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What are the steps involved to claim the RDTI?

The R&D Tax Incentive (RDTI) is a tax credit, so it must be claimed through Inland Revenue in your income tax return. You’ll also need to file a separate R&D supplementary return. The process will be linked to your myIR account, so that it is easy to find and manage in one place. The process varies between the 2019/2020 income year and any later years. There is also a different claim process if you are eligible to be recognised as an RDTI Significant Performer. On this page you can learn about the claim process that is right for you.

How to claim the RDTI

How is the RDTI calculated?

The RDTI produces R&D tax credits at a rate of 15% for every dollar of eligible R&D expenditure.  You can use these R&D tax credits to reduce the amount of income tax you would otherwise have to pay.

R&D tax credits are used to calculate your residual income tax – this is the amount of income tax you pay for the year, less any other tax credits you may be entitled to.

To help you manage your income tax payment instalments, you can also choose to factor your anticipated R&D tax credits into your provisional tax calculations for the relevant income year.

For a more detailed explanation of how the RDTI is calculated, check out page 19 of IR's guidance.

Got a question?
Want to talk about your R&D activities and whether the RDTI might be right for you?
Contact an RDTI Customer Engagement Specialist

The steps to claim


Enrol for the RDTI

The first ‘enrolment’ step is to register your interest in the RDTI. Once you have enrolled you will have access to the 'Research and Development Tax Incentive' (RDTI) account in myIR and you can then complete the required RDTI application forms and returns. You can also ask the RDTI team to contact you if you need more information.

You only have to enrol for the RDTI once, not every year. Enrolment does not commit you to make an RDTI claim – you can enrol and then decide at a later date not to claim. If you have enrolled but don’t wish to claim for a particular year please contact Inland Revenue to update your account.

You can begin the enrolment process at any time. We recommend you enrol as early as possible so you're best placed to receive information about the RDTI scheme. If you enrol after the end of the income year, you will be contacted to discuss backdating your enrolment.

How to enrol:

Log in to myIR on IR's website: select 'RDTI enrolment'
Answer a few simple questions about your business and R&D
Enter your contact details. Request more information, if you need it
Click 'submit'
  1. You enrol for the RDTI through your myIR account on the IR website. Log in as normal. From the homepage in your myIR account go to ‘I want to’ and select ‘RDTI enrolment.’
  2. Answer a few simple questions about your business and your R&D. You'll be asked if you:
  • are a private sector business,
  • are likely to spend $50,000 on eligible R&D activities or use an approved research provider for the income year(s) you intend to claim the RDTI,
  • will perform the R&D activities in New Zealand,
  • will either own the results of the R&D activities or be able to use the results for free (this includes you, individually, or your corporate group, partnership or joint venture),
  • are controlled by any (or a combination of a) Crown research institute, district health board or tertiary education organisation.
  1. Provide your contact details and business industry classification (BIC) code. If you do not have your BIC code there’s an option to help you find it. You can also choose to be contacted if you’d like to receive further information – the RDTI team will be in touch within 10 business days.
  2. Review your details, then click “Submit.” Once enrolled, as the myIR account owner you will be able to access the RDTI account and delegate access to your staff or tax agent.
If you're a tax agent, you can enrol for the RDTI on behalf of a client in myIR. Go to the 'Tax preparer' tab, select 'Client registration' and then select 'Register client for R&D Tax Incentive' to complete the application.

Prepare your claim

The claim process for Year 1 of the RDTI scheme (the 2019/2020 income year) differs from the claim process and dates that apply for the following years (the 2020/2021 income year and beyond).

There is also a different claim process if you elect to be recognised as an RDTI ‘Significant Performer’ – these are approved businesses that spend above $2 million on eligible R&D per year.

Select from one of the options below to learn about the RDTI claim process that is right for you:

Summary of important RDTI filing dates

Income year
2019/2020 income year
2020/2021 income year
2021/2022 income year
Year ended*
31 March 2020
31 March 2021
31 March 2021
31 March 2022
31 March 2022
Approval / Return
Supplementary Return
General Approval
Supplementary Return
General Approval
Supplementary Return
Due date
30 April 2021
7 May 2021 (must be filed by the 7th day of the 2nd month following the end of your income year)
30 April 2022 (30 days after the due date of income tax return)
7 May 2022 (must be filed by the 7th day of the 2nd month following the end of your income year)
30 April 2023 (30 days after the due date of income tax return)
Due date with a COVID extension
29 June 2021
7 August 2021
No COVID extension
No COVID extension
No COVID extension
31 August 2021**
31 August 2021
No extension
No extension
No extension
* For businesses with a standard balance date and a tax agent. See our Claims Date Finder for further details.
** Please note that any payments on approved supplementary returns filed for Year 1 after 29 June 2021 (and before 31 August) will not be processed until after the Bill covering the Unconditional Extension has been passed. This is likely to be shortly before 31 March 2022.
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