SR&ED Claimant Expectations

When aware of SR&ED Claimant Expectations, it’s easier to prepare for the CRA.

Our current four-part series brings you highlights from the Claim Review Manual (CRM) for Research and Technology Advisors (RTAs). RTAs at the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) use the CRM when conducting SR&ED claim reviews. We’ll be showcasing key excerpts from the CRM, including dispute resolution procedures, what to expect from on-site visits, and more.

Last week, we looked at two dispute resolution procedures in the Claim Review Manual (CRM) for Research and Technology Advisors, noting that these procedures attempt to foster mutually respectful and professional interactions between RTAs and claimants.

For ease of reference, we have formatted the CRM into a single page, available here: Claim Review Manual for RTAs.

This week, we’re taking a closer look at the “rules” that guide these interactions by highlighting important sections from Appendix 11: Mutual Expectations between the Claimant and the RTA during an SR&ED Review. As stated in the CRM:

The SR&ED Review will be more effective and efficient when both parties are clear about what they can expect from each other. The Research and Technology Advisor (RTA) is expected to work with claimants, and the claimant is also expected to work with the RTA. It is important that, at the start of a review, the RTA explain to and discuss with the claimant these mutual expectations.1 [emphasis added]

SR&ED Reviews: What to Expect from the Claimant

The majority of what is expected from claimants has to do with advance preparation ahead of a claim review. Having the required information, documentation, and personnel at the ready can greatly assist in the effectiveness and efficiency of the review process:

Here is the full list of guidelines for claimants and involved company personnel heading into a review:

  • Comply with the SR&ED Program requirements;
  • Prepare for on-site visits by having requested information, evidence or personnel available;
  • Prepare for the possibility of an expanded or shortened review by the RTA as different issues arise during the review or the original ones are resolved;
  • Provide, as early as possible in the review process, information or evidence relevant to supporting their position;
  • Answer questions and address the issues identified by the RTA during the review;
  • Ensure that the people who are best able to explain the work done are available to be interviewed by the RTA, should other issues arise during the review process;
  • Ensure that documentation created during the execution of the SR&ED work claimed is available and organized for review by the RTA and that someone is available to explain the significance of the documentation;
  • Prepare to explain how the claim was put together and what supporting evidence was used in the preparation of the claim;
  • Focus on the review issues identified by the RTA and facts related to the work done in order to address these issues;
  • Provide complete responses to questions asked by the RTA, whether in writing or not, within a reasonable time frame;
  • Expedite the review by providing any information, on a timely basis, that supports the claim;
  • Address any concerns raised by the RTA with respect to the quality of project descriptions, claim organization or maintaining supporting evidence for future claims; and
  • Advise the RTA of any concerns as early as possible.2 [emphasis added]

SR&ED Reviews: What to Expect from the RTA

Similarly to what is expected from claimants, RTAs are also expected to prepare in advance for a review. However, given that RTAs represent the CRA, they are also expected to inform the claimant about the finer details of the SR&ED program, including documentation and eligibility requirements, rationales for decisions, etc.

Here is the full list of guidelines for claimants and involved company personnel heading into a review:

  • Explain the SR&ED program, its requirements, its services and policies to claimants who would like more information about the program, to encourage understanding of their entitlements and ensure compliance;
  • Identify, prior to the on-site visit, issues that they plan to address and their approach for addressing the issues;
  • Identify, prior to the on-site visit, what they need during the visit, whether it is information or supporting evidence to see or people to speak to, so that the claimant can be prepared for the review;
  • Identify, as early as possible, any new issues that arise during the review;
  • Identify ways to resolve review issues, such as questions to ask or supporting evidence to examine;
  • Provide an indication of any concerns that remain at the end of the on-site visit or, if unable to do so until the information gathered during the review is considered, indicate when they expect to be able to do so;
  • Give an explanation for decisions, with reasons, in writing, if any of the work is not considered to be SR&ED, or if any other decisions are unfavourable to the claimant. This will help to improve claimant’s understanding of program requirements and enable them to be better positioned to provide any factual information that had not been considered in the RTA’s decision;
  • Coordinate their review work, including information requests, with Financial Reviewers (FRs) to minimize the administrative burden, such as not repeatedly requesting the same information from the claimant;
  • Allow a claimant the opportunity to provide additional information or explanations in response to their decisions, and to respond to the claimant concerning this additional representation; and
  • Provide feedback, advice and guidance to claimants, as required, to explain any deficiencies in the documentation or project descriptions.3 [emphasis added]

Final Thoughts On Expectations from Claimants and RTAs

As we noted last week, claimants should familiarize themselves with the entirety of the CRM for RTAs. Knowing what is expected of you as a claimant and what you should expect from your RTA can make a huge difference in easing the SR&ED claim review process.

This article is based on archived CRA policy documents available at the date of publication. Please consult the CRA website for the most recent versions of these documents.

Want to prepare yourself for an SR&ED claim review? Sign up for the Comprehensive Guide to SR&ED today.

Show 3 footnotes

  1.  (2014). Mutual Expectations Between the Claimant and the RTA During an SR&ED Review. In Claim Review Manual for Research and Technology Advisors – ARCHIVED (Appendix 11). Retrieved April 15, 2015, from https://www.sreducation.ca/claim-review-manual-research-technology-advisors/
  2.  (2014). Mutual Expectations Between the Claimant and the RTA During an SR&ED Review. In Claim Review Manual for Research and Technology Advisors – ARCHIVED (Appendix 11). Retrieved April 15, 2015, from https://www.sreducation.ca/claim-review-manual-research-technology-advisors/
  3.  (2014). Mutual Expectations Between the Claimant and the RTA During an SR&ED Review. In Claim Review Manual for Research and Technology Advisors – ARCHIVED (Appendix 11). Retrieved April 15, 2015, from https://www.sreducation.ca/claim-review-manual-research-technology-advisors/

0 Comments

Leave a Reply

error: This content is Copyright InGenuity Group Solutions Inc. Please contact the site administrator if you wish to use this content.
%d bloggers like this: