Abuse of the R&D tax credits scheme

Abuse of the R&D tax credits scheme

An article published in The Times this weekend has highlighted the rising issue of fraudulent and questionable R&D tax credit claims.

This is a problem which has been well recognised within the industry for some time, but now The Times has shone a light on what they call “a scheme plagued by waste”.

The R&D tax credit scheme was set up to provide incentives for genuine research and development efforts from innovative businesses, to help fuel growth.

However, according to The Times article, there have been millions handed out for questionable “innovations” such as a launderette offering lower temperature washes on its machines and a pub adding vegan and gluten-free options to its menus.

There are even videos on YouTube of advisors encouraging companies to make use of the scheme as a way to get “free money”.

While we view this as a welcome move to expose such unethical practices – and hope that it will expedite the removal of rogue advisors - we hope that this is not to the expense of genuine claims. With the UK government currently looking to tighten its belt, this kind of negative publicity may call the scheme into question once again and end up doing more harm than good for genuine claimants.

Leonid works with a number of R&D consultancies, all of whom work to the highest ethical standards, to help incentivise innovation across the UK and Europe.  We always do our due diligence and would never choose to work with any firm which did not uphold such standards.