R&D Tax Credits for Architects? But we don’t do any R&D…
One of the most common reactions that we hear from architects when we introduce them to the R&D tax relief scheme is ‘But we don’t do any R&D’. For many architects, R&D is just part of ‘business as usual’ and although they may be working on highly innovative solutions, and have heard of R&D tax credits, they don’t consider it as something that applies to them.
The low rate of architects claiming R&D tax credits may also be related to the fact that the
We have helped a number of practices successfully claim R&D tax relief, and we have a tried and tested process that maps the industry-standard RIBA stages onto the R&D Tax legislation. In this way, we are able to use the information that you track anyway to support the R&D tax claim.
What Is The Key To an R&D Claim for Architects?
The first stage in determining whether there is valid R&D for tax purposes being performed, is to assess which field of science or technology the claim falls under.
Architecture often combines multiple disciplines, where the design of a solution can incorporate social, environmental, political and aesthetic concerns as opportunities to build meaningful work. However, within the framework of the UK R&D Tax legislation, we help our clients focus on the architectural engineering and technology aspects.
One of the key criteria in quantifying any R&D tax claim is in determining where the resolution of technological uncertainty occurs. As the starting point, we have found in many of our architects’ claims that this occurs through the imposition of unique constraints around what would otherwise normally be a standard solution.
This is often the result of environmental factors affecting the desired solution, such as thermal performance, structural characteristics, or specific materials and may subsequently require new and appreciably improved processes or solutions that will in turn qualify for the R&D relief.
It is also important that no non-qualifying activities are included within the claim and this is something that can often be challenging, as these are rarely tracked separately within a project, and therefore when making a case to HMRC as to why the work qualifies, we will work with you to ensure that only the eligible activities have been accurately costed and included in the claim.
If your practice is a limited company or a partnership of limited companies, and are designing innovating or technically difficult architectural solutions, then you may be able to qualify. Contact Us now to see how. You can read our interview for the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists on page 12 of their magazine here