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It could be, if you haven’t considered your company’s possible eligibility for Research and Development (R&D) Tax Relief.
It’s possible that you haven’t considered R&D Tax Relief for your company because you thought your company’s area of activity didn’t qualify. You may have thought that only companies working in industries that are explicitly scientific, such as robotics or pharmaceuticals, can apply. You’d be wrong.
The guidelines for research and development tax relief published by the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS) don’t impose any restriction on the type of work your company does, but instead they explain what sort of activities qualify. That means that if your company is working on advancements in any field of science or technology you may be eligible for R&D Tax Relief.
In order to qualify for R&D Tax Relief you need to show that your company’s team of experienced professionals is working on a project that involves tackling a scientific or technological uncertainty. Typically this occurs when a member of the technical team has one of those head-scratching moments or a sleepless night thinking how to overcome a technical challenge. It’s also important that at the start of the project your intention is to make an overall scientific or technological advance, and not just an advance in your company’s knowledge. However, there is no restriction on the industry in which you work.
Examples of Projects Qualifying for R&D Tax Relief
If your company undertakes any of the following activities, you will most likely be eligible for R&D Tax Relief:
R&D Tax Relief is offered as an incentive to promote innovation across the economy, and various schemes are on offer. In particular, the rates of relief are different for large companies (in general, those with more than 500 employees) and for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). The best way to make sure you apply to the right scheme and maximise your company’s claim is to work with a specialist adviser.
Thousands of businesses – large, medium and small – have already received generous R&D tax credits directly from HMRC. What’s more, your company could receive cash credits for projects worked on from as long as two years ago – right up until its next corporation tax payment is due. And loss-making companies can claim too.