R&D tax relief for SMEs is so generous that it is considered to be a Notified State Aid by the European Commission.


The problem is that much of the financial support brought in by the Government for businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic is also considered to be Notified State Aid. This includes CBLS, CLBILS and the BBLS.


Unfortunately, the rules prevent the use of more than one form of Notified State Aid on the same project, even if they’re used at different times, and even if the money is paid back.


This could mean that if you’ve been claiming SME R&D tax relief, you won’t be allowed to use CBILS/BBLS finance to support any project that has received this tax relief. Or, if you haven’t claimed SME R&D tax relief yet, any project that you support using the loans won’t be eligible for the tax relief, either now or at any point in the future.


There is a solution.  If you keep any loan funding well away from your SME R&D projects, then your R&D claim should be safe.


Please get in touch if you need any further advice or email Jack Spoor who heads up our R&D service: jspoor@robson-laidler.co.uk