R&D tax credits HMRC Questions

How long does HMRC take to review a claim?

HMRC sets a 28-day target for SME research and development tax credit claims. However, the timespan for a review is dependent on a number of factors, including company size, account complexity, time of year, and the individual nature of your claim.

The primary factor is the size of your company, and whether it is classified as an SME, or a large company.

SMEs can generally expect their R&D tax credit application to be reviewed and paid within 28 days, but you should always allow for delays. If your claim is made during national holidays, it can take longer. Peak periods for accounting - March, September and December - can also take longer. Other elements such as PAYE, VAT and corporate tax affairs are also accessed as part of the R&D tax credit claim, so complexity can lead to delays. It is therefore recommended to make your claim 6 to 8 weeks before you will need the money in your account, so that your innovation strategy is not impacted if there are delays.

R&D tax credit claims for large companies do take longer because these will form part of Corporate Tax returns which are more complex. The amount of time can vary massively from case to case. Therefore, it is best to discuss your individual case with an R&D tax credits expert who will be able to provide you with an estimate on the length of time the review of your claim will take.

What process will my application go through when it goes to HMRC?

Once F.Initiatives has submitted your claim for you, your filed claim will go to HMRC's own specialist R&D tax credit claim assessment unit where an inspector will review it in detail. If the R&D tax credit claim is clear and well prepared, then HMRC will often accept it quickly, meaning that you can receive your funds in a timely fashion (at any time from 2 to 8 weeks later depending on internal factors and workloads at HMRC). However, if the HMRC inspector identifies an error or issue or finds that the claim is missing necessary information, then they will ask questions to gather the necessary information. Naturally, this will slow down the process. In the vast majority of cases where further information needs to be provided or existing information clarified, the process is designed to reassure both the claimant and the HMRC inspector that the claim is correct and ready for processing. A full enquiry is only likely to occur if deliberate and significant fraud has occurred, which is rare. However, you should always make sure that your claim is well prepared to minimise the chances of this happening.

Where the claim has been submitted by an R&D advisor, the advisor will have ensured that the claim has already gone through a robust internal fact-checking and quality assurance procedure to minimise questions. The advisor will also be on hand to support with any further enquiry that might occur in order to get to the point of successful R&D tax credit payment.

If HMRC launches an R&D tax credit application enquiry, what will the outcome tend to be?

After your application has been submitted, HMRC may request further information from you. This is standard practice, and occurs in the vast majority of cases. A well thought out and well put together claim will typically pass HMRC inspection with few or no questions, and mean that you will receive your money once any questions are answered. However, if your application is found to contain discrepancies, HMRC may launch an enquiry into your claim. The major risk of the enquiry process is that your claim can be lessened or even rejected and - in some instances – financial penalties can be imposed.

If your application is subjected to an enquiry, it can suggest that any R&D tax credit application claims in future may require better record keeping. At F.Initiatives, our team of R&D tax credit professionals ensure that your application is thoroughly prepared and we submit it on your behalf to make the process as smooth and simple as possible.

How does F.Initiatives help to minimise enquiries from HMRC?

Although an enquiry doesn't necessarily mean that you won't receive the full amount of R&D tax credits that you have applied for, it can delay payment and lead to broader investigations. Additionally, most enquiries can be easily avoided with thorough preparation.

For these reasons, every claim that F.Initiatives submits on a client's behalf goes through a best-practice Quality Control and assurance process, which includes an initial review by our own in-house inspection team. This ensures that your claim is strongly prepared, accurate, unlikely to go to enquiry, and able to withstand an enquiry if it does occur.

Can HMRC withhold repayment of R&D tax credits?

Yes, they can – and will - do this until they are completely satisfied with every element of your claim, including the figures submitted, the technical narrative of your R&D projects and accompanying methodology. If HMRC has any queries about the way your claim has been prepared or its nature, they may make an enquiry and pause on repayment until they have satisfied themselves of your claim and reviewed the additional information you have been asked to provide. There can also be instances where an enquiry will be opened by HMRC after your R&D tax credit claim has been paid. In this case, there is a risk that you will have to repay a portion, or all, of this sum when the enquiry process has been concluded. If you seek the support of F Initiatives from the beginning of the process, we will help you put together a claim that is less likely to trigger an enquiry, either during the application phase or retrospectively.

Can HMRC charge a penalty if I submit an incorrect claim?

If an error is found in a research and development (R&D) tax credit claim, HMRC can charge a penalty. The size of the penalty will rest on how well the claim is deemed to have been prepared, and with what degree of due care and attention. If HMRC finds that reasonable care has been made with the claim, then any penalty may be nullified.

However, if HMRC finds that information was concealed intentionally or false information was knowingly given, then it can impose a penalty which equates to 100 percent of the lost tax. To reduce this penalty, the business must act fast to be forthcoming with requested information and cooperative. Companies may also be asked to rectify the underlying reason for claims errors, such as to better internal record-keeping with a review date set by HMRC. A sound methodology can instantly prove to HMRC that you have taken the necessary due care and attention with your claim. If HMRC raises any issues, it is advisable to suggest or agree to a meeting in person to discuss them - when you are responsive and open, the outcome tends to be better.

How should I supply my information to HMRC?

A R&D tax claim must be made alongside your CT600 or Corporation Tax return. HMRC doesn't define a standardised format for the supporting information you will provide to apply for R&D tax credits, but they do define the type of information they like to see to support a claim. This should include details of the R&D being carried out and its associated qualifying expenditure.

You'll need to enter the R&D tax incentive calculation onto your Corporation Tax return and provide documentation that supports the figures provided. This can include information about your R&D expenditure when categorised, details of the calculation methodology used for your research and development tax credit claim and the records used to prepare the calculation. Additional summary information of costs and a rationale for the definition of your qualifying project is also valued. Remember that this document is the business's opportunity to show HMRC that it has given sufficient care and attention to the preparation of its R&D tax credit claim.

R&D Tax Credits Advisors. R&D Tax Credits Experts.

 

Terms of use

  1. Initiatives, a registered trademark of F. Initiatives Limited (“we”), are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy.


What’s in these terms?

These terms tell you the rules for using our website https://www.f-initiatives.co.uk/  (our site).

Who we are and how to contact us

https://www.f-initiatives.co.uk/ is a site operated by F. Initiatives Limited (“We”). We are registered in England and Wales under company number 09899833 and have our registered office at 10 John Street, London, United Kingdom, WC1N 2EB

To contact us, please email contact@f-initiatives.uk or telephone 0207 653 1921

By using our website, you accept these terms

By using our site, you confirm that you accept these terms of use and that you agree to comply with them.

If you do not agree to these terms, you must not use our site.

We recommend that you print a copy of these terms for future reference.

There are other terms that may apply to you

These terms of use refer our Privacy Policy which you can view here.

We may make changes to these terms and our site.

We amend these terms from time to time. Every time you wish to use our site, please check these terms to ensure you understand the terms that apply at that time.

We may update and change our site from time to time to reflect changes to our products, our users’ needs and our business priorities.

Our site is made available free of charge. We do not guarantee that our site, or any content on it, will always be available or be uninterrupted. We may suspend or withdraw or restrict the availability of all or any part of our site for business and operational reasons. We will try to give you reasonable notice of any suspension or withdrawal.

Our site is only for users in the UK

Our site is directed to people residing and companies operating in the United Kingdom. We do not represent that content available on or through our site is appropriate for use in other locations.

How you may use material on our site

We are the owner or the licensee of all intellectual property rights in our site, and in the material published on it. Those works are protected by copyright laws and treaties around the world. All such rights are reserved.

You may print off one copy, and may download extracts, of any page(s) from our site for your personal use and you may draw the attention of others within your organisation to content posted on our site.

You must not modify the paper or digital copies of any materials you have printed off or downloaded in any way, and you must not use any illustrations, photographs, video or audio sequences or any graphics separately from any accompanying text.

Our status as the authors of content on our site must always be acknowledged by ensuring that the words “Copyright ©F. Initiatives Limited” are clearly visible.

You must not use any part of the content on our site for commercial purposes without obtaining a licence to do so from us.

If you print off, copy or download any part of our site in breach of these terms of use, your right to use our site will cease immediately and you must, at our option, return or destroy any copies of the materials you have made.

Reliance on information on this site

The content on our site is provided for general information only. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. You should obtain professional or specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content on our site.

Although we make reasonable efforts to update the information on our site, we make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content on our site is accurate, complete or up to date.

We are not responsible for websites we link to

Where our site contains links to other sites and resources provided by third parties, these links are provided for your information only. Such links should not be interpreted as approval by us of those linked websites or information you may obtain from them.

We have no control over the contents of those sites or resources.

Our responsibility for loss or damage suffered by you

Whether you are a consumer or a business user:

  • We do not exclude or limit in any way our liability to you where it would be unlawful to do so. This includes liability for death or personal injury caused by our negligence or the negligence of our employees, agents or subcontractors and for fraud or fraudulent misrepresentation.

  • Different limitations and exclusions of liability will apply to liability arising as a result of the supply of any services to you, which will be set out in any agreement we enter into with you.


If you are a business user:

  • We exclude all implied conditions, warranties, representations or other terms that may apply to our site or any content on it.

  • We will not be liable to you for any loss or damage, whether in contract, tort (including negligence), breach of statutory duty, or otherwise, even if foreseeable, arising under or in connection with:

  • use of, or inability to use, our site; or

  • use of or reliance on any content displayed on our site.

  • In particular, we will not be liable for:

  • loss of profits, sales, business, or revenue;

  • business interruption;

  • loss of anticipated savings;

  • loss of business opportunity, goodwill or reputation; or

  • any indirect or consequential loss or damage.


If you are a consumer user:

  • Please note that we only provide our site for domestic and private use. You agree not to use our site for any commercial or business purposes, and we have no liability to you for any loss of profit, loss of business, business interruption, or loss of business opportunity.

  • If defective digital content that we have supplied, damages a device or digital content belonging to you and this is caused by our failure to use reasonable care and skill, we will either repair the damage or pay you compensation.


How we may use your personal information

We will only use your personal information as set out in our privacy policy (link to Privacy Policy page).

We are not responsible for viruses and you must not introduce them.

We do not guarantee that our site will be secure or free from bugs or viruses.

You are responsible for configuring your information technology, computer programmes and platform to access our site. You should use your own virus protection software.

You must not misuse our site by knowingly introducing viruses, trojans, worms, logic bombs or other material that is malicious or technologically harmful. You must not attempt to gain unauthorised access to our site, the server on which our site is stored or any server, computer or database connected to our site. You must not attack our site via a denial-of-service attack or a distributed denial-of service attack. By breaching this provision, you would commit a criminal offence under the Computer Misuse Act 1990. We will report any such breach to the relevant law enforcement authorities and we will co-operate with those authorities by disclosing your identity to them. In the event of such a breach, your right to use our site will cease immediately.

Rules about linking to our site

We are very happy for you to link to any of our pages whether directly or via backlinks or to make linkless mentions provided any such link or mention is fair and legal and does not damage our reputation or take advantage of it. We would also ask that any such links or mentions use the correct spelling of our name i.e. F. Initiatives.

You must not establish a link in such a way as to suggest any form of association, approval or endorsement on our part where none exists.

You must not establish a link to our site in any website that is not owned by you.

Our site must not be framed on any other site.

We reserve the right to withdraw these permissions without notice.

Which country’s laws apply to any disputes?

If you are a consumer, please note that these terms of use, their subject matter and their formation, are governed by English law. You and we both agree that the courts of England and Wales will have exclusive jurisdiction except that if you are a resident of Northern Ireland you may also bring proceedings in Northern Ireland, and if you are resident of Scotland, you may also bring proceedings in Scotland.

If you are a business, these terms of use, their subject matter and their formation (and any non-contractual disputes or claims) are governed by English law. We both agree to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales.

 


Privacy PolicyScope

This policy applies to F. Initiatives and My R&D Claim™ which are both trading names of F. Initiatives Ltd, a company registered in England under number 09899833 whose registered office is at 10 John Street, London, United Kingdom, WC1N 2EB. The privacy policy explains how we use any personal information we collect about you when you use this website and our wider services.

What is personal data?

Personal data relates to any information about a natural person that makes you identifiable which may include (but is not limited to):

  • Names and contact information i.e. emails and telephone numbers

  • Employee numbers

  • Payroll and accounting data


What is sensitive personal data?

Sensitive personal data refers to the above but includes genetic data and biometric data.  For example:

  • Medical conditions

  • Religious or philosophical beliefs and political opinions

  • Racial or ethnic origin

  • Convictions

  • Biometric data (e.g. photo in an electronic passport)


What is a Data Controller?

For general data protection regulation purposes, the “data controller” means the person or organisation who decides the purposes for which and the way in which any personal data is processed.

The data controller is F. Initiatives Ltd, 10 John Street, London, United Kingdom, WC1N 2EB. The data protection officer is Solenne Desprez Braun, who can be contacted at F. Initiatives Ltd, Albert Buildings, 49 Queen Victoria Street, London, EC4N 4SA or on personaldata@f-initiatives.co.uk  or by calling 0207 653 1921.

Our Full Data Governance Policy can be found here.

What is a Data Processor?

A “data processor” is a person or organisation which processes personal data for the controller.

What is Data Processing?

Data processing is any operation or set of operations performed upon personal data, or sets of it, be it by automated systems or not. Examples of data processing explicitly listed in the text of the GDPR are: collection, recording, organising, structuring, storing, adapting, altering, retrieving, consulting, using, disclosing by transmission, disseminating or making available, aligning or combining, restricting, erasure or destruction.

What do we mean by Business to Business?

PLC, LTD, LLP incorporated partnerships, trusts and foundations, local authorities and government institutions.

What do we mean by Business to Consumer?

Private clients, sole traders, unincorporated partnerships, trusts and foundations.

What information do we collect about you and how?

  1. Initiatives Ltd, as a Data Controller, is bound by the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).


You agree that we are entitled to obtain, use and process the information you provide to us to enable us to discharge the Services (as defined in our Letter of Engagement and supporting Schedules) and for other related purposes including;

  • Maintaining client records to comply with customer due diligence requirements

  • Carrying out identity checks in relation to you

  • Statutory returns such as Company Tax Returns and Annual Accounts

  • Legal and regulatory compliance

  • Crime prevention.


We collect information about you when you fill in any of the forms on our website i.e. sending an enquiry, signing up for a service, signing up for an event, filling in a survey, giving feedback etc. Website usage information is collected using cookies.

When submitting forms on our website we use a third-party software provider for automated data collection and processing purposes, they will not use your data for any purposes and will only hold the data in line with our policy on data retention.

Cookies are text files put on your computer to collect standard internet log information and visitor behaviour information.  This information is then used to track visitor use of the website and to create statistical reports on website activity.  For more information visit www.aboutcookies.org or www.allaboutcookies.org.

You can set your browser not to accept cookies and the above websites tell you how to remove cookies from your browser.  Please note in a few cases some of our website features may not function because of this.

Analytics – e.g. how visitors use our website

We use Google Analytics to store information about how visitors use our website so that we may make improvements and give visitors a better user experience.

Google Analytics is a third-party information storage system that records information about the pages you visit, the length of time you were on specific pages and the website in general, how you arrived at the site and what you clicked on when you were there. These cookies do not store any personal information about you e.g. name, address etc. and we do not share the data. You can view their privacy policy below:

Google - http://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/privacy/

IP addresses

An IP or Internet Protocol Address is a unique numerical address assigned to a computer as it logs on to the internet. F. Initiatives Ltd do not have access to any personal identifiable information and we would never seek this information. Your IP address is logged when visiting our site, but our analytic software only uses this information to track how many visitors we have from particular regions.

Internet Based Advertising

We use Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter advertising services and as such there are tracking codes installed on our website so that we can manage the effectiveness of these campaigns.  We do not store any personal data within this type of tracking.

How will we use the information about you and why?

At F. Initiatives Ltd we take your privacy seriously and will only use your personal information to provide the Services you have requested from us, detailed in your Letter of Engagement and supporting Schedules and as we have identified above.  We will only use this information subject to your instructions, data protection law and our duty of confidentiality.

For Business to Business Clients and Contacts our lawful reason for processing your personal information will be “legitimate interests”.  Under “legitimate interests” we can process your personal information if: we have a genuine and legitimate reason and we are not harming any of your rights and interests.

For Business to Consumer Clients and Contacts our lawful reason for processing your personal information will be “A contract with the individual” e.g. to supply goods and services you have requested, or to fulfil obligations under an employment contract.  This also includes steps taken at your request before entering into a contract.

We may receive personal data from you for the purposes of our money laundering checks, such as a copy of your passport.  This data will only be processed for the purposes of preventing money laundering and terrorist financing, or as otherwise permitted by law or with your express consent.

Our work for you may require us to pass your information to our third-party service providers, agents, subcontractors and other associated organisations for the purposes of completing tasks and providing the Services to you on our behalf.  However, when we use third party service providers, we disclose only the personal information that is necessary to deliver the Services and we have contracts in place that requires them to keep your information secure and not to use it for their own direct marketing purposes.

We collect information on our website to process your enquiry, deal with your event registration, give advice based on survey data and improve our services.  If you agree, we will also use this information to share updates with you about our services which we believe may be of interest to you.

We will not share your information for marketing purposes with companies so that they may offer you their products and services.

Transferring your information outside of Europe

As part of the services offered to you through this website, the information which you give to us may be transferred to countries outside the European Union (“EU”). For example, some of our third-party providers may be located outside of the EU.  Where this is the case we will take steps to make sure the right security measures are taken so that your privacy rights continue to be protected as outlined in this policy.  By submitting your personal data, you’re agreeing to this transfer, storing or processing.  Where our third-party supplies are in the US we have ensured that their services fall under the “Privacy Shield” whereby participating companies are deemed to have adequate protection and therefore facilitate the transfer of information from the EU to the US.

If you use our services while you are outside the EU, your information may be transferred outside the EU to give you those services.

Security precautions in place about data collected

When you give us personal information, we take steps to make sure that it’s treated securely. Any sensitive information (such as credit or debit card details) is encrypted and protected with the following software 128 Bit encryption on SSL. When you are on a secure page, a lock icon will appear on the bottom of web browsers such as Microsoft Internet Explorer.

Non-sensitive details (your email address etc.) are sent normally over the Internet, and this can never be guaranteed to be 100% secure. As a result, while we strive to protect your personal information, we cannot guarantee the security of any information you transmit to us, and you do so at your own risk. Once we receive your information, we make our best effort to ensure its security on our systems. Where we have given (or where you have chosen) a password which enables you to access certain parts of our websites, you are responsible for keeping this password confidential. We ask you not to share your password with anyone.

Profiling

We may analyse your personal information to create a profile of your interests and preferences so that we can contact you with information relevant to you. We may make use of extra information about you when it is available from external sources to help us do this effectively. We may also use your personal information to detect and cut fraud and credit risk.

Marketing

We would like to send you information about our services which may be of interest to you.  If you have consented to receive marketing, you may opt out at any point as set out below.

You have a right at any time to stop us from contacting you for marketing purposes.  To opt out please email: contact@f-initiatives.co.uk.

How long will we hold your data for?

  • Marketing: We will hold your data for a period of 6 years with a review every 3 years.  You will have the opportunity to opt out or update or delete data at any point should you need to do so and details are set out in this policy as to how to do that.

  • Contracted Services: We will hold your data for 7 years in line with our regulatory requirements.


Access to your information, correction, portability and deletion

What is a Subject Access Request?

This is your right to request a copy of the information that we hold about you.  If you would like a copy of some or all your personal information, please email or write to us at the following address: Antoine Abbatucci, Managing Director - UK, F. Initiatives Ltd, Albert Buildings, 49 Queen Victoria Street, London, EC4N 4SA. We will respond to your request within one month of receipt of the request.

We want to make sure your personal information is accurate and up to date.  You may ask us to correct or remove information you think is inaccurate by emailing contact@f-initiatives.co.uk or writing to the above address.

Objections to processing of personal data

It is your right to lodge an objection to the processing of your personal data if you feel the “ground relating to your particular situation” apply.  The only reasons we will be able to deny your request is if we can show compelling legitimate grounds for the processing, which override your interest, rights and freedoms, or the processing is for the establishment, exercise or defence of a legal claims.

Data Portability

It is also your right to receive the personal data which you have given to us, in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format and have the right to transmit that data to another controller without delay from the current controller if:

(a)    The processing is based on consent or on a contract, and

(b)    The processing is carried out by automated means.

Your Right to be Forgotten

Should you wish for us to completely delete all information that we hold about you:

  • Email: contact@f-initiatives.co.uk or

  • In Writing to: Antoine Abbatucci, Managing Director - UK, F. Initiatives Ltd, Albert Buildings, 49 Queen Victoria Street, London, EC4N 4SA.


Other websites

Our website contains links to other websites.  This privacy policy only applies to this website so when you link to other websites you should read their own privacy policies.

Complaints

If you feel that your personal data has been processed in a way that does not meet the GDPR, you have a specific right to lodge a complaint with the relevant supervisory authority.   The supervisory authority will then tell you of the progress and outcome of your complaint.  The supervisory authority in the UK is the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Changes to our Privacy Policy

We keep our privacy policy under regular review and we will place any updates on this web page.  This privacy policy was last updated on 03 January 2019 and the Version number is 1.2 in line with the new GDPR guidelines.

How to contact us

Please contact us if you have any questions about our privacy policy or information we hold about you:

  • By email: contact@f-initiatives.co.uk

  • Or write to us: Antoine Abbatucci, Managing Director - UK, F. Initiatives Ltd, Albert Buildings, 49 Queen Victoria Street, London, EC4N 4SA.


 

BY USING THIS WEBSITE, YOU ACCEPT THE TERMS OF THIS PRIVACY POLICY. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO THIS PRIVACY POLICY OR ANY OF ITS TERMS YOU SHOULD NOT USE THE WEBSITE AND SHOULD CEASE TO ACCESS THE WEBSITE IMMEDIATELY.