HMRC recently released its annual statistics about the R&D Tax Credits scheme. Benjamin Craig, Associate Director at Ayming UK shares his thoughts on what the statistics are telling us this year.
“Generally, it looks like R&D Tax Credit claims seem to have recovered from a dip in the 2020-21 financial year, which was due to Covid. However, they have not quite returned to the level of growth, which we had seen in the previous few years.
This could potentially be down to the impact of increased claim scrutiny by HMRC, although the notes on the statistics don’t make it clear how many claims, or what value of claims, have been made and rejected. The number of ‘first time claimants’ has reduced slightly over the last three years and remains at around 19,000.
All of the figures are for the 2021-2022 financial year and are therefore prior to the rate-changes that took effect from April 2023; we’re keen to see what effect those will have on the scheme when next year’s figures come out.
It will also be interesting to see what happens when the ONS publishes its Business Enterprise Research and Development (BERD) survey in November 2023, following the changes to the methodology of that survey.
Ben’s conclusion is that this year’s numbers are “broadly in line with previous trends, with no big surprises. But the real test will be seeing what effect the changes to the schemes themselves which came into effect in April of this year, and the additional scrutiny, will have on these figures in the future. I suspect there will be some significant changes to the numbers.
By Ben Craig, Partner – Associate Director, at Ayming UK