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HMRC internal manual

Compliance Operational Guidance

Supporting guidance: employer compliance guidance by subject: tax certificate CIS5 or CIS5 (partner)

For details of the different types of Tax Certificates see COG909530.

There were two methods by which a company holding a CIS5 certificate or partnership holding a CIS5(Partner) could satisfy a contractor that they held a valid certificate

  • the certificate method, and
  • the certifying document method - COG909560.

The Certificate Method

Before the first payment was made the contractor had to

  • see the original certificate - not a copy
  • check that the certificate was in date
  • identify the presenter of the certificate

    • if there was any doubt, the contractor should have telephoned the subcontracting company to verify the presenter’s credentials.

Where the contractor was satisfied with the result of the above checks, the subcontractor could be paid without deduction.

On or before making the first payment to the subcontractor the contractor had to make a note of

  • the name and address of the company or partnership
  • the number of the certificate
  • the expiry date of the certificate.

Payments could continue to be made gross to the subcontractor without further inspection of the CIS5 or CIS5(Partner) certificate provided that

  • the certificate had not expired
  • there was no reason to doubt that the certificate was still valid
  • there was no reason to doubt that the payments were being made to a genuine representative of the company (CIS5) or the nominated partner (CIS5(Partner)).

On making a payment the contractor had to

  • make a note of the amount of the gross payment (including the cost of materials, travelling and subsistence, but excluding VAT)
  • complete and sign a CIS23 voucher. See COG909570.