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Steps to claim for RDTI Significant Performers

There is a separate RDTI claim process available for businesses who intend to spend above $2 million on eligible R&D in one income year. These businesses can opt to become an RDTI ‘Significant Performer’. This separate claim process allows the Significant Performer to self assess their activity eligibility using a criteria and methodology (CAM) approved by the RDTI team.

Is being recognised as a Significant Performer right for me?

The Significant Performer option is suited to businesses that are undertaking a large number of core R&D activities. Read our How-To Guide to help you to decide if the RDTI Significant Performer regime is right for you.

What is the process for CAM approval?

As a Significant Performer you can choose to use the separate CAM process for either:

  • all of your R&D activities
  • some of your R&D activities (and apply for General Approval for your other projects not covered by the CAM application)
  • none of your R&D activities, instead, applying for general approval for all your R&D activities.

CAM approval can cover R&D activities over a period of up to 3 years.

Here’s an example of how to make a CAM claim:


Contact the RDTI team

Once you have reviewed the information about becoming a Significant Performer, please contact the RDTI team for an initial discussion to determine if this option is right for you. If you decide to proceed, you will need to complete the steps below.


Submit your RDTI application for Criteria and Methodologies (CAM) approval

If you choose to claim the RDTI as a Significant Performer, you will need to submit a CAM application no later than 6 months after the start of your first income year which the application relates to. Detailed submission dates can be found in the Claims date finder.

What does the application for Criteria and Methodologies (CAM) approval look like in myIR?

If you have enrolled for the RDTI, you will find the application for ‘Criteria and Methodologies’ (CAM) approval in your myIR account. You will be required to submit details about your:

  • estimated eligible R&D expenditure
  • significant performer election
  • associated parties
  • R&D activities and governance
  • accounting and expenditure
  • contact details

Submit any applications for General Approval (GA) which will not be covered by the CAM

You will need to remember to submit an application for general approval (GA) for any core and supporting R&D activities that you do not include in your CAM application. Any general approval applications need to be submitted at the same time as your CAM application. Find out how to submit an application for general approval (GA).


Complete the CAM approval process

After you have submitted your CAM application, you can expect the following to happen:

  • An IR case manager will contact you to arrange an initial discussion about your CAM approval.
  • You will be asked to complete a CAM documentation workbook.
  • IR will assess the information you supply in the workbook and give feedback, either in person or in writing.
  • You will then be asked to provide a list of eligible activities for the first year of the CAM.
  • IR will request a detailed submission on a selection of these eligible activities (typically 3-5 activities).
  • You will need to demonstrate in your submission how you have applied your R&D criteria and methodologies to identify activities and decide the eligibility of activities.
  • Once IR is confident that they understand your R&D criteria and methodologies, they will make a decision on whether your CAM application is approved.

Submit your Income Tax Return

Once you have obtained CAM approval, the next step comes at the end of the year when you prepare your income tax return in myIR. Your income tax return will include a few extra fields to allow you to calculate the amount of income tax payable, as the RDTI is a tax credit that reduces the total amount of income tax that you owe.


Submit your Research & Development Supplementary Return and R&D Certificate

The final step in the process is the submission of your RDTI supplementary return. If you have enrolled for the RDTI, you will find the ‘Research and Development Supplementary Return’ in your myIR account (it must be filed electronically).

The supplementary return requires you to provide details about the money you spent on your eligible R&D activities. You will need to supply the amounts for different expenditure types like salary costs, contractor costs and depreciation.

What does the RDTI supplementary return look like in myIR?

  • Preview the myIR screenshots here, to help you prepare your submission. Note that this preview is a guide only – your RDTI supplementary return must be electronically filed in myIR.
  • Once you have received  a CAM approval a separate tab on the supplementary return will be available to you and any associated parties covered by the CAM agreement to enter the R&D expenditure.
  • Associated parties that wish to claim their share of the credit will need to enrol for the RDTI and file their own supplementary return.
  • Still have questions? Contact the RDTI team.

Include an R&D certificate with your supplementary return

Along with your supplementary return, you must also supply an R&D certificate from an approved R&D certifier. As an approved CAM applicant, you are required to engage an approved certifier to perform an annual certification of your R&D expenditure. An R&D certificate provides IR with reasonable assurance that you have complied with the R&D requirements set out in your CAM agreement. Find an authorised R&D certifier here.

The supplementary return, along with your R&D certificate, must be filed no later than 30 days after the due date of your income tax return.

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