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R&D Eligibility: What Qualifies for R&D Tax Credit Claims?

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R&D Eligibility

OK, so in this short article, we will cover the eligibility for an R&D tax claim and also some of the nuances surrounding them.

Let’s assume you have been taking steps to improve your business by investing in developing new products and processes. Despite this work, we reason you’re not quite sure if you may have the basis for a successful R&D tax credit claim.

So, let’s cut to the chase.

It is important to understand the work you have been doing. The scope of the work is important too.  E.g. what challenges you have faced throughout the process, and indeed if there were any.

HMRC is increasing investigations into spurious claims. It is therefore important that any claim is correct. Any potential R&D claim has to be prepared properly.  It also needs to be able to stand up to the scrutiny of a tax inspector should it be necessary.

It is important to pinpoint the exact areas where R&D has taken place.

You see it’s not just a case of simply spending money to improve your business. Perhaps a more accurate way to describe it is the way you go about doing so specific to your industry.

With any R&D, you are trying to develop something new. Something tangible, a tangible step-forward; an advance no-less.

As we have touched upon already, HMRC is taking a much closer look at claims filed. If a claim is found to be fraudulent any money paid to a company in error is recoverable by HMRC.

Interestingly, some of the recent changes introduced by the UK Government in 2022 signal some welcome adjustments in the incentive such as the ability to claim for data purchases which historically have been outside the scope of what is allowed in R&D claims.

When claiming R&D it is critical to isolate the dates, the times, the advance sought and the process undertaken.

But what if you haven’t kept accurate logs of the information required? Well, there are certain processes trusted and accepted by HMRC that our experts adhere to.  So, if you are not sure if you have an R&D tax claim, protect yourself and your business by talking to one of our experts.

All too often businesses feel that they must have dedicated research laboratories to qualify for R&D and this isn’t the case.

Many businesses, just like yours may not realize that what they consider mundane, day-to-day work might form the basis for an eligible R&D claim but it is important to quantify what the claim looks like.

“So how do we do that?”, we hear you ask…

Well, is the advance you sought after more a scientific advance or one that has used technology in a new way? This is quite a broad statement however, it is also full of grey areas that will take a specialist to identify:

A) if you may have the basis for a claim and

B) what if any costs may be recoverable.

If it is found that a claim could be possible, then you can recover money spent by your company in the following areas:

R&D Eligibility | Eligible R&D Costs

  • Staff Costs (Salaries)
  • Staff costs (NI contributions)
  • Pension contributions
  • Subcontractor costs
  • Software costs
  • Consumables (Materials and Utilities)

As you can see, the scope of what can be recovered subject to qualifying R&D activities taking place can be quite broad.  With an average claim for most SMEs being valued at around £45,000 then you can see they are worthwhile. It is important your claim will stand up to scrutiny by HMRC and will be a worthwhile endeavor.

The R&D incentive is one of the best ways for a small business to support its own growth. Any award received by HMRC is often re-invested in new business development activities.  This is then most often reinvested in developing new products and services.

As the scope of what can be recovered are broad, so too are the rules surrounding this specific area of tax law.

There are many rules and regulations a company must adhere to.  It’s important not to fall foul of the rules surrounding the incentive.

Hamilton Wood and Company have a long and proud history of supporting businesses across the UK.  We deliver safe and robust R&D tax credit claims. Our specialists have a combined experience of over 50 years in preparing and filing R&D claims.

Established all the way back in 2017, we have grown to become one of the UK’s most trusted and recognized names in R&D.

Our R&D consultants have a track record of delivering substantially more for businesses like yours.

Furthermore, we provide ongoing support for two years after a claim is filed. Our team of experts has your back at all times to ensure you can get on with doing what you do best, running your company.

Claiming R&D tax relief can be a great way to add a significant boost to your company’s bottom line.

Our experts minimize your time involved in any R&D tax claims process to just a couple of hours over a four to eight-week process. We deliver safe and robust R&D claims for our customers and are happy to provide testimonials from our many happy clients.

We have the skills and expertise to help businesses from any sector recover significant sums from their past business improvement projects.

If you would like to safely claim R&D tax credits, then get in touch with one of our team today or learn more about our award-winning R&D tax credit claims service by clicking this link.

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