A Guide to Formatting Invoices and Letterheads

Before you finalise the design of your company stationery and forms, you should ensure that they comply with the Companies Acts 1963 to 2009 and the Tax Acts.

Firstly the full company name should be displayed on all publications, notices, letters, cheques, invoices and orders. (However, Limited can be abbreviated to Ltd.) If a company trades under a separate business name, the full company name is still required, even if it is in the small print at the end of a document.

There are several additional requirements for different types of company documents.

Letters, Order Forms, Emails and Faxes

Letters and order forms, whether printed or sent electronically, must include the following:

  • The legal form the company
  • The place of registration of the company
  • The company’s registered number (not the tax registration number)
  • Registered office address
  • The names of directors and their nationality if not Irish. Initials can be used instead of forenames. Any former forenames and surnames should also be stated.

Other requirements:

  • If the company is exempt from using the word “limited”, the letterhead/order should state that it is a limited company
  • If the company is being wound up, this should be stated
  • If share capital is mentioned, it should be the called up share capital amount.

Remember the above must be included in emails also, so ensure you set up an appropriate email signature.

Invoices

The following details are required on your company’s invoices:

  • the date of issue of the invoice
  • a sequential unique invoice number
  • the company’s full name, address and VAT registration number
  • the full name and address of the customer
  • the quantity and nature of the goods supplied or the extent and nature of the services supplied
  • the date on which the goods or services were supplied
  • where payment in full, or by instalments, for goods or services is made before the completion of the supply, the date on which the payment on account was made should be stated if that date differs from the invoice date
  • the unit price (excluding VAT and before discounts ) for each product or service. If the supply of a particular service cannot be broken down into units, then, the total VAT-exclusive price for the specific service will be accepted as the unit price.
  • the invoice amount should be broken down by each VAT rate

There are additional requirements for intra-community supplies.

Websites

The requirements for websites are similar to those for letters, except they don’t include the requirement to show the directors names and nationalities. The following are required:

  • The legal form the company
  • The place of registration of the company
  • The company’s registered number (not the tax registration number)
  • Registered office address
  • If the company is exempt from using the word “limited”, the letterhead/order should state that it is a limited company
  • If the company is being wound up, this should be stated
  • If share capital is mentioned, it should be the called up share capital amount.

This information can be on any page of the website as long as it is readily accessible.

Additional requirements:

  • Your website should have a Privacy Statement
  • If you are selling to consumers online, be aware of the requirements of the E-Commerce regulations and Distance Selling regulations
  • If you sell electrical goods online, ensure that you comply with the WEEE regulations

Liquidation/Receivership

Where a company is being wound up, every invoice, order for goods, or business letter issued by or on behalf of the company should contain a statement that the company is being wound up. A similar requirement is required for companies in receivership.

One final consideration:wait until you have received the Certificate of Incorporation before you finalise your stationery. If your company name is too similar to another, it will be rejected.

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