Venture capital schemes: apply for advance assurance

Find out if your company or social enterprises' proposed investment could qualify, so your investors can claim tax relief.


There are 4 venture capital schemes:

Before offering an investment opportunity you can ask HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) if this investment might qualify for the scheme you want to use. This is called advanced assurance and can help you secure funding by showing potential investors they may be able to claim tax relief.

HMRC’s advice will be based on the information you’ve given and you’ll need to make separate applications for each proposal that you want advance assurance for.

Who can apply

You can apply if you’re:

  • the company secretary
  • a director

You can also authorise an agent to apply on your behalf.

How to apply for EIS and SEIS advance assurance

You can apply using form EIS-SEIS(AA).

You will need to include EIS information or SEIS information with your application.

We recommend you include a copy of the register of members at the date you apply for advance assurance.

For EIS, you should explain how the growth and development condition will be met.

How to apply for SITR advance assurance

There’s no application form, you should contact HMRC by:

You’ll need to include the following information:

  • the certificate of incorporation of your company or charity
  • the memorandum and articles of association of your company or the equivalent governing documents of your charity, such as a trust deed
  • a summary describing the investment and how it will be used
  • a copy of any loan agreement you’re using
  • a signed letter from one of your directors or trustees if you’re allowing an agent to act on your behalf
  • any other supporting documents

How to apply for funding from VCTs advance assurance

There’s no application form, you should contact HMRC by:

If you’ve already chosen a particular VCT you must supply the details of any subscription or agreement to be entered into with them. You must also include other additional information.

You should explain how the growth and development condition will be met.

Postal applications

You should send it to:

Small Company Enterprise Centre
(Admin team)
Mid-size Business S0777
NE98 1ZZ

What happens next

HMRC will contact you.

If your application is approved

We’ll send you a statement you can show to your investors saying the investment is likely to qualify. This may include a reminder that you need to continue to meet the qualifying conditions for a specific period of time.

If you decide to go ahead with your proposal you still need to complete a formal application for approval called a compliance statement. You don’t need to raise the full amount of investment you included in your advanced assurance.

If your application isn’t approved

We’ll tell you why and it’s up to you if you want to change your proposal. If you decide to go ahead without making changes your investors won’t be able to claim tax relief.

Published 8 November 2016