What Does the R&D Claim Process Involve?

What Does the R&D Claim Process Involve?

In 2000, the government introduced a scheme to incentivise businesses to carry out scientific and technological innovation. R&D tax credits were a Corporation Tax (CT) tax relief, helping reduce companies’ expenditure on R&D by claiming back tax for R&D investment.

R&D relief enables companies that carry out qualifying R&D related to their trade to claim an extra CT deduction for certain qualifying expenditures.

R&D relief enables companies that carry out qualifying R&D related to their trade to claim an extra CT deduction for certain qualifying expenditures.

Speak to us

If you have questions about your eligibility for R&D tax credit or how much they might be worth to your business, get in touch with our team.

  • For companies dealing directly with HMRC, there is no official prescribed process for putting together an R&D tax relief claim. You may find that multiple R&D agencies and guidance sites recommend a different selection of process steps, looking something like this:

    1. Determine if your company is eligible
    2. Identify your qualifying R&D activities
    3. Calculate the amount of relief you’re entitled to
    4. Prepare your claim
    5. Submit your claim
    6. Await processing

    What’s wrong with this type of R&D claims guidance?

    For more than ten years, people used simple processes like these for their claims. But HMRC now want to know more about your claim: as the biggest research investor in the country, they want to be treated with respect and limit their funding to solid R&D projects likely to contribute to the wider economy, both in the UK and internationally.

    With HMRC taking a closer look at R&D tax claims and enquiries on the rise in 2023, these simple process outlines have become severely outdated and fail to address major concerns and queries that HMRC needs a clear answer for.

    In addition, these surface-level guidelines provide no real guidance on what should be documented in a claim, the level of detail HMRC requires, key questions to answer, and what tests may be needed to qualify projects or activities.

    The reality is that companies that tackle R&D tax relief claims process with only surface-level attention to detail increase their risk of enquiry and claim rejection, along with the associated penalties.

    The GRDF: A robust, HMRC-compliant guideline for the industry

    Based on years of experience dealing with R&D tax relief claims and HMRC enquiries, Grantica has published what we believe to be the first ever published HMRC-compliant guideline for R&D tax credit claims – the Grantica Research & Development FrameworkTM (GRDF). This 8-step process represents a more comprehensive guideline for R&D tax relief claims, helping the industry move away from the outdated 4-5 step processes that no longer serve claimants.

    Developed by an expert team of R&D engineers and tax advisors, the GRDF provides a robust formula for handling R&D tax relief claims with HMRC, providing claim assessors with the answers and substance they are looking for to validate the value of your claim. Following the GRDF, the likelihood of successful R&D tax claims is significantly increased – our team has achieved a 100% success rate.

    To ensure these guidelines stay up-to-date with HMRC requirements and regulations, Grantica is currently working with industry experts and leading universities to ensure the framework serves as a live document, with wider input from the industry and the UK’s top financial and legal talent.

    As a result, we can say with confidence that the GRDF follows the most up-to-date standards and enables our clients to pre-emptively answer every question HMRC is likely to ask. This represents a step-change in the way R&D tax relief claims are handled in the UK.

    By making the GRDF freely available in the public domain, for use by individual companies and R&D agents alike, Grantica hopes to develop a new standard of best practice for R&D tax claims that will help reduce uncertainty, increase R&D funding and drive innovation in the UK economy.

  • The GRDF outlines a robust approach to preparing a claim under the R&D Tax Relief scheme for submission to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). The process consists of 8 detailed steps, as follows:

    1. Gather Information on the Company
    2. Review Qualifying Projects and Industry Literature
    3. Assess Challenges and Uncertainties
    4. Narrow Down the Claim
    5. Tabulate the Results
    6. Incorporate References
    7. Certify the Report
    8. Approve for Submission

    How to claim R&D tax credits using the GRDF

    There are two options for applying the GRDF to your company or client’s tax relief claim.

    1. Do it yourself: Following GRDF guidelines, you can make your own claim more robust. Make use of our Guidelines on the Application of GRDF. Our team provides support/clarification if required. Contact us to enquire. (Estimated time commitment for your company: 3–4 weeks)
    2. Hire us: Hire our experienced team to compile and submit your claim on your behalf. You provide us with documentation, and we do the heavy lifting. Contact our team to book your 30-minute pre-qualification call. (Total time commitment for your company: approx. 5 hours)
  • When your company attempts to tackle it alone, the R&D claim process can be complicated and time-consuming, but with Grantica’s R&D engineering and tax experts in your corner, your business can streamline the process and guarantee you’re claiming the maximum tax relief you’re entitled to.

    When you contact Grantica about your R&D claim, the first step will be for one of our expert representatives to conduct a free claim pre-qualification with you and your team.

    Once we’re satisfied that your claim meets HMRC’s criteria for R&D tax relief, we’ll move on with our step-by-step process to get you the tax credits you’re entitled to. The Grantica team will handle most of the work, so your claim demands only approx. 5 hours of your time from start to finish.

    From your first meeting with Grantica to payment of your claim by HMRC, you can expect the claims process to follow these steps:

    Step 1: Pre-qualification with Grantica

    The first step in the Grantica claim process is for your company to meet with a representative from Grantica for a free pre-qualification meeting.

    This meeting lasts less than thirty minutes and offers a no-obligation assessment to determine whether your company meets the criteria for HMRC’s R&D scheme.

    If your company is deemed eligible, Grantica will produce a contract of work to be undertaken, which will agree on the terms between your company and Grantica.

    Step 2: Technical assessment and knowledge gathering for your claim

    Once the contract is agreed upon, the next step is for Grantica to meet with your company for a technical assessment meeting.

    This meeting is a collaborative process in which Grantica gathers information about the specific R&D projects your company has undertaken.

    This information will be used to assemble and process company documents to evidence the claim. Grantica will then produce a claim document, which includes an engineering report on the R&D undertaken and financial corroboration of all related expenditures.

    Step 3: Assuring claim compliance

    The compliance step in the Grantica claim process is an essential one. Grantica runs legal checks on all aspects of the claim document to ensure it is accurate and meets all current criteria set out by HMRC.

    If any issues are found, Grantica will work with your company to resolve them. Once the claim document meets all necessary criteria, it will be delivered to you for approval.

    Step 4: Claim submission

    After your company approves the claim document, it will be submitted to HMRC.

    Grantica will manage the submission process, ensuring that all necessary documentation is included and that your claim is submitted on time.

    Once your claim is submitted, Grantica will continue to monitor it and keep you updated on the claim’s progress.

    Step 5: Claim management

    If HMRC communicates with Grantica regarding the claim, Grantica will produce all necessary responses. This includes responding to any questions or concerns that HMRC may have about your claim.

    If an HMRC enquiry is initiated, Grantica will compile all the necessary responses and work with you to ensure that the enquiry is resolved as quickly and efficiently as possible.

    To date, we have never had a claim rejected by HMRC.

  • As part of our ongoing effort to ensure the GRDF remains a robust, comprehensive and up-to-date guide for R&D tax claims, we welcome contributions from professionals in all relevant fields.

    Are you a claimant who has used the GRDF? We want to hear your feedback.

    Are you an R&D, tax or legal professional with expertise to contribute to GRDF guidelines? We welcome your input.

R&D Consultants in Your Corner

Grantica’s mission is to promote research and development in the UK with a secure strategy to help companies maximise their innovation funding claims. From the initial pre-qualification meeting to the final compliance check, we’re there at every step of the R&D claim process to provide our expert support and guidance.

The Grantica R&D Framework™

Request Your Download Today

Our team are on hand to support you with all of your innovation funding needs.

Your Application

Start Typing
Privacy Preferences

When you visit our website, it may store information through your browser from specific services, usually in the form of cookies. Here you can change your Privacy preferences. It is worth noting that blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience on our website and the services we are able to offer.

This site uses third party cookies. Click below to accept, or customise your preferences.