A two-year plan aims to increase the use of research and development tax relief by raising awareness among small businesses and making it easier for them to claim.
HMRC have launched the plan in response to a consultation which identified four themes – awareness, design, understanding and assurance – that were the key factors influencing access to the relief.
Under the first phase of the plan, HMRC will:
- Undertake a publicity campaign to raise awareness of advance assurance among small businesses and under-represented sectors;
- Provide certainty by leaving the definition of research and development as it is instead of aligning it with the accounting definition as had been mooted; and
- Issue improved guidance on the interaction of the relief and grant schemes.