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Set Up Your CertCapture Company

This article applies to:Avalara CertCapture

Before you start using CertCapture, you’ll need to set up your company profile so it matches how you do business. If other team members will be helping you use CertCapture, create user accounts for each of them.

1. Log in

Sign in to your CertCapture account. 
  1. Go to CertCapture.
  2. In the User Name text box, type the email address that you used to establish your account.
  3. In the Password text box, type your password, and then click Log In.


2. Configure company details


This article applies to:Avalara CertCapture

Review and edit your company details and CertCapture settings.

If you have multiple companies in your account, select a company from the Company drop-down below the CertCapture logo before you change anything.

Company details and settings

Select Settings > Company Settings > Company Details to see your company details and settings. See below for details on the options available in each tab of this section.

  1. Company Information tab
    Logo, AvaTax IDs, contact information, general preferences
  2. Company Settings tab
    Certificate preferences 
  3. Retail Settings tab
    CertCapture for Retail processing preferences
  4. CertExpress and CertExpress Public
    Preferences for receiving certificates with CertExpress and CertExpress Public
  5. Retail Purchaser Settings tab
    Information required from CertCapture for Retail customers
  6. eCommerce Settings tab
    For installing CertCapture for eCommerce

Company Information

Select Edit Company Information to review and edit details such as your company logo, AvaTax IDs, contact information, and general preferences.

Field Description
Company Logo Upload an image to represent your organization.
AvaTax Account ID The Account ID of the associated AvaTax account. Only present after you link your CertCapture and AvaTax accounts. You cannot edit the AvaTax Account ID.
AvaTax Company ID The Company ID of the associated AvaTax account. Only present after you link your CertCapture and AvaTax accounts.
Name Name of the sub-entity that appears in the top right corner of the page. Does not have to match the Legal Name of the entity.
Legal Name The legal name of the entity. Legal name is used to populate fields for W-8/W-9 forms.
Address (including City, State, Country, and Zip) Address associated with the sub-entity. This address is used as a contact address, return address, and response address throughout the application.
FEIN The Federal Employer Identification Number for the active sub-entity.
Phone The customer point of contact.
Fax This field is not open for editing. Your company's fax number was created by CertCapture and assigned to your company for inbound faxes. Faxes go directly to your Stacks in Manage Documents > Validate Documents.
Corporate Emails The Support By Email address at the bottom of the online submission tool contains the corporate email address. This field is also used to populate the FROM_EMAIL template tag if used in a request cover letter. To designate the From address on outbound CertCapture messages.
Notification Emails CertCapture sends notification emails to this email address.
Account Lead This field isn't open for editing. This is the Avalara employee assigned to the account.
Equipment Description Brief description of the business activity of the sub-entity. Depending on the form type.
Default Bucket Buckets are headers that organize incoming certificates. The default is External.
Generated Customer Number Prefix When you generate a customer anywhere in CertCapture, a prefix is added to the customer number. For example, if you have "cc" as the prefix and enter the number 123, it will be saved as "cc123".
Type-ahead Minimum Search Length Auto-searches won't initiate until a minimum character count is typed into the search box.
Affidavit Expiration The duration of temporary exempt status for customer records with active affidavit forms.

Company Settings

Select Edit Company Settings to adjust how documents are handled during the validation process.

Field Description
Require Tax IDs in Data Entry You must enter a Tax ID when adding data to an exemption certificate.
Use Document Percentages Tracks certificates that exempt only a percentage of a tax rate.
Use Barcodes Applies a unique barcode stamp to the bottom of newly created compliance forms.
Apply Customer Exposure Zones Only Removes any exposure zones not associated with the customer account when adding information to an exemption certificate. Helps avoid accidentally applying incorrect states to a customer.
Use Exposure Zone Description The name of the exposure zone is replaced with a description of the exposure. This is helpful when working with exposure zones with generic or uninformative names.
Set Default Requested Return Date Allows the use of a future date as the default Requested Return Date for campaigns. Turning this on helps standardize the duration of a campaign.
Populate Customer Email in Validate Documents When validating a document, your customer's email address is automatically added to the Validation Fax / Email Updates field.
Product Exemption Categories Enables you to create your own product categories for certificates you receive (for example, Party Supplies). After you create a category, you add the tax codes associated with it.

Retail Settings

Select Edit Retail Settings to adjust settings specific to CertCapture for Retail.

Field Description
Show Pending Certs Status appears as Pending if a customer's document is waiting to be processed in data entry.
Show Customers Without Certs Customers missing documents appear in searches in CertCapture for Retail.
Submit to Data Entry Submitted certificates appear in data entry. When disabled, certificates are automatically deemed valid upon submission.
Append Barcode A barcode is stamped at the bottom of all certificates created in CertCapture for Retail.
Append Certificate ID A certificate ID is stamped at the bottom of all certificates created in CertCapture for Retail.
Disable Upload Disables document upload for CertCapture for Retail.
Print/Preview Document Customers can print and Preview documents.

CertExpress Settings

Select Edit CertExpress Settings to adjust your preferences for documents received via CertExpress and CertExpress Public.

The preferences under Setting always appear, but extra preferences appear when you activate CertExpress Public:

  • CertExpress Only preferences, which affect CertExpress activity.
  • CertExpress Public Only preferences, which only affect CertExpress Public activity. 


Field Description
Upload Certificate Only Disables CertExpress's guided document completion. Certificates must be uploaded.
Disable Upload from Fillable Forms Disables the ability to upload a file when responding to a request in CertExpress.
Append Barcode A barcode is added to the document.
Show Certificate Ids Enables your customer to see the Certificate ID number after a certificate is complete.
Append Certificate ID Stamps a certificate ID at the bottom of certificates created.
Upload Only If Fillable Form is Not Available Enables your customer to upload forms manually that are not fillable, such as a request or an affidavit.

CertExpress Only

Field Description
Days to Allow Account Access to CertExpress The number of days CertExpress access is available to customers responding to your document requests.
Edit Purchaser Information Allow customers to edit the Please Provide Your Contact Information field in CertCapture.
Submit to Stack When a certificate is submitted by a customer, it appears in the Validate Documents page. When disabled, certificates are validated and attached to the customer without requiring validation.
Customer List A list of Bill To and Ship To customers is added to PDFs created online.
Send Certificate Completion Client Notifications CertCapture sends an email to the customer to confirm receipt of a document.
Disable Customer Adding Any Form Disables the customer's ability to choose additional documents to for submission.
Purge Customer Data on Completion When a user completes a form via CertExpress, the data they enter is temporarily stored so that they don't have to refill fields if they come back to make changes. Enable this setting if you don't want to store that temporary data.

CertExpress Public Only

Field Description
Allow Imports on CertExpress Public Allow customers to import multiple certificates at once using your CertExpress Public URL.


Retail Purchaser Settings

Select Edit Retail Purchaser Settings to specify the fields that your customers are required to enter as they upload certificates, and designate optional fields.

eCommerce Settings

Select Manage eCommerce Account to set the CertCapture for eCommerce credentials you'll use if you install CertCapture for eCommerce.

3. Add users

You can add as many users to your CertCapture account as you want. Assign each user a role that suits the kind of work they'll use CertCapture to do. When assigning roles, remember that they're listed from lowest access to highest access.

Add a user

  1. Go to Settings > Account Settings > Manage Users.
  2. The Users screen shows each of your account's current users, including username, name, email, role, and status. To add a new user, click the Add User button.
  3.  In Add User Information dialog box, enter login and contact details for the new user. Then assign the user to a role. For a new user, leave the status set to active. When finished, click Add User Account

Assign a user

  1. Go to Settings > Account Settings > Manage Users.
  2. The Users page shows each of your account's users, including login, name, email, role, and status. To grant or remove access to specific companies in your company hierarchy, click Assign Companies in the Actions column.
  3. Click the checkbox next to each company you want to assign the user to, and then choose role from the drop-down menu. When finished, click the Update Company Assignments button.

4. Change nexus

Nexus is the connection or relationship a business has with a taxing jurisdiction in which it sells products and services. This connection obligates the business to calculate, collect, report, and remit taxes. State and local authorities have varying definitions as to what constitutes nexus and who is liable for collecting and remitting sales and use taxes in their jurisdictions. Rules governing what constitutes nexus vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. 

Part of the CertCapture account setup process is telling CertCapture where you're registered to collect and remit tax. You should store an exemption certificate to cover every exempt customer transaction. Knowing where you have nexus helps CertCapture alert you when certificates are missing in jurisdictions where you're registered.

To determine your exposure to audit penalties, CertCapture compares where you have nexus to where you have exemption certificates. So check your records, and be sure to configure CertCapture's nexus setting to reflect each jurisdiction where you're registered to collect taxes.

  1. Go to Content Library > Nexus Settings.
    • If you set up more than one company in your Company Hierarchy, you should configure nexus for each company.
  2. On the Edit Nexus page, choose a Location, and then click the Assign Nexus button.
  3. In the Edit Client Nexus dialog, place checks in exposure zone boxes where you have nexus. When finished, click Update Client Nexus.


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