Argent Minerals (ASX:ARD) Announces Details of R&D Tax Dispute Settlement and Progression of Further Claims

August 17th, 2020

Argent Minerals Limited has previously disclosed a liability in the company’s 2019 annual report for “R&D Claims repayable” of approximately $1.4M. This liability was in respect of R&D Tax Offsets for the FY16 and FY17 periods that AusIndustry had found related to ineligible activities.

Argent Minerals Limited had, at the time reported that the company remained of the view that its R&D activities were eligible, and intended to pursue a dispute of the adverse finding.

In May 2020, the company announced that it had entered into a settlement agreement with Innovation Australia in respect of the company’s appeal to the AAT in respect of the disputed claims in the FY16 and FY17.

The company has since announced to the ASX in late July 2020 that:

  • The AAT matters relating to the company’s claims for the FY16 and FY17 periods have been resolved, and no further actions are pending;
  • The settlement allows a substantial credit towards the funds owed to the ATO for the previous adverse assessments;
  • A further claim for the FY18 period (subsequent to the years originally in dispute) was agreed, and is currently being completed.

The above is a good outcome for the company, considering that when companies’ activities reach the stage of a negative finding and AAT dispute, compliance proceedings can be difficult to settle or overturn.

This is a reminder that R&D Claims must be compiled and assessed with care, and that claimants should carefully adhere to R&D Tax Compliance guidance published by AusIndustry and the ATO.

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