What you need to keep when applying for R&D tax credits



What you need to keep when applying for R&D tax credits

To make your company more viable and ensure that your claim for R&D relief is accepted, you’ll need evidence to support the proposal that you have put forward. With plenty of areas accountable, it can be difficult to know where to begin and what documents you should keep and monitor.

In truth, it’s fairly simple. Ultimately, all your evidence needs to show is that innovations you made were planned R&D work and not just a coincidence. After all, that is what the scheme is in place for. The government want companies to take risks and encourage innovation in a range of areas.

HMRC is clear in stating that the records that you should keep will vary depending on your project. Each project is different. You can make things easier by keeping track of your records and here are some areas that should be considered for the majority of claims:

Set up a time sheet

To work out how much money you’re owed in terms of staffing costs, you need to be able to show how much time you and your employees have spent on the project. A time sheet should conclusively show the amount of time spent by each employee on R&D activity. This allows you to make easy calculations. If you set these up at the start of the project, you will save yourself a lot of time and stress in the long run.

External collaboration

A lot of companies innovating have to at some point use an external agency for a range of reasons. The costs associated with these are also viable for R&D relief so documents showing their involvement is vital. Keep track of their costs, whether they were an external agency or temporary staff and how long they spent.


If do lots of trailing during your research and development or build lots of prototypes, try to record the cost of materials used for these tasks separately.


What projects have you been working on? Keep a list of all the projects, different departments involves and the different types of research and development you are involved in e.g. new product development and improving processes or services.

Expert help in R&D tax claims

Having all of the above would help to show in detail why your claim should be accepted. If you wish to discuss your company’s R&D expenditure, claims and the R&D tax credits that may be available to you, contact R&T Consultants on 01858 445 522 or email enquiries@rt-consultants.co.uk.


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