A change to the rates of assistance under the R&D tax incentive to 43.5% (down from 45%) for eligible entities with a turnover under $20 million per annum and not controlled by a tax exempt entity, and to 38.5% (down from 40%) for all other eligible entities. This would apply from 1 July 2014.

Registration is a critical first step in accessing the R&D tax incentive. The deadline for lodging an application for registration is 10 months after the end of a company's income year.

With effect from 1 July 2014, a $100 million threshold applies to the R&D expenditure for which companies can claim a concessional tax offset under the R&D Tax Incentive. For any R&D expenditure amounts above $100 million, companies will still be able to claim a tax offset at the company tax rate.

TIP: The ATO is working closely with AusIndustry to identify taxpayers who may be involved in aggressive R&D tax arrangements. Taxpayers should make sure their claims are attributed to activities consistent with their AusIndustry registrations, and expenses (e.g. labour costs) were actually incurred on R&D activities