What Technical & Technological Uncertainty Mean in SR&ED

Many highly hopeful researchers, developers, innovators and engineers confuse these two terms … technical uncertainty and technological uncertainty. We already tackled the confusion around technological uncertainty and system level uncertainty involved in the SR&ED process in our article Technological vs System Uncertainty in SR&ED Claims. SR&ED is About the Journey not the Destination One of…

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Visit SRED Unlimited at the AMC Exhibition (Nov 2-3, 2016, Toronto)

Visit us at Advanced Manufacturing Canada Conference & Exhibition – Look for Booth #200 (November 2-3, 2016, Toronto Congress Centre, Toronto, Ontario) Advanced Manufacturing Canada (AMC) offers the Canadian manufacturing community a two-day conference and exhibition focused on fostering a national dialogue about how manufacturers can leverage Advanced Manufacturing to stimulate innovation, increase productivity, and…

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The Zen of SR&ED

Perhaps you are familiar with the phrase “the sound of one hand clapping”.  It’s all very mysterious and evocative.  I’m not particularly mystical or meditative, but I’m going to use this phrase in a discussion of two opposite extremes in the preparation of an SR&ED claim.  My thesis is simple — an SR&ED claim needs…

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The Novelty Argument

Of course, no discussion of TA would be complete without talking about “novelty”.  Novelty is what the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) refers to when we make an argument that a certain chunk of work must be a technological advancement because that work entailed doing something that has never been done or attempted before. The first…

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The F-word: Failure

From an SR&ED perspective, project failure is useful.  Failure for technical reasons is most useful. This is not to say that failure is “good”, in any sense – companies don’t appreciate failure, or reward it, usually.  Most companies do not take failure as a sign of new learning, or in any constructive, positive sense.  (I…

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Technological vs System Uncertainty in SR&ED Claims

On March 31, 2015, Judge D’Auray from the Tax Court of Canada in Montreal rendered a ruling that set a precedent for what constitutes “uncertainty” under the CRA’s SR&ED tax credit guidelines. Her ruling also highlighted the role different levels of uncertainty can have on an assessor’s review of a case. Prior to Judge D’Auray’s…

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Technical vs. Technological: what the CRA is saying: Part 2 (continued)

Variance 3 – Acknowledging or adjusting for the business context of the taxpayer contrasts sharply with the current trend, in which CRA reviewers are holding out definitions of advancement at the industry or technology level, regardless of business context. (Note: This will heavily penalize smaller firms, and effectively eliminates the notion of considering business context…

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Technical vs. Technological: what the CRA is saying: Part 1 (continued)

What technical means… to CRA What the CRA is teaching now is that the word “technical” refers generically to a domain of activity – technical content, technical issues, technical questions, and technical uncertainty – many of which are perhaps purely routine in nature. (Though, perhaps not, although CRA now tries to taint the word “technical”…

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