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Do we need original client signatures or are scanned ones acceptable?

Do we need to get the client's signatures approving accounts/tax returns by normal post or is it alright to be scanned and emailed back to us? 


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24th Jan 2013 10:12

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24th Jan 2013 10:25


basically all you need is their approval in a provable form, at least i do

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24th Jan 2013 10:51

HMRC don't even insist on anything provable

carnmores wrote:

basically all you need is their approval in a provable form, at least i do

but obviously the above advice is better and I go by that.
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24th Jan 2013 10:47


... is the recent thread.

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24th Jan 2013 12:09


How do you put a link to a previous thread? I have always wanted to know.

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By Old Greying Accountant
24th Jan 2013 13:22

Like this

type something, then highlight it holding left click, left click the icon that has a blue disk with a "link" below it (which is around the middle of the tool bar) and paste the web address in to the URL box that pops open.

Personally, I prefer cutting and pasting the url in to the thread as it is more obvious.


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24th Jan 2013 14:08

Obvious = Bold

Old Greying Accountant wrote:

Personally, I prefer cutting and pasting the url in to the thread as it is more obvious.

That is why the first thing that most of us do when we have highlighted the typed description is to left click on the 'B' icon in the toolbar to embolden it before clicking on the Link icon.

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24th Jan 2013 13:26

Quicker and easier

And it's quicker and easier

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25th Jan 2013 12:35

The URL is enough

as the Aweb system will recognise it and turn it into a hyperlink.

OGA's highlighting technique is the slightly more advanced approach that we use within the community and editorial teams - it's more readable and looks a bit nicer, and as he suggested, using bold can make a link stand out more prominently - like this: Here's where to find the previous email signature question.

To return to your original query, several members have already commented that you can use email to document authorisation to file rather than signatures, and HMRC's IRMark has been devised to help you do this. I've just posted the following in a comment on the other thread (link points at the specific comment which you can find by right-clicking the heading and choosing "copy link location" or equvialent):

Charles Verrier, who leads our document management discussion group, commented in last year's Automating the tax workload article: “You don't need the signed pages - an email is fine. While there are ways of faking them, the practical reality is that emails are accepted by (Civil) courts every day of the week.

The IR Mark issued by HMRC is based on an algorithm calculated from the data contained in the version of the return that clients approve, he explained.  “As the mark changes when any of the return's content changes, you can use this to show that your filing was identical to the copy that the client saw and approved.” Using the the IR Mark number as the identifying reference is good practice, particularly if several versions have gone to and fro.

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