Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Tax Incentive Program

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What is the SR&ED Program?

The Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) program is a federal tax incentive program to encourage
Canadian businesses of all sizes and in all sectors to conduct research and development (R&D) in Canada that will lead to new,
improved, or technologically advanced products or processes.

The SR&ED program is the largest single source of federal government support for industrial research and development.

Who qualifies?

Generally, a Canadian-controlled private corporation (CCPC) can earn an investment tax credit (ITC) of 35% up to the
first $3 million of qualified expenditures for SR&ED carried out in Canada, and 20% on any excess amount.
Other Canadian corporations, proprietorships, partnerships, and trusts can earn an ITC of 20% of qualified expenditures for SR&ED carried out in Canada.

What kind of projects qualify?

To qualify for the SR&ED program, work must advance the understanding of scientific relations or technologies,
address scientific or technological uncertainty, and incorporate a systematic investigation by qualified personnel.

Work that qualifies for SR&ED tax credits includes:

  • experimental development to achieve technological advancement to create new materials, devices, products, or processes, or improve existing ones;
  • applied research to advance scientific knowledge with a specific practical application in view;
  • basic research to advance scientific knowledge without a specific practical application in view; and
  • support work in engineering, design, operations research, mathematical analysis, computer programming, data collection, testing, or psychological research, but only if the work is commensurate with, and directly supports, the eligible experimental development, or applied or basic research.

CRA – Learn more about SR&ED incentive program