The first revised SR&ED Claim Form in two years has just been issued, and is required for claims filed after December 31st 2015. The changes to Part 2 are:
(1) The reference to ‘standard practice’ has been removed from the question on Uncertainty (line 242). This doesn’t, though, indicate a policy change - distinguishing claimed work from ‘routine development’ is still key to a successful claim.
(2) In the question on Advancement(line 246), “what did you achieve” is now qualified by “or attempt to achieve”, restoring previous policy.
Other modifications to CRA’s technical information requirements are apparent only from the extended discussions in the revised guide to the form, T4088-15. There is some re-wording of explanations, intended as clarifications, that may indicate what CRA is currently looking for. Most notably, in the explanations for lines 242 (Uncertainty) and 246 (Advancement), the familiar “technology base” has been replaced by “technological knowledge base”. There is also reference to generation of new knowledge as “important to describe”. It is clear that advancement of knowledge must now be treated as not only a requirement for scientific research, ITA 248 (a) and (b), but also for (c), experimental development.
The information to be provided re Work Done (Line 244) now specifically includes descriptions of “the hypotheses designed to reduce or eliminate the uncertainties”.
In the definition of ‘SR&ED Project’, eligibility is no longer to be determined at the “highest possible level” but at “the level necessary to properly recognise . . “
On a positive note - “Appendix 1 is not an exhaustive list of all eligible fields of science or technology.” This first appeared in 2014 and is still there.