Fines and penalties for counterfeit certificates being displayed on businesses…


Mr. E. J. Bowe

Nassau, Bahamas — The public is advised that individuals can face fines or other penalties if they are found with counterfeit certificates displayed in their business.

According to the First Schedule (Regulation 44), Sections 4 (4) “Not being a taxable person, or being an unregistered taxable person, collecting, advertising or quoting VAT in respect of a taxable supply made to another person”, such contravention of this provision is a very serious offence liable to a fine of up to $50,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or both fine and imprisonment.

The public should also be aware, that certificates issued by the VAT Department have distinguishable features. A Tax Identification Number (TIN) Certificate has The Bahamas Coat of Arms watermark. Merchants with TIN Certificates cannot charge VAT.

The VAT certificate has a VAT Bahamas watermark. Merchants with VAT certificate are permitted to charge and collect VAT.

Consumers should be aware of these features and report all inconsistencies to the VAT Department at telephone 225-7280 or e-mail:

January 26th, 2015