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Submitting a R&D tax credits claim

We know R&D tax credits are important to you and you can’t afford delays in the repayment due to enquiries from HMRC. That’s why you need to engage an adviser you can trust. We're here to fully support your business with preparing and claiming R&D tax credits.


Rather than waiting until your company is ready to submit the tax return, you must tell HMRC if you plan to claim R&D tax relief or expenditure credit for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 April 2023 if:

  • you’re claiming for the first time
  • you’ve not submitted a claim in the past 2 ½ years from the end of the current accounting period 

If you need to notify HMRC about your intention to make an R&D claim, this must be done within six months of the accounting period end. Failure to do so will result in any subsequent claim submission being rejected. 

The notification form will require an overview of the R&D work undertaken, meaning it would be sensible to have a high-level view of the R&D claim for the accounting period.

What is the process to claim R&D tax credits?

What is the research and development process?

  1. The first step to any claim is to identify the eligible activities - The R&D tax credit rules are complex and many businesses struggle to correctly identify the boundaries of the eligible work, either missing out on the benefit or wrongly including activity. Our experts will talk you through the complex rules in your language, help identify what’s eligible, and will test the assessment to ensure everyone is comfortable with the claim.
  2. The next step is to pull the claim together and create a report for HMRC – Depending on the level of support you require, our specialists can produce the report for you or assist with reviewing the documentation created by your internal team. When producing the claim, we’ll be open and transparent with the claim documentation, ensuring you understand what is being included. 
  3. The final step is to submit the claim to HMRC - We can work with the Buzzacott tax team or your tax advisor to submit the claim.
Online additional information form

Online additional information form

Claimants are required to submit a formal ‘Additional Information’ form prior to submitting any R&D claim via a corporation tax return. This form specifies what information relating to the R&D projects, the costs involved, and the workers involved in claim that HMRC want to see to process any claim. HMRC is asking for a further split of costs by project, including the qualifying indirect and direct costs attributable to each eligible project. This form will then require the claimant to submit all projects up to three or those covering over 50% of the claim when more projects are being submitted. For businesses with a large number of projects, there is a limit of 10 projects. The company needs to provide sufficient evidence to HMRC that the R&D projects claimed are eligible under the scheme. This form can take time and effort to prepare and we are assisting many clients in ensuring their submissions are meeting the needs of HMRC.

What happens after the application has been submitted?

What happens after the application has been submitted?

The R&D claim must be submitted electronically to HMRC with your tax return. Once HMRC receive the claim, it is passed for processing. If issues are identified at this point, the claim will be passed onto specialist inspectors for a detailed review, which can result in an enquiry. If the claim is considered reasonable, the credit will typically be paid out within 40 days. 

We know exactly what HMRC requires. By working with HMRC on complex claims and staying up to date with HMRC policy, we understand the information it needs and, more importantly, why. With our support, you can be sure to share exactly the right details to satisfy HMRC’s requirements and minimise the risk of an enquiry from HMRC.

Compliance checks

HMRC have ramped up the number of claims subject to a check to ensure that the claim is accurate. These checks can happen before the claim is paid out or after payment is made up to the statutory enquiry window. If issues are found and the claim has been overstated, HMRC will request that any overpayment is returned. At the current time, HMRC is reviewing 20% of claims and therefore most businesses can expect to see a compliance check in the next couple of years. 

We can provide a claim check service to identify your risk, or we support you with reviewing your current claim.

How we can help

How we can help you maximise the available R&D tax credits

Buzzacott’s R&D team are dedicated specialists who solely work on R&D claims. Our team has backgrounds in engineering, science and policy, allowing us to thoroughly understand the eligible work undertaken by your business. 

Making a successful claim takes a nose for detail. When you work with our dedicated team of R&D tax credit consultants, you can count on that. 

Many advisers offer extensive contracts with high fees that make you second guess whether it’s worth claiming in the first place. We can provide you with advice tailored specifically to your requirements, saving you from paying for any extra unnecessary costs. As a regulated firm, we provide advice that you can trust.

We can also provide you with a joined-up service with our tax and accountancy teams who have in-depth knowledge of tax legislation in the UK. We’re also members of PrimeGlobal which, should there be an international element to your claim, gives us access to trusted overseas tax experts who can help ensure that your claim provides the benefit expected.

Get in touch

If you would like to speak to one of our R&D experts to find out more about how we can help, please get in touch via the form below or call +44 (0)20 7710 3330.

Get in touch
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