Why is HMRC taking so long to process R&D claims?

If you are are preparing R&D claims for clients, or simply have clients who are making R&D claims, you cannot have missed the fact that HMRC's processing of claims (for all but the largest companies) has all but ground to a halt. HMRC provides a weekly update on its progress with R&D claims, so let's [...]

By |July 24th, 2019|HMRC, R&D|

Growing SMEs – beware an unintended trap

R&D tax relief is a very valuable tax relief for innovative UK companies. Many companies are successfully claiming relief each year – latest government statistics show that 25,300 companies made R&D tax relief claims in 2015/16 – although many more are clearly still missing out. Of those 25,300 companies that claimed relief in 2015/16, over [...]

By |September 25th, 2017|HMRC, R&D|

Why does GDS find it so difficult to get things right on Gov.UK?

GDS - the Government Digital Service, which is responsible for keeping Gov.UK updated - has recently posted updates to HMRC's CIRD Manual. All very boring, except for the fact that GDS seems to be struggling to actually get the update right. On the evening of 16 May an update was made to the pages covering [...]

By |May 18th, 2016|Government, HMRC, R&D|

HMRC (Finally) Updates its State Aid R&D Guidance

Almost two years after first circulating a draft of the proposed new guidance on State Aid issues for SME R&D claims, HMRC has finally published that guidance. The new version of CIRD81670 was published yesterday and includes commentary on De Minimis Aid as well as links to EU guidance on State Aid matters. Having links [...]

By |May 17th, 2016|HMRC, R&D|

Enhancements to the R&D Advance Assurance application process – HMRC moves closer to being digitally advanced

I blogged back in November 2015 about how far HMRC still had to go to become truly digital. One of my concerns was the application process for the R&D Advance Assurance scheme - the form was to be completed online, then printed and posted to HMRC! Well, good news, HMRC has taken a small step [...]

By |March 21st, 2016|HMRC, R&D|

Tax transparency, taxpayer confidentiality and is it now time to make HMRC a Ministerial department?

We have a longstanding principle of taxpayer confidentiality in the UK. My tax affairs are confidential between HMRC and me. The essential effect of this principle is that my financial affairs are my business and (subject to my duty to disclose income to HMRC for the purposes of paying tax on it) mine alone. HMRC [...]

By |February 25th, 2016|Anti Avoidance, Government, HMRC|

Quarterly tax returns: bureaucracy or “simplification”?

Thanks to fellow tweeter @goodall4 for pointing me towards this gem. In a Written Answer to a question from Jim Shannon (a DUP MP), David Gauke (Financial Secretary to the Treasury) stated that the new digital tax accounts to be introduced by HRMC would be: simple, secure and personalised Now, I can well believe that [...]

By |January 12th, 2016|Government, HMRC|

HMRC has a long way to go in order to be “digitally advanced”

One part of HMRC's settlement in the recent Spending Review involves the following rather grand sounding target (taken from the department's press release): That sounds very impressive - HMRC is to become "one of the most digitally advanced" tax administrations in the world - almost sends a chill up my spine! And all of this [...]

By |November 26th, 2015|Government, HMRC|

HMRC is about to launch its R&D Advance Assurance scheme – at last

As I discussed in this earlier post, HMRC announced on 28 October that it would be launching an Advance Assurance scheme for small businesses making their first R&D claim. Actually, the scheme was first announced by George Osborne in his 2014 Autumn Statement and included in the consultation document “Improving access to R&D tax credits [...]

By |November 24th, 2015|HMRC, R&D|

HMRC’s problem may be poor leadership

Since the merger of the old Inland Revenue and HM Customs & Excise in 2005 to form HMRC, headcount in the merged department has fallen steadily from circa 95,000¹ (FTE) to 58,883² in September 2015. Of course, some reduction in headcount was inevitable, indeed desirable, if only from the synergies of merging the two former [...]

By |November 12th, 2015|HMRC|