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Step 4: Issue investor certificates

Once you’ve submitted your SEIS Compliance Statement (SEIS2) and received HMRC’s approval, the next critical step is to provide your investors with the SEIS3 certificates using the Unique Investment Reference (UIR) number.

What is the UIR Number?

The Unique Investment Reference (UIR) number is an 8-digit identifier HMRC allocates once your SEIS Compliance Statement (SEIS2) is approved. This number is essential for tracking each SEIS investment and is required for issuing SEIS3 certificates to your investors.

Why are SEIS3 certificates important?

SEIS3 certificates are necessary for investors to claim income tax relief under the SEIS scheme. Promptly issuing these demonstrates your commitment to your investors and helps maintain their confidence in your business.

Here’s how to handle this process efficiently:

What steps should you take in order to issue SEIS3 certificates?

  1. Receive HMRC Approval:
    Ensure you have received confirmation from HMRC that your SEIS2 Compliance Statement has been approved.

Store/photograph everything that HMRC sends back to you, as there are often no digital copies, and investors often lose these and ask you for them later.

  1. Obtain the UIR Number:
    HMRC will provide a Unique Investment Reference (UIR) number specific to your SEIS application upon approval. This number is necessary for completing the SEIS3 certificates.
  2. Prepare SEIS3 Certificates:
    Log in to the Government Gateway platform, where you submitted the SEIS2 form. Then, access the SEIS3 certificate template provided by HMRC.
  3. Fill Out SEIS3 Certificates:
    Enter the details of each investor who has purchased shares in your company. This includes their name, the number of shares purchased, the amount invested, and the UIR number provided by HMRC. Provide details about your company, including the company name, registration number, and the date the shares were issued.
  4. Review the Information:
    Carefully review all the information entered on the SEIS3 certificates to ensure accuracy. Mistakes can delay your investors’ ability to claim their tax relief.
  5. Distribute SEIS3 Certificates:
    Print and sign each SEIS3 certificate. Distribute the signed SEIS3 certificates to your investors electronically or via postal mail, based on their preference.

Tips for a Smooth SEIS3 Process

  • Be Timely: Issue SEIS3 certificates when you receive HMRC approval to help your investors claim tax relief without delay. This also avoids them having to chase you and makes you look good among the founders who are slow with this. 
  • Maintain Accuracy: Double-check all certificate information to avoid errors that could inconvenience your investors.
  • Keep Copies: Retain copies of all SEIS3 certificates issued for your records.

By efficiently managing the issuance of the SEIS3 certificate, you can ensure that your investors receive their tax relief promptly, reinforcing their trust in you and your startup.

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