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UDIN - Unique Document Identification Number is mandatory for all Certificates issued by a CA

UDIN - Unique Document Identification Number is made mandatory for all Certificates issued by Chartered Accountant in Practice (CA) with effect from, 01/02/2019

Objective: The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) vide announcement dated 26/09/2018 has introduced the concept of UDIN i.e. Unique Document Identification Number to secure certificates/ documents attested/certified by practicing Chartered Accountants (CA). This is to be implemented in a phased manner with effect from 01/02/2019 as against the earlier announced date of January 1, 2019.

Understand UDIN formation: UDIN is 18 Digits “system generated” “unique number”. It is totally secure as it can be viewed only by the Member and/ or the Regulators / other Stakeholders who are having the UDIN. Secondly, it does not contain any information of the client.

UDIN comprises of:

First 2 Digits are YY – Last 2 digits of the Current Year (19 in this case)

Next 6 Digits are MMMMMM – ICAI’s Membership No. (123456 for example)

Next 10 Digits are BBMMMBBMMM – Alpha-numeric generated randomly by the system (ABCLDJ1479).

Applicability of UDIN: The ICAI has clarified that for the first phase of implementation, ‘Certificates’ also includes Reports issued in lieu of a certificate in terms of Guidance Note on Reports or Certificates for Special Purposes (Revised 2016). Further, it is also proposed to bring all other documents issued by Chartered Accountants like audit reports, limited review reports, etc. under the purview of UDIN, in due course.

Steps to follow:

a) Registration of CA: All Practicing CAs having full-time Certificate of Practice (CoP) require to register on the UDIN portal to generate UDIN. Details required are: 6 digit Membership Number, Date of Birth and Year of Enrolment. Accordingly, all partners / Proprietors (CA in practice) are required to be registered immediately, if not already registered.

b) Generation of UDIN: Provide the following information to generate UDIN on the UDIN portal:

1. Select the ‘Document Type’ from the drop down menu

2. Enter Date of ‘Signing Document’ i.e. the date of signing/ certifying the document.

3. Enter 2 financial figures i.e. any financial figures from the document such as turnover/net worth, etc. Then enter the ‘Description of the Figure’ i.e. Turnover/ Net Worth etc. to be filled in 10 to 50 characters

Note: 2 (two) relevant financial figures are compulsory out of 3 (three) given fields. In case, there is no financial figure in the Certificate, for example ESOP or corporate governance certificate, Zero (0) is to be mentioned in Financial Figure and in its Particulars mention “There is no Financial Figure in Certificate”.

4. Select ‘Document Description’ and enter the description/ details about the Certificate in 15 to 50 characters (required details of the document for which UDIN is generated).

5. Click the button ‘Send OTP’. After this, an OTP will be received on Registered Mobile and Email ID of the Member of ICAI.

6. Enter OTP as received and click ‘Preview’. In Preview, details entered for generating UDIN will be displayed. If there is any change/error in the content, click ‘Back’ button, or else, click ‘Submit’.

7. Thereafter, 18 Digit UDIN will be generated which needs to be mentioned on the Certificate.

Further, it should be noted that UDIN once generated cannot be edited. A preview option is available after entering all details for generating UDIN to verify its correctness before Generation i.e. details cannot be included in a draft mode, saved and submitted later.

c) Placement of UDIN: UDIN will be applicable for manual as well as digitally signed certificates / uploaded online. UDIN can be used for mentioning on the Certificate for which it has been generated, either writing by hand, printing as watermark or printing on certificate itself. In case of digitally signed / online certificates, UDIN is to be generated and retained for providing the same on being asked by any third party/ authority.

d) Revocation/ Cancellation of UDIN: Members should note that UDIN can be revoked by mentioning the reason. Further, there is no time limit for allowing revocation. If any user (Authorities/Regulators/Banks/Others) had searched that UDIN before revocation, an alert message will be sent about revocation of the UDIN. After revocation of the UDIN, anybody searches for that UDIN, appropriate narration indicated by Member with the date of revocation will be displayed for that revoked UDIN.

Revocation of UDIN may be required in following cases:

(a) UDIN obtained but certificate not issued for specific reason,

(b) UDIN obtained but certificate not issued within 15 days thereof, or

(c) UDIN obtained and certificate issued but rejected by authority or withdrawn by us for certain reason.

e) Important points to consider for Members:

1. Members must register on the UDIN portal, at the earliest

2. Members must ensure that each certificate issued on or after February 1, 2019 has a UDIN stated after the signature and Membership Number of the partner/proprietor.

3. Member should use the email address and phone number registered with ICAI. In case the email address is other than the official email, this should be changed to the official email address at the earliest by contacting the ICAI office.

4. Member should keep the screenshot of the UDIN generated for the certificate for future use.

5. UDIN is to be generated at the time of signing the Certificate.

6. No document is required to be uploaded on the UDIN Portal, for generating UDIN.

7. The authorities, regulators, banks or other stakeholders can search UDIN mentioned on certificate on their own through the search option on the Portal by providing few details.

f) Consequences of not generating a UDIN – UDIN generation is mandatory as per the Council Decision of ICAI, hence not generating UDIN for mandatory documents will amount to non-adherence of the Council Decision and may attract disciplinary proceedings as per the Second Schedule Part II of The Chartered Accountants Act, 1949.

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