HMRC work strictly in the order they receive advance assurance applications. Chasing them or asking to jump the queue is a waste of time. You are in HMRC’s hands. If they are really busy, it just takes longer. So what can you do?
If you are about to make your advance assurance application (that investor is poised and ready to sign!) and need it back urgently:
- ensure your application is complete and that all the information HMRC need to grant the advance application is included. If they need to come back to you with questions, your application will be delayed.
- ensure your application is succinct and relevant. For new advance assurance applications, they are all sent to a central office, where they are allocated to the relevant team based on how complex they are. Our understanding is that there are less inspectors for the more complex applications, meaning they are likely to take longer. If your application is simple, make sure it is presented that way.
- if you are raising under SEIS in this round, get ahead of the game and take EIS into account at the same time.
(We can help with all these things, get in touch).
If you have submitted your advance assurance and are waiting patiently (or not so patiently) to hear back:
- ensure HMRC are authorised to contact you by email. If you are using an agent, HMRC will need to be given explicit consent to email them, their default is to use Royal Mail. Request that all communications regarding your application are sent by email. This could save a few days – and avoid the risk of lost post.
Is it essential to get an advance assurance? Read on