How do I know if I do R&D and am I eligible?

If you are trying to improve existing or create new products, services, or processes and breaking technical ground in doing so, there is a good chance you are doing R&D.

This can come in many forms including:

  • development of a new unique software solution or tool that goes beyond what is currently available on the market

  • creating a more efficient process through development of new technology

  • developing a new product using a novel use of technical or scientific principles.

If you're still not sure if you’re undertaking R&D, please view our eligibility page or contact us via

You could be eligible to make an SME claim if your business is:

  • a UK registered trading company;

  • does not receive funding for its R&D activities (nor has the work being subcontracted to your business)*

  • meets the definition of an SME (see below)*

An SME is defined as a company having less than 500 employees and annual turnover under €100m or a gross assets of not more than €86m. It can be complex to determine whether a company is an SME as the wider group and investors also need to be considered.

If you are unsure whether you meet the definition, please contact us via

*Please note: You may be eligible to make a ‘Large Company’ R&D claim (also known as an R&D Expenditure Credit (RDEC) claim) if you do not meet the definition of an SME, you have received funding or the work has been subcontracted to you. You may still be able to use Nifty R&D to prepare your claim but we will need to discuss with you the differences between SME R&D claims and Large company R&D claims, and may need to discuss alternative fee arrangements

Remember: Nifty R&D operates on a not eligible, no fee basis so feel free to get started now.

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