Clinching is a mechanical joining technique which involves severe local plastic deformation of two or more sheet metal parts resulting in a permanent mechanical interlock or joint. The required forming load and energy can be determined with the aid of the finite element method. However, a good knowledge of the elasto-plastic properties is of utmost importance to perform a sufficiently accurate simulation. This paper presents two alternative material tests to identify the hardening behaviour of sheet metal beyond the point of maximum uniform elongation. In addition, the material tests were applied to DC05 and the identified material behaviour is evaluated through the prediction of the forming load during clinching.