6 Misguided Notions About R&D Tax Credits

R&D Tax Credit


small business

Deborah Roth, CPA
June 18, 2023

Discover the potential of the Research and Development tax credit for boosting cash flow, slashing Federal income tax rates, and securing dollar-for-dollar reductions in Federal and State income taxes. Businesses of all types may even offset up to $500,000 in payroll tax liability for qualifying activities.

Yet numerous misconceptions surround the R&D tax credit, hindering businesses from seizing its benefits. Uncover the truth behind the six most prevalent myths.

Myth: The R&D Tax Credit is Exclusive to High-Revenue Businesses.

A prevailing misconception surrounds the R&D tax credit, leading many to believe it solely favors high-revenue businesses. Contrary to this notion, even businesses with a revenue of less than $5 million in the current year can claim this valuable credit. Let's debunk the myth and empower smaller enterprises to explore this financial opportunity.

Myth: Start-Ups Don't Qualify for R&D Tax Credit

The R&D tax credit is well within reach for start-ups and small businesses alike. Even if your business has generated revenue for five years or less, you can still be eligible for this credit. Meeting the additional qualifying criteria, which include having $5 million or less in revenue in the current year and engaging in qualifying research activities, opens the door to claiming this valuable benefit. Don't miss out on the opportunity to bolster your business with the R&D tax credit.

Myth: The Tax Credit is Applicable to Businesses Conducting Scientific Research

Claiming the R&D tax credit does not necessitate conducting scientific research exclusively. Numerous qualifying activities open the door to this credit, encompassing a broad spectrum of endeavors. From streamlining and enhancing internal manufacturing processes to devising tools or fixtures, incorporating cutting-edge equipment, creating financial pricing models, constructing data centers, integrating APIs, and various other pursuits, all hold the potential for R&D tax credit eligibility. The possibilities are vast, ensuring that businesses can reap the benefits without being confined to traditional scientific research alone.

Myth: Qualified Research Activity Implies Creating New Products Only

Contrary to the misconception, qualifying for the R&D tax credit does not hinge solely on creating new products. In fact, the scope of eligible activities is far broader. Enhancing an existing product, refining a process, or perfecting a formula can all qualify as qualified research activities, making them eligible for the R&D tax credit. The key lies in recognizing the diversity of endeavors that can potentially unlock these tax benefits, extending beyond just new product development. Embrace the opportunity to claim credit by exploring a wider range of innovation-driven pursuits.

Myth: Only Businesses Engaged in Research Activities Can Claim Credit.

The R&D tax credit is universally applicable across all industries, provided that the business engages in qualified research activities.

Myth: The R&D Tax Credit is Exclusive to the Preceding Tax Year

A key advantage of the R&D tax credit is its ability to be claimed for tax years dating back 3 to 4 years.

How We Can Offer Help

We assess your business for federal and state R&D tax credit opportunities. Our expert team helps you save money, enhance cash flow, and reduce income taxes, driving overall growth.

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Common Challenges When Claiming R&D Tax Credits

Although claiming this credit can offer considerable benefits for companies engaged in R&D efforts, the process can be challenging.

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No Profits, No Problem: R&D Tax Credits Can Help Your Startup

Running a startup is all about innovation and making the most of your resources. But what if you're not yet turning a profit?

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What Happens to Unused R&D Tax Credits?

What happens if you don’t use all your credits in a single year? Don’t worry! The US tax code has you covered.

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