When the lockdown was announced on 26 March 2020, Employers who fell under the Essential Service category were required to apply to the CIPC for an essential service certificate in order to legally operate.
From 1 May 2020, Level 4 Regulations were introduced, which allowed a number of additional business to slowly open and commence operations. The list and categories of businesses allowed to operate are tabled in Government Gazette Notice 11098, Vol. 658 No. 43258 dated 29 April 2020. Importantly, Employers who originally obtained their CIPC certificates under lockdown, must now obtain an updated certificate under Level 4.
The business category for some industries has varied slightly, since the first available options for selection.
Employers will note further that the date of the issue of the new Level 4 certificate, is stated on the top of the certificate to ensure compliance within the timelines and lockdown levels. Employers who previously were unable to obtain a certificate under lockdown, may now qualify for a certificate under Level 4.
The CIPC certificate can be obtained on www.bizportal.gov.za or alternatively, the CIPC office can be contacted telephonically on 086 100 2472.
Employers must remember that should an agent from the Department of Labour, Health Inspector or any law enforcement agency arrive at their place of business, besides for the strict hygiene measures, Employers will be required to provide a copy of the essential service certificate upon request.
What if you trade in a partnership or trust and you cannot obtain a CIPC certificate because you are not registered as a company?
Unfortunately, at this stage, that is correct. According to Biz Portal, Trusts, Sole Proprietors and Partnerships will not be able to get a certificate.