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R&D Tax Incentive

In today’s challenging economy, investment in research and development (R&D) is vital. R&D creates new knowledge, new or improved processes, services and goods, and skilled jobs for more New Zealanders.

The R&D Tax Incentive (RDTI) helps make R&D possible. It allows qualifying businesses to claim a 15% tax credit on their eligible research and development (R&D) costs, reducing the income tax they need to pay. Loss-making businesses can apply to have this tax credit refunded or carried forward.

There are ways for businesses to access the RDTI even if their R&D investment is small (less than $50,000 pa), or even if the outcomes of their R&D are not successful.

What is R&D and do I qualify?

R&D is about discovering the unknown. It seeks to resolve scientific or technological uncertainty and, in doing so, it can give your business a competitive edge.

To qualify for the RDTI, your R&D must occur in New Zealand and follow a systematic approach. It needs to address an uncertainty that a competent professional in the relevant field cannot resolve without undertaking a systematic course of investigation. Also, the knowledge required to resolve your uncertainty cannot be publicly available.

If now is the time to reset or revitalise your R&D programme, you’ve come to the right place.

F&P Healthcare

“The Growth Grant has been helpful to us, but the R&D tax credit is going to be better again due to the sheer amount of R&D we do.”
Andrew Somervell, Products and Technology VP, F&P Healthcare
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“Beca gets immense value from the support we receive from Callaghan Innovation – it makes good business sense for us to move to the R&D Tax Incentive Scheme.”
Mark Fleming, CFO, Beca
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Volpara Health

“More companies in New Zealand doing R&D will now be able to receive a benefit and that's good for NZ Inc.”
Craig Hadfield, CFO, Volpara Health
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How to Claim

The RDTI is a tax credit, so it must be claimed through Inland Revenue in your income tax return. The process will be linked to your myIR account, so that it is easy to find and manage in one place.

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.
Learn how to claim the RDTI

R&D Tax Incentive How-To Guides

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