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What kind of Irish companies can apply for R&D Tax Credits?

Think R&D Tax Credits is just for techie conglomerates and science labs? Think again! Just about any company in any industry is eligible for R&D Tax Credits easily worth thousands of euros.

Barrie Dowsett

Chief Executive Officer


7 minute read

Heard of R&D Tax Credits but don’t think your company or project is eligible? You may have thought that only companies working in sciency or techie industries like robotics or pharmaceuticals can apply. You’d be wrong.

Many businesses don’t realise that they are undertaking eligible qualifying activities that could attract lucrative R&D Tax Credits. It is not uncommon for their accountants to forget to tell them, or even to advise them incorrectly that they don’t qualify.

The fact is, if your technical lead (the R&D manager, lead engineer, or lead developer) is struggling to overcome the technical challenges of your project - if they are scratching their head wondering how to proceed, or losing sleep worrying about the technical uncertainties they face - your project will almost certainly qualify for R&D Tax Credits. And with as much as €37.50 in every €100 of eligible costs reclaimable, can your company afford to miss out?

R&D Tax Credits is a significant cash incentive from Revenue

Despite the fact that research and development (R&D) Tax Credits have been offered in Ireland since the early 2000s, far too many companies are still not claiming their full entitlement. This can be for all sorts of reasons, but with average claims sitting at around €55,000 it’s a huge cash injection to leave behind.

The guidelines for R&D Tax Credits published by Revenue don’t impose any restriction on the type of work your company does, but instead, they explain what sort of activities qualify. That means that if your company is working on advancements in any field of science or technology you may be eligible for R&D Tax Credits.

Technical uncertainties

In order to qualify for R&D Tax Credits, you need to show that your company’s team of experienced professionals is working on a project that involves tackling a scientific or technological uncertainty. Typically this occurs when a member of the technical team has one of those head-scratching moments or a sleepless night thinking about how to overcome a technical challenge. It’s also important that at the start of the project your intention is to make an overall scientific or technological advance, and not just an advance in your company’s knowledge. However, it doesn’t matter which industry you actually work in – any company based in Ireland can apply.

Examples of projects qualifying for R&D Tax Credits

If your company undertakes any of the following activities, you will most likely be eligible for R&D Tax Credits. Bear in mind though, this is far from an exhaustive list.

Manufacturing and Engineering

  • Designing and developing cost-effective and innovative operational processes;
  • Integrating new materials to improve product performance and manufacturing processes;
  • Evaluating and determining the most efficient flow of material;
  • Developing processes that would meet increasing regulatory requirements;
  • Streamlining manufacturing processes through automation;
  • Innovative product development using computer-aided design tools;
  • Development of second generation or improved products;
  • Designing, constructing, and testing product prototypes;
  • Tooling and equipment fixture design and development;
  • Developing unique computer numerical control programs;
  • Designing innovative programmable logic controllers;
  • Designing innovative manufacturing equipment design;
  • Prototyping and three-dimensional solid modelling.


  • Tools to extend the functionality of application software programs or of an operating system;
  • Extensions to database software, programming languages, or operating systems;
  • Software development tools, such as tools to port data across platforms, tools for image processing or character recognition;
  • Novel data management techniques, such as new object representations and new data structures;
  • Innovative methods of capturing, transmitting, manipulating, and protecting data;
  • Software to run new computer hardware;
  • Software to run on devices with pre-installed operating systems, such as handheld GPS, mobile phones, and tablets;
  • Means of integrating hardware and software platforms.

What are R&D Tax Credits?

R&D Tax Credits are offered as an incentive to promote innovation across the Irish economy, and various schemes are on offer. The best way to make sure you apply to the right scheme and maximise your company’s claim is to work with a specialist adviser.

Thousands of businesses - large, medium and small - have already received generous R&D Tax Credits directly from Revenue. What’s more, your company could receive cash relief for projects worked on from as long as two years ago – right up until its next corporation tax payment is due. And loss-making companies can claim too.

There’s plenty of information about R&D Tax Credits - including eligibility and how to claim - on our R&D Tax Credits page.

Why use Myriad Associates?

The R&D Tax Credits scheme is extremely generous but actually claiming the award is far from easy. Rules are updated regularly and with every R&D project unique it’s hard to know what costs can be included and which can’t. So even if you’ve claimed successfully before, over-claiming or under-claiming are still very real possibilities. And let’s face it, the last thing you need is a Revenue audit.

When you use a specialist R&D claims consultancy like Myriad Associates, we will put together a well-structured, accurate R&D Tax Credits claim on your behalf. This means you can rest assured that not only will your claim stand the best chance of success, but that it’s maximised too.

At Myriad, our flexible pricing means our fees are only due once your claim has been successful, with nothing to pay up front. We’re also proud of our many 5 star client reviews on Google, as well as our close working relationship with Revenue.

If you would like to find out whether your project is eligible for R&D Tax Credits, or get the ball rolling on a claim, why not call our expert team on +353 1 566 2001. Alternatively, you can send us a message using our contact form and we'll call you back.

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