Tax & Assurance Guidance

Insights from Washington: Continued Negotiations and R&D Update

Posted on October 18, 2021 by

Sarah Russell

Sarah Russell

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Negotiations on the budget bill are picking back up as Congress returns from a week-long break. It appears Democrats are uniting around a $2 trillion top-line, but the party remains divided over which pieces of President Biden’s agenda will be included. Progressives in the party want to include the full list while reducing the numbers of years such benefits will be available. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer are eying the month’s end as an unofficial deadline for an agreement on the framework of the bill, when funding for the federal transportation program expires.

President Biden met with the leader of the Congressional Progressive Caucus on Monday and plans to have conversations with Moderates to bring the sides together. As compromise happens in both factions of the party, it seems likely a $2 trillion top-line bill will include income eligibility requirements as well as sunset provisions on certain programs. As we’ve said before, the top-line cost of the package will drive the tax increases. Currently negotiations are stuck on the spending portion of the package and it remains to be seen what tax increases will be implemented to pay for it.

Other News: R&D Tax Credit Guidance

The IRS released guidance on October 15 which will require additional information to be submitted with a claim for research credit refunds. Specifically, taxpayers will be required to provide a list of business components, identify all research activities performed during the development of each business component, name the individuals who performed the activities and the information they sought to discover, and provide the total qualified wage, supplies, and contract research expenses for the year.  Such information will be required to be submitted beginning January 10, 2022. There will be a one-year transition period during which taxpayers will have 30 days to refine a research credit claim prior to the IRS’s final determination of the claim.

While the guidance may seem burdensome, it provides clarity for taxpayers on how to successfully seek refunds on amended returns claiming retroactive research credits.

We will continue to provide updates as the news progresses. If you have any questions, please contact us.

Sarah Russell


Sarah leads the firm’s domestic and international tax practice and is known for the practical & passionate way she advocates for clients.

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