Requirements to Create a Company in Guatemala
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In order to register a company in Guatemala, it is important to know that there are two ways to accomplish it:

  1. As an Individual Trader.
  2. Or through a Trading Company or a Limited Company.

It is important to count with professional advice from Lawyers in Guatemala, to assure a proper registration in the Commercial Registry.

The process to register an Individual Trader could takes from 1 to 2 weeks, in which case the Commercial Registry will provide a Trading Company License, wherein may appear one or more people, as co-owners.

The process to register a Limited Company is more complex, because it is necessary to elaborate a Public Deed of a Trading Company, done by a Notary and its registration may take from 2 to 3 weeks.

If you register a Limited Company, the Commercial Registry will provide 2 Licenses:

  1. Trading Company License.
  2. Limited Company Trading License, and this last one will be the owner of the Trading Company.

In the Partnership Agreement, there will be established different stipulations or clauses like:

  • Name of the Limited Company.
  • Commercial Name.
  • Commercial object.
  • Paid-in capital.
  • Distribution of shares.
  • Names of the partners, contributions of the partners.
  • Appointment of legal representative.
  • And others.

Both figures are registered in the Commercial Registry. However, besides the mentioned differences, there are diverse procedures to register each one, which are detailed below.

REQUIREMENTS AND STEPS TO REGISTER AN INDIVIDUAL TRADER AND A TRADING COMPANY:

  1. Complete the registration form of the Individual Trader and Trading Company provided by the Commercial Registry.
  2. Pay in a Banrural agency, the corresponding tariffs.
  3. Submit the application to the Commercial Registry with the following documents:
    1. Printed and signed form.
    2. Copy of the Personal Identification Document of the owner and bill that supports the location of the Company.
    3. Pick up at the Commercial Registry the License or download it from its website and stick the corresponding tax stamps.

REQUIREMENTS AND STEPS TO REGISTER A LIMITED COMPANY:

  1. Fill the application form to register a Trading Company.
  2. Complete the following tariff payments in a Banrural agency:
    • Publication of edicts of the Limited Company.
    • Payment of the authorization of the books.
    • If the authorized capital does not exceed Q499,999.99 the tariff payment is “0”. If the authorized capital exceeds Q500,000.00 an extra tariff must be paid.
  3. The file is checked by the Legal Department of the Commercial Registry and also by a deputy of the Superintendence of the Tax Administration. If the presented file covers all the requirements, the Limited Company will be registered and a Tax Identification Number will be assigned.
  4. Present the following documents:
    • Application form.
    • Original receipts.
    • Testimony of the Partnership agreement.
    • Appointment of legal representative.
    • Personal Identification Number of each partner.
    • Bill that supports the address of the Company.
    • Municipal ticket of the legal representative or the Notary.
  5. The Commercial Registry will provide the following documents:
    • Partnership agreement operated.
    • Appointment of legal representative operated.
    • Limited Company Trading License (with the corresponding tax stamps).
    • Trading License (with the corresponding tax stamps).
    • Authorization stickers for the books.

Should I select a Trading Company or a Limited Company?

When starting a business, it is common that many people choose the Trading Company and the Individual Trader, and leave as a last or future option the Limited Company.

This is mainly, because the registration of a Limited Company is more expensive, so that is why the Trading Company could result more convenient.

This does not implicate that the Limited Company is the best option. However, it is important to evaluate the legal, administrative and financial benefits that offer each one of these options.It is also important to have an effective legal advice that helps you evaluate the best option that will give you the capacity to take the best decision.