How to Choose the Right SR&ED Consultant

As a leader in your industry, you’re pushing the boundaries of scientific knowledge and technology with product development and experimentation. But did you know that you can get government funding to help the process of your creativity? At Maxim Innovation, we’ve put together everything you need to know to get started on reaping the benefits of government incentives so that you can focus on what matters most: Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) projects. Here are our tips on how to choose the right SR&ED consultant for your business.

Generally Speaking, There Are Four Types of SR&ED Firms

1. Large international firms

These firms handle the majority of audits due to their large networks in accounting and professional financial services. They provide aid for both public and private companies since they have the resources and expertise to dominate the SR&ED claims market. 

They have the resilience of a large company but this also comes with a large client base, huge overhead, and a push to have a high SR&ED claim turnover. This means that your file will likely have less time spent on it than what’s probably necessary to have a successful application. 

They’re incredibly costly ranging from $250-750 per hour!

2. “Boutique” accounting firms that tend to specialize in certain areas of accounting.

Compared to large accounting firms, these companies have a smaller overhead. So, they’ll likely be more committed to personally looking after your file due to having a lower client-to-accountant ratio. Consequently, these accountants have more room to think creatively and file a well-vetted SR&ED claim with the CRA.  

As you now know, however, the SR&ED programs are relatively new. This means these incentives may still be considered a tack-on option to your pre-existing file with them. In other words, you’ll likely have to bring SR&ED grants and incentives to the firm’s attention instead of the other way around. Plus, these accountants may not have the knowledge or experience to properly and efficiently file your SR&ED claim with the CRA.

However, these boutiques are also pricey, starting at $275 per hour.

3. Dedicated SR&ED firms that house SR&ED specialists for both the technological side and the accounting of your SR&ED claim.

These companies typically have two teams: salaried employees and outsourced contractors. Many of these companies do behave ethically and aim to help your business with a properly vetted and filed SR&ED claim. 

However, an argument can be made that salaried accountants are less likely to demonstrate passion or dedication to your SR&ED claim since they’re already benefiting from your claim with them. Not to mention, there’s a possibility of a large client list and massive overhead, producing the same issues as a large international firm.

Additionally, their outside contractors tend to have vague verbiage or include ineligible expenses, projects or activities as a part of your claim. This could result in your claim being rejected by the CRA. 

Most don’t offer hourly rates, but those that do start from $75 per hour all the way up to $450 per hour.

4. Individual SR&ED Consultants Or Local Accounting Firms

These individual consultants specialize in preparing and filing your SR&ED claim with the CRA. 

They typically have an engineering or business background so they tend to have additional services beyond filing an SR&ED claim.

 Additionally, they have a much smaller overhead so the savings you’ll receive from hiring their services will go directly back into your business’ coin purse. However, they may not have the network, experience, or resources to fully back your SR&ED claim.

These rates depend on the individual consultant.

What Does This Mean For My Business?

That’s a great question! It means that you need to make sure that the company you choose to file your claim aligns with your company’s industry standards and values. Here are three reasons to consider:

  • The bulk of your SR&ED claim will be handled by a single consultant. 
  • Any mistakes could be incredibly costly to your business. 
  • You would be the one held responsible if your SR&ED claim is found to be fraudulent by the CRA.

Click here to visit the SR&ED section of the CRA’s website.

This Is Where Maxim Innovation Comes In!

Maxim Innovation is an intimate company with dedicated and passionate experts in filing SR&ED claims as well as providing additional accounting services. We have over 25 years of collective industry experience in managing financial tax services, strategic development, project management, and SR&ED project submissions. For you, this means you can trust we have a diverse team to build your claim from all angles in a variety of industries. 

We’ll work with you to build a claim that highlights your company’s SR&ED projects. At Maxim Innovation, we’ll simplify and champion the process so that your claim is as strong as it can be. We’ll navigate through all of the possible government incentives thanks to our association with Kreston GTA and our good standing with the CRA. This way we can give you holistic services while working with you regularly throughout the year to identify funding opportunities as soon as they arise. 

Not yet convinced? That’s okay! We always provide our expertise in a comprehensive and no-risk manner. This means that you don’t pay us until your claim is approved! 

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