Posted on Thursday 2 May 2013 by Ulster Business

Cavanagh Kelly

Aeveen Daly; Cavanagh Kelly Tax Director and Des Kelly; Cavanagh Kelly Tax Partner

Cavanagh Kelly has hosted two very successful Tax Seminars attended by many local businesses, bankers and other professionals in the SilverBirch Hotel, Omagh and the Westville Hotel, Enniskillen.

The key focus of the tax seminars was to encourage businesses to maximise tax relief opportunities for their business in particular in relation to investment and innovation. Des Kelly, Partner with Cavanagh Kelly, outlined the key tax reliefs available for Northern Irish businesses with a particular emphasis on Research & Development Tax Credits and the Patent Box Regime.

Mr Kelly noted that Research & Development Tax Credits are "considerably underclaimed and recent changes have made this relief very attractive for companies". He focused on the benefit the relief can give to companies in offering a 225% deduction for costs incurred on Research & Development projects. Mr Kelly highlighted examples of projects which can qualify for the relief emphasising that "ground breaking work does not have to be undertaken to get the relief. Many companies are incurring R&D as part of their everyday activities in addressing problems and in responding to market demands".

Mr Kelly also focused on the Patent Box which is being introduced in April offering companies the possibility to avail of a 10% Corporation Tax rate. Mr Kelly noted that "many businesses are likely to be carrying out process and product improvements as an integral part of their on-going drive to stay competitive in to-day's economic environment. It may only be a question of having a review of their products/processes to identify potentially patentable products/processes".

Aeveen Daly, Tax Director with Cavanagh Kelly provided insight into Budget 2013. She looked at the budgetary changes in detail and the impact of the changes on Northern Irish businesses and individuals. Chancellor George Osbourne in his closing remarks in his budgetary speech said that "this is a budget that doesn't duck our nation's problems. It confronts them head on". Ms Daly did not share the Chancellor's opinion. She noted that "while the budget did provide some small incentives for our SME sector, they did not go far enough".

Ms Daly then focused on the positive aspects of the budgetary changes with the provision of a further 1% reduction in the Corporation Tax rate to 20% and the introduction of a £2,000 National Insurance Contribution allowance for all businesses which should "provide a welcome cash boost to local businesses".

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