What does a qualifying R&D Tax Credit project look like?

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In this short video, we provide an insight into the elements of what makes up a qualifying claim for R&D tax credit purposes.

Often companies are unsure of what a successful claim might look like so here we summarise key characteristics (not exhaustive) including:

  • having an idea for a new product, process or service or for an appreciable improvement on what’s already available out there in the marketplace;
  • putting together a project plan;
  • exploring what might be technically feasible with your peers (competent professionals);
  • going beyond routine or commonly accepted knowledge to achieve your technical goals;
  • establishing that there is technical uncertainty inherent in your project
  • the ups and the downs of a typical qualifying project (the ‘downs’ or road-blocks often helping establish that the project goes beyond routine knowledge into the realms of technical uncertainty);
  • the need to invest time and money – as ‘eureka’ moments won’t qualify nor would there be attributable cost to enhance under the relief in such a case;
  • that the project does not have to succeed to qualify for R&D tax relief (aborted projects qualify; in fact they often provide some of the best evidence of technically uncertain and challenging work!).

No single qualifying R&D tax project is ever the same but these are some of the common attributes that might help you think about whether you have been undertaking project work that might qualify under this generous UK government tax relief.