February 2017 special edition - Alerts to taxpayers to take care in their R&D claims

Two taxpayer alerts on the R&D Tax Incentive have been released by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science (the department) and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO).

The taxpayer alerts are targeted at companies in the building and construction sector, and at companies of all sectors that are incorrectly claiming ordinary business activities under the program, and their tax advisers.

Companies and their tax advisors are encouraged to review their registrations and claims to ensure that:

  • Their registered activities fit within the requirements of the laws that govern the R&D Tax Incentive
  • Expenditure claimed relates to eligible R&D activities and is not specifically excluded from calculations for the R&D Tax Incentive
  • Adequate records have been maintained and appropriate levels of governance have been applied to the R&D activities and expenditure claims.

The department and the ATO have developed a range of materials to support companies and their advisors to use the program correctly. Refer to our Sector guidance for updated sector guides and specific issues guidance documents. Built Environment and Getting building and construction R&D Tax Incentive claims right publications should be read with the taxpayer alerts.

If you think our concerns apply to you, the taxpayer alerts provide options for companies to seek clarification about their claims including calling the ATO or the department, seeking independent advice, making a voluntary disclosure to the ATO or applying to amend or withdraw their registration with the department.

More information

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