government at any level, are a stakeholder in an enterprise in the public or private sector or even a freelancer, you are a legal person and taxable under the provisions of the tax laws of the country and, therefore, you are required to apply/register for and get a TIN.

Why do I need a Tax Identification Number?

You may ask if not acquiring a tax identification number will prevent me from paying tax, is it not better for me not to acquire it?

Actually, No. Whether directly or indirectly, you are still being taxed. More so, the disadvantages of not paying tax versus not having a Tax Identification Number are far more pricey than having it. This is notable particularly if you are a business owner, or desire to go into business or even go into certain areas as an individual. The need for a tax identification number include:

  • If and when you want to apply for a loan from the government you will need to present your evidence of tax payment. This will be accessed by your TIN
  • If and when you want to create a company or business account you will be required, not only to present your company registration documents but also your Tax Identification Number.
  • You may at one time or the other need a license for import, export or even trade. You may not be issued one if you do not present your Tax Identification Number.
  • After buying a vehicle for personal or commercial purposes, it will have to be registered. During the registration process, your TIN will be requested of you for the process to be complete.
  • To get your tax clearance, receive allowances, waivers, incentives and so on, TIN is needed.
  • If you are planning to travel out of the country for business or even do business with foreigners either as an investor or receiving investment, without your Tax Identification Number you will not be able to do so.
  • If or when you want to obtain your Certificate of Occupancy for your house, you will need your TIN

What do I require to get my Tax Identification Number Online in Nigeria?

You should know that it is free of charge to obtain, fill, complete and submit a legitimate application form for TIN. However, some of the things required of you for the process of obtaining your TIN online include:

  1. Full Name: Ensure that you provide your complete and legal name.
  2. Valid ID Card: This can be your driver’s license, national ID Card, international passport or staff ID card
  3. Phone Number: Provide your working and active 11-digit phone number.
  4. Physical Address: Your permanent residence at the time of application is required.
  5. Email: An active email address is also needed.
  6. Non-Optional Marking: All fields that are marked with (*) are considered non-optional and so cannot be omitted. You will need to fill the all on the application form.
  7. No Third Party: It is only the official taxpayer that can use his or her TIN. No third party person has access to it.
  8. Note that each of the address and name lines cannot include above 200 characters. Stay within this range of characters.
  9. Laws of the land are subject to change now and then and whenever need be. So, always check if any amendments have been made to stay updated.

I am a business, how do I apply to get a Tax Identification Number in Nigeria online?

Tax Identification Number is issued by the Joint Tax Board (JTB).

For Businesses

If you own a business, this is the process of getting a Tax Identification Number online in Nigeria:

Step One: Visit the TIN registration portal.

Step Two: Fill and complete the TIN application form by entering

  1. Organisation type
  2. Registration number
  3. Registration name
  4. Main trade name (optional)
  5. Phone Number
  6. Phone number 2 (optional)
  7. Email address
  8. Date of commencement (optional)
  9. Sector
  10. Line of business (optional)
  11. Country
  12. Local Government
  13. City
  14. Street name
  15. Street Number
  16. Financial year begin (optional)
  17. Financial year-end (optional)
  18. Share capital (optional)
  19. Directors details (optional)

Step Three: Click the SUBMIT button

It can take up to 24 hours to get the TIN. This is why you must provide an active working email address and a phone number. However, if you apply offline by visiting the nearest FIRS office, it could take between five to ten days to be ready. Some periods may even extend up to two months, unfortunately.

Read Also: This Is The First Time Our Company Gets Tax Waivers- Devakumar

I am an individual, how do I apply to get Tax Identification Number in Nigeria online?

For individuals

According to the Joint Tax Board, “Individuals are automatically assigned with a TIN based on their BVN (Bank Verification Number) or NIN (National Identity Number).”

This means that for you to get a TIN as an individual, you would need to have a NIN or BVN.

To get a NIN, all you have to do is to register for your National ID Card at any verified bank (e.g. Zenith Bank) or your Local Government Council Office. To get your BVN, just open a bank account and it will be generated for you in a matter of minutes or days as the case may be.

Whenever your Tax Identification Number is ready you will be contacted and notified.

How do I check or verify TIN online?

Step one: Visit JTB TIN verification portal to confirm your tax identification number

Step two: Click the drop-down box and set the appropriate month, year and date

  1. Date of Incorporation (if you want to verify as a company or business) or
  2. Date of birth (if you want to verify as an individual)

Step three: Choose from the options

  1. BVN or NIN or CAC Reg. No (if you want to verify as an individual or company)
  2. Tax Identification Number (if you already have it and only want to verify)
  3. Registered Phone Number (if you prefer to use your phone number in case the others are not accessible)

Step four: Type in the search value (which is either of the options you had selected from Step three)

Step five: Check the reCAPTCHA box “I’m not a robot”

Step six: Click the SUBMIT button

Website https://www.firs.gov.ng/SiteApplication/Home/Home.aspx

https://jtb.gov.ng/home/ for more information.

Email helpdesk@firs.gov.ng

Call: 09074444441; 09074444442; 09072111111; 09073777777

Address: Joint Tax Board (JTB) 12 Sokode Street, Wuse zone 5 Abuja F.C.T

Email: contactus@jtb.gov.ng

Call: 08039187289


The importance of having a Tax Identification Number cannot be overemphasised. Paying tax is an obligation because the government needs the money to provide essential services for all us.

Moreover, a time will come when might something you need from the government will require you to prove that your tax payment is up-to-date. Don’t let not having a TIN impede you. Even if you are not earning enough to be eligible to pay tax, having a TIN does not hurt you but rather is an advantage.

If you are not sure of your TIN, just go online to verify following the steps provided in this article.

If you cannot find it, use the contact details we provided to reach your nearest tax office and they will help you get your TIN.

Jenny M
Jennifer Madunagu is a diction/phonetics instructor and also a creative writer. She loves seeing movies and enjoys reading books. To follow Jennifer Madunagu - Twitter: @Jmadunagu


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