R&D Tax Credits for Main Street

You don’t have to send a rocket to Mars to qualify for the Research & Development tax credit. There are thousands of businesses that claim this credit annually whose innovations you’ve never heard of and thousands more who haven’t even reached the finish line. If you’re worried about even asking the question of whether your business qualifies…STOP IT! If you believe your business has (or is developing) a novel product, process, formula or software, it’s worth a chat.

Get Started

Dark Horse Believes...

...determining if you should qualify should be easy

We can let you know in relatively short order whether your business qualifies in a judgment-free way that won’t leave you feeling embarrassed for asking.

If you can answer yes to at least 3 of the below questions, we should talk.
Are you developing or improving a product, process, formula, or software?
Is your work within one of the
Commonly Eligible Industries?
Are you asking questions like “Can we develop it?” or “How do we develop it?”
Are you systematically evaluating one or more alternatives?
Get Started

...your R&D tax credit should be defensible

Dark Horse works with a team of R&D credit specialists who create a robust tax credit study that dots every “i” and crosses every “t” should the IRS ever want to take a closer look.  The tax credit mills that crank out a high volume of credits care very little about whether the credit can be substantiated under audit because they’ll likely have wound down their business by the time they would have to face the music.

Get Started

...you should know which expenses qualify in real-time

It’s difficult to forecast or create budgets when you don’t know the tax impact of your budgeted spend. Dark Horse will help you identify which expenses qualify, and since we do your bookkeeping, we can create clear accounting that shows you the costs alongside the projected R&D tax credit amount.

Get Started

...missing out on the R&D tax credit is a shame.

If you wait too long to claim the R&D tax credit, you may not be able to claim it at all. The IRS limits the amount of time you have to amend prior year tax returns in order to claim the credit. So, if you’re waiting to claim the credit because you don’t think you can utilize it right now, we urge you to reconsider.

For most companies, the credit is worth 7-10% of qualified research expenditures. It’s a dollar-for-dollar credit against taxes owed, which can dramatically lower your effective tax rate. Plus, it can be carried back one tax year and carried forward for 20 years.

Depending on the particulars of your business and personal tax situation, the tax credit can be used to offset:
Income taxes for a C Corporation
Income taxes for an individual owner of a Partnership or S Corporation
The employer portion of FICA taxes
The employer portion of Social Security and Medicare tax
Get Started

3 Steps to Claim Your R&D Credit

Step One

We'll help you determine if your business qualifies for the Research & Development Tax Credit

Step Two

If you qualify, we’ll coordinate with our R&D credit team to collect all information needed to claim the credit

Step Three

We'll claim the credit on your behalf, ensuring the correct elections are made to maximize the credit

Without Dark Horse

In Leon Max v. Commissioner, the tax court ruled rather unfavorably to the taxpayer...
Nearly $1MM in R&D tax credits disallowed.
Taxpayer paid penalties and interest on the tax assessed, as well as the costs incurred to litigate.
Common solutions to common problems won't qualify. Competent professionals should have intervened on behalf of the taxpayer.

With Dark Horse

An online supplement business in California that is consistently investing a significant amount in the development of their products.
Fed $44,475 CA $33,356
Credits from W2 and Contractor Wages
Fed $43,405 CA $30,874
Credits from W2 and Contractor Wages
Fed $39,904 CA $29,928
Credits from W2 and Contractor Wages
Get Started

Your R&D Tax Credit Experts

Find Your Dark Horse CPA

When you work with Dark Horse, you're actually working with your very own Dark Horse CPA, instead of a rotating roster of staff like you get with the traditional CPA firm. Select a specialty below to get matched with the right CPA.

Rotating wordsDark Horse logo

Get a personable & experienced CPA who will partner with you to achieve unparalleled results.

Get Started
Lisa R.
Suzi Drennen is the most knowledgeable, conscientious, and responsive CPA I have ever known—which is why I’ve stayed with her for more than 10 years. She is honest, has always gotten back to me quickly even at the height of tax season, and has saved me thousands of dollars over the years. The icing on the cake is that Suzi’s easy to work with and on top of that, a great person! She and her firm are tops!


Because we're entirely cloud-based, we can work with you from anywhere. If you prefer to work with a local CPA, check out our quickly growing list of locations.

Choose a Location

Information presented is for educational purposes only and does not intend to make an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any securities. The Dark Horse Advisor's website and its associated links offer news, commentary, and generalized research, not personalized investment advice. Nothing on this website should be interpreted to state or imply that past performance is an indication of future performance. All investments involve risk and unless otherwise stated, are not guaranteed. Be sure to consult with a tax professional before implementing any investment strategy. Investment Advisory Services offered through Dark Horse Advisors, LLC, an Investment Advisor registered with the State of Nevada. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. 

Certain Investment Adviser Representatives of Dark Horse Advisors, LLC are dually registered with DFPG Investments, LLC as Registered Representatives of the broker-dealer and Investment Adviser Representatives of the Registered Investment Adviser. Securities offered through DFPG Investments, LLC member FINRA/SIPC.