Tax claims: Get credit where it’s due

Posted on 7 Dec 2012 by The Manufacturer

R&D Tax Claims Ltd has helped a West Midlands-based specialist engineering company claim back over £95,000 from HMRC for money spent on research and development.

R&D Tax Claims, based in Wolverhampton, worked with A&M EDM Ltd of Smethwick to claim back corporation tax on money spent on R&D (research and development). The company provides high specification precision-made parts and tooling to the aerospace and automotive sector using wire and spark erosion and CNC manufacturing processes.

A&M was founded in 2002 by Mark Wingfield and Arthur Watts, both precision engineers, with no bank borrowing and a £17,000 loan from Mark’s brother-in-law. The company now occupies a 10,000 sq ft site and employs a team of 35 skilled engineers.

“Our main business is spark erosion, EDM and wire erosion”, says managing director Mark Wingfield. “This has led us into precision engineering, pressed tool manufacture, mould tool making, extrusion tool making – we have the machinery to make anything, and our global clients include JLR, Goodrich Aerospace, Marstons Aerospace and Hadley Sections. We also help other companies across the UK who need our skills and precision machinery to overcome tricky problems. Our intellectual property lies in skills built up over decades.”

Missing out

“Pretty much all of our output is R&D led”, continues Mr Wingfield. “But our accountants had said claiming for R&D could be difficult to prove, and we thought it would be time consuming and costly.”

But this assumption was shown-up as false after a visit from R&D Tax Claims for a no obligation chat. “They operate on a no win, no fee basis so we knew we had nothing to lose,” shrugs Wingfield.

Mark Evans, managing director of R&D Tax Claims says, “It was clear that A&M were eligible for a tax refund as their work is R&D driven. We met with Mark in early January, submitted to HMRC on 6 February, and got the reclaim within two months.”

“We were really surprised at the speed of the reclaim”, says Wingfield. “We have invested it in a 1,000 sq ft two storey extension and inspection area, so that when our clients visit, they see our quality precision work showcased to perfection.”

Explaining why help from professionals can be so helpful in a successful R&D tax claim Evans says, “We take the technical elements of what a company does, and present the evidence to HMRC in a clear manner. The clarity of the message is vital in proving the case beyond doubt.”

More than a one off

Evans says that it is a pleasure to help a company like A&M. “We’ll be working with them again next year to process a further refund”, he assures.

“A&M are committed to constant reinvestment in the business, creating new jobsand opportunities for the next generation of skilled engineers.” However, Evans asserts that many companies like A&M don’t realise that such work can constitute R&D. But a refund can encourage them to carry on investing in activities which are important to the future of their own companies- and British industry as whole.

“The future looks great”, concludes Wingfield. “The recession’s been good to us. In 2009, our turnover dropped by 17 per cent but we still took staff on and bought more machines. I see problems as opportunities; when a runaway milk delivery lorry demolished our offices we seized the opportunity to build better ones. Business is looking good and we have a large contract ready to sign. At the end of the day, it’s about giving people jobs, opportunities and a future.”