Procedures

MESRI – Parution du nouveau guide du CIR – Décembre 2021

Le guide du CIR 2021 vient d’être publié. Il prend désormais en compte les modifications de la doctrine fiscale intervenues lors de la mise à jour de juillet 2021.

  • Dépenses de personnel :

Le paragraphe concernant les « Autres catégories de personnel de recherche éligible » précise maintenant que « Peuvent également être retenues les dépenses afférentes aux intérimaires dès lors qu’ils sont des personnels de recherche directement et exclusivement affectés aux opérations de R&D. » On notera que le guide maintient l’exclusion de la valorisation du personnel en régie (et ajoute ainsi à la loi).

  • Dépenses de recherche externalisées :

> Le guide reprend le schéma établi par le bofip et inclut ainsi les travaux externalisés menés en collaboration.

> Eligibilité des tâches connexes :

La jurisprudence FNAMS (CE, décision du 22 juillet 2020, n° 428127) est intégrée, le guide précise ainsi que « Les dépenses afférentes aux travaux scientifiques et techniques externalisées qui ne constituent pas en tant que tels des opérations de R&D, mais qui sont indispensables à la réalisation d’une opération de R&D éligible au CIR menée en interne par le donneur d’ordre, peuvent également être prises en compte dans la base de calcul du CIR de l’entreprise donneuse d’ordre. » Ce faisant, le guide dénature toutefois les termes utilisés par le Conseil d’Etat qui évoquait des dépenses nécessaires aux projets de recherche et non « un caractère indispensable à la réalisation d’un projet de R&D ».

> Modalités de calcul du CIR pour un sous-traitant agréé :

Le guide indique à ce titre que : « Les sommes reçues par les organismes de recherche ou experts désignés au d) et d bis) du CGI sont déduites pour le calcul de leur propre crédit d’impôt, afin d’éviter qu’une même catégorie de dépenses de recherche ne soit prise en compte à deux reprises. »

Le guide fait également mention de la décision TAKIMA (CE, décision du 9 septembre 2020 n°440523). Pour rappel, cette décision a mis fin à l’interprétation faite par l’Administration de ce mécanisme de neutralisation (laquelle ajoutait à la loi et pouvait parfois aboutir à générer un CIR négatif). Il précise que le Conseil d’Etat interprète la disposition susvisée « comme l’obligation pour les organismes de recherche d’exclure de la base de calcul de leur propre CIR les dépenses éligibles exposées pour la réalisation des opérations de recherche effectuées pour le compte de tiers, et non l’intégralité des sommes reçues ».

> Enfin, concernant la sous-traitance en cascade, l’exclusion des prestations réalisées par un sous-traitant de rang 3 n’est pas expressément reprise mais implicite.

  • Subventions publiques :

Le guide indique que les prêts à taux zéro innovation (PTZI) distribués par Bpifrance suivent le même traitement que celui applicable aux subventions remboursables. Ils doivent donc être déduits de l’assiette valorisée, au titre de l’année d’exposition des dépenses couvertes par le prêt.

Source: https://www.enseignementsup-recherche.gouv.fr


Jurisprudence – La qualité de directeur fiscal d’un groupe ne permet pas d’agir sans mandat au nom d’une filiale – Octobre 2021

En l’espèce, la directrice fiscale du groupe avait obtenu du directeur général de la filiale, le pouvoir de se pourvoir de manière permanente devant les tribunaux compétents en matière fiscale.

Le Conseil d’Etat rappelle que « il résulte des dispositions précitées de l’article L. 227-6 du code de commerce, d’une part, que le directeur général d’une société par actions simplifiée ne peut exercer les pouvoirs accordés par cet article au président, lui-même investi par la loi des pouvoirs les plus étendus pour agir en toute circonstance au nom de la société dans la limite de l’objet social, que si les statuts de cette société le prévoient et, d’autre part, que les éventuelles limitations prévues par les statuts aux pouvoirs du président, et par suite du directeur général, si elles ne sont pas opposables aux tiers, le sont à la société ».

Les statuts de la filiale prévoyaient que « son président, et par suite son directeur général, ne pouvaient agir en justice au nom de la société, sauf urgence, sans l’autorisation préalable du conseil de direction ». La filiale n’ayant pu produire devant le tribunal administratif l’autorisation donnée par le conseil de direction, la demande de première instance signée par la directrice fiscale du groupe était par conséquent irrecevable.

Source: légifrance.gouv.fr


Case law - The recognition of the quality of JEI does not prevent a subsequent questioning of the eligibility of projects - July 2021

The Paris Administrative Court of Appeal was questioned on the possible position taken by the administration regarding the eligibility of projects within the framework of an application for the status of Young Innovative Company.

As a preliminary point, it should be recalled that companies which meet the conditions set by article 44 sexies-0 A of the general tax code (CGI) and which are therefore qualified as young innovative companies (JEI) are in particular likely to benefit from tax and social benefits.

Despite the full application of this regime, it is recommended that companies question the tax authorities as part of the so-called specific rescript procedure. Indeed, point 4 of article L. 80 B of the LPF provides that companies can ensure with the tax authorities that they meet the legal conditions to benefit from the provisions of article 44 sexies-0 A of the CGI.

In the judgment in question, the tax administration had called into question the expenses incurred by the company by raising the lack of novelty of the work and that the work was not basic research as initially presented. However, the company tried to argue that the administration had recognized it as a JEI, and thus contradicted itself by questioning the projects for ineligibility.

The Paris Court of Appeal considered that the status of JEI recognized by the tax authorities does not, however, constitute a position regarding the eligibility of research projects for the disputed tax credit. In addition, it is recalled that the considerations coming from the regional directorate for research and technology, are not opposable to the administration because they do not constitute a position taken by the tax administration itself. 

Source: CAA de PARIS, 5th chamber, 07/08/2021, 18PA01318, Sté Procton Labs


Jurisprudence – Intérêts moratoires possibles selon le délai de remboursement – Mai 2021

Le remboursement du CIR de la société qui intervient plus de 6 mois après la demande du contribuable ouvre droit au versement d’intérêts moratoires.

Ceci peut s’appliquer dans 2 cas, que l’administration ait gardé le silence ou que celle-ci ait fait perdurer la procédure d’analyse conduisant à une acceptation partielle ou totale.

Source: CE, 11 mai 2021, n°441603, Acofi Gestion et CE, 11 mai 2021, n°442936, Groupe ESA


Case law - Non-admissibility of a reimbursement request deemed late - April 2021

In a judgment of April 15, 2021, the Administrative Court of Nantes ruled on the validity of a reimbursement request considered late by the tax administration.

In this case, the company had incurred research expenses in 2010.

The company declared its expenses in order to benefit from the research tax credit in a special declaration issued on July 15, 2013.

On May 12, 2017, it sent a contentious complaint to the administration to request reimbursement of the debt acquired during the realization of the research expenses of 2010, declared in 2013.

On April 20, 2018, the tax administration rejected his request for late filing of the claim.

The Administrative Court of Appeal hearing the case, ruled that it was incumbent on the company to "request before December 31, 2016 the reimbursement of the research tax credit available to it in 2010 and which it did not have. imputed that year, nor the three following years 2011, 2012 and 2013, because of its deficit situation. ".

Thus, the company had to consider the theoretical reporting year as the starting point for charging in order to request reimbursement from January 1, 2014, and not to consider the special declaration date as the starting point.

Source: CAA de NANTES, 1st bedroom, 04/15/2021, 19NT02627, SAS Transports Blochon-Martin


Press release - Renewal of the request for early repayment of tax credit debts before the filing of the tax package - March 2021

In a press release dated March 2, 2021, Bruno Le Maire, the Minister of the Economy, Finance and Recovery, announced new tax measures to support companies facing economic difficulties due to the health crisis, in particular the renewal of the request for early repayment of refundable tax credits in 2021.

In terms of tax credit, it is expected that the request for restitution of receivables recoverable in 2021 (including the Research / Innovation tax credit), can be requested in advance, before filing the tax return.

Only receivables recoverable in 2021 are therefore concerned (CIR 2020 for SMEs, and CIR not charged for at least 3 years following the declaration for others).

The applicable procedure, specified in the Frequently Asked Questions of the DGFIP devoted to the health crisis, is unchanged compared to last year.

Source: Press release March 2, 2021 - Bruno Le Maire


Case law - Need for the official of the Ministry to request additional information before concluding - February 2021

The MESRI agents who intervene in the tax audit of the Research Tax Credit, are not subject to the obligation to have an oral and contradictory debate with the verified taxpayer.

In a judgment of February 3, the Council of State ruled on the impact of non-compliance with the procedure by officials of the ministry.

The Council of State began by recalling that the officials of the ministry are not subject to the obligation to hold an oral and contradictory debate with the co-payer.

On the other hand, non-compliance with other MESRI obligations can lead to a procedural irregularity, as this would deprive the company of a guarantee. Of course it is necessary to prove a correlation between the non-respect of the procedure by the agent of the ministry and the deprivation of a guarantee having had an influence on the decision of reorganization.

Article R 45 B-1 of the Book of Fiscal Procedures lists the obligations of the agents of the ministry seized within the framework of a control.

The 4 obligations are that the agent must:

- send a request for supporting documents to the company controlled under the CIR.

- guarantee the company a period of thirty days to respond (if necessary extended by the same period on request),

- give the company the option of talking to the agent in charge of the control as part of a second request for additional information,

- and finally, to justify the opinion delivered by the agent of the MESRI when the reality of the allocation to the research of the controlled expenditure is disputed.

Despite the obligations listed, this does not necessarily create an oral and contradictory debate as there is in an accounting verification procedure.

Here, the procedure implies that the MESRI agent, who will note the insufficiency of the supporting documents provided, cannot give his final opinion without having addressed to the company a first request for additional information, then, if necessary, a second which can be the opportunity for the taxpayer to request an interview.

In the present case, the agent of the ministry had not followed the procedure since in his final report, he relied in particular on the insufficient nature of the explanations provided by the company, whereas he had not previously asked him to additional information contrary to what is provided for in article R 45 B-1 of the LPF.

The Council of State then noted that this lack of demand had deprived the company of a guarantee.

Source: Council of State of February 3, 2021 n ° 431253


Finance Law - Additional reporting obligation for companies with expenditure exceeding 10 million euros January 2021

For companies investing between 10 and 100 million, a declaration of the holders of a doctorate financed by the CIR or recruited on this basis must be established in Annex 1 of Cerfa 2069a, taking into account the number of FTEs (equivalent time full) corresponding and their average remuneration.


Government measure - Postponement of the 2016 CIR prescription deadlines - July 2020

For the deadlines granted to both the administration and the taxpayer, these are suspended until 23 August 2020 inclusive and start to run again from 24 August 2020.

The deadline for resuming administration concerning the 2016 CIR will expire after 14/06/2021 (31/12/2020 + 165 days).


Finance law for 2020 - Operating costs - February 2021

The rate of operating costs calculated on staff costs is lowered from 50% to 43% as of CIR 2020.


Case law - Contestation of a refusal of reimbursement - December 2019

It was judged that despite the recognition of an innovative character by the ministry, this was not enough to justify the absence of new techniques. The Court reiterates that the request for reimbursement is a contentious decision.

In this case, a company had requested a reimbursement request for its research tax credit. The tax authorities had refused the applicant company to obtain its reimbursement. The company argued that there was no reason for the rectification proposal and the absence of referral to the advisory committee without bringing new arguments to its case. It requests the appointment of an independent expert.

The Administrative Court of Appeal reiterates the principle according to which the refusal of reimbursement by the administration of the research tax credit is of a contentious nature and does not have the character of a recovery or reorganization procedure. As a result, the guarantees attached to a refusal of reimbursement are not the same as during a recovery or recovery procedure.

The Court reiterates that as long as the company does not justify the new character, does not contradict the opinion of the expert or that of the administration and that it makes no criticism, the latter is not in a position to to demonstrate that its activities constitute a substantial improvement of the processes.

Source: CAA of Nancy, December 27, 2019, n ° 18NC02396


Case law - Guidance on the use of reasons by the administration - December 2019

On the one hand, the administration had refused the reimbursement of the tax credit and had notified a rectification proposal to the company, setting out the reasons for the refusal of reimbursement. However, the Council of State, relying on Articles L 57 and R 57-1 of the Book of Tax Procedures, ruled that the notification of a rectification proposal for the sole reason of referral to the decision rejecting the reimbursement , was not sufficient motivation for the administration.

On the other hand, it was ruled by the Council of State that when the taxpayer receives a proposal for rectification but does not dispute it and does not add any new element to the reasons of the administration, the resumption of the reasons for the response to the taxpayer's observations is on the other hand valid when the taxpayer does not bring any element of dispute to his observations.

Source: CE, December 4, 2019, n ° 424178

The Council of State came to recall the importance of the presence of reasons in a contentious procedure as well as the distinction between an on-the-spot control and on documents.


Case law - Right of return of the CIR within a group - July 2017

Only the parent company is entitled to request the refund of a fraction of corporate tax resulting from the allocation of tax credits for research expenses incurred by other companies belonging to the group.

Source: CAA Versailles of 07/20/2017, n ° 16VE02595



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