How Architects can Take Advantage of the SR&ED Tax Incentives

Architecture firms often design buildings with innovative techniques, developing new methods when the traditional ways just won’t cut it. Any time you try to push the boundaries and advance the field, you are engaging in a form of R&D. 

Oftentimes, when people hear of the Scientific Research & Experimental Development tax credit, they fail to realize their work could qualify. The Canadian government offers this innovation tax credit to a wide variety of businesses- not just scientists. With that being said, not all types of innovation qualify – but if you meet the following criteria, you should look into the credit.

The government looks for any innovative activity that involves systematic investigation and the development of – or improvement on – new or existing products, methods, devices and so on. Consider these three tests to determine if you qualify:

  • Does your work further technical knowledge or create advancement in the industry?
  • Does your work overcome scientific or technological uncertainties?
  • Does your work use a systematic process of experimentation, to overcome something not immediately obvious to an expert in the field?


Businesses can claim back a percentage of innovation expenses, with the qualifying costs made up of supplies, contractors, and staff salaries. The amount and process can vary by province and business type. Businesses are also eligible to claim up to 18 months after the tax year in which the innovations took place.

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