Submitting your claim

Get information, advice and guidance on submitting a claim.

Covid-19 guidance - changes to the Invest NI processing procedures

As a result of recently issued government advice in relation to social distancing and home working, Invest NI is making the following temporary changes to its claims processing procedures with immediate effect.

Changes include:

  • The temporary cessation of all claims site visits, all claims will be reviewed by Invest NI staff remotely

Customers should continue to submit their claims in the normal manner to

We offer customers two types of grant support, Trigger-based and Cost based.

Trigger-based grants

Trigger-based grants are those where payment of grant is "triggered" when a specific target (identified in your Letter of Offer) is reached. The targets are typically employment-related and payment of grant is authorised following vouching of a valid claim against appropriate documentary evidence.

A standard claim pack must be used for employment trigger-based grant claims. The claim pack is available below and comprises of a claim form and various tabs. The claim pack also includes steps and guidance for claim pack completion.

For all other Trigger-based grants contact to request a claim pack/form.

Cost-based grants

Cost-based grants are those where payment of grant is made as a reimbursement of expenditure incurred and paid against the eligible costs of approved activities detailed in your Letter of Offer.

A standard claim pack must be used for all cost-based grant claims. The claim pack is available below and comprises of a claim form, various cost schedules and supporting schedules.

FAQs - Claim pack

Below is a list of the most frequently asked questions. These, along with the Guidance Notes should help address any queries you may have. If you cannot find the answer to your query please contact

Frequently asked questions

What is the difference between the new Claim pack and previous Claim packs?

The new Claim pack offers an improved and simplified methodology for determining the Project Hourly Rate (PHR) for employees.

What is the PHR?

The PHR is the Project Hourly Rate. This is used to determine the eligible cost of time spent on project activity by employees.
Project Labour Cost = Eligible Hours x Project Hourly Rate (PHR)

Why have you introduced these changes?

This simplified cost option has many benefits:

  • easier to use as it requires a once in a project lifetime data entry for each employee
  • reduced vouching requirement

Feedback from customers has consistently identified the determination of the Project Hourly Rate to be used to calculate the eligible costs of time spent by employees on project activity as complex and difficult. A published list of rates was introduced in January 2017 that provided a Project Hourly Rate depending on the salary band of employees. Further improvements have now been introduced to our new Claim pack that now determine the Project Hourly Rate for employees from data entered onto a PHR schedule incorporated in the claim pack.

How is the PHR determined?

The PHR of an individual employee is determined from the Basic Salary / Basic Hourly Rate data and “Labour Cost Type” relating to that employee at the project start date (or the employment start date if later) as entered onto the PHR schedule in Claim pack.

What is the Labour Cost Type?

For R&D Letters of Offer that identify a Project Hourly Rate: please select the appropriate “R&D Unit Cost” option from the drop down list under labour cost type. For all other offers – select either Salary, Hourly Paid, or Agency as appropriate from the drop down list.

What is the Basic Salary / Basic Hourly Rate?

The basic salary / wage payable to an employee but before payment of shift premiums, overtime, bonuses etc. For clarification, the Gross Basic Salary Cost does not include Employer’s National Insurance costs nor any other employer costs (e.g. Employer’s pension contributions, in-kind costs etc). For salaried employees, enter the basic salary payable, for waged workers, enter the Basic Hourly Rate payable.

What do I enter as the Basic Salary / Basic Hourly Rate for employees where my Letter of Offer specifies a labour Project Hourly Rate?

Enter the Project Hourly Rate as specified in your Letter of Offer. You must also select the appropriate “R&D Unit Cost” option from the drop down list under labour cost type.

How is the PHR schedule used in my claim?

The PHR schedule must include all employees engaged in project activity and this automatically updates the “Labour Costs – Project Hours” cost schedule on the claim pack. The claim pack will not be able to compute eligible costs for time spent on project activities by employees who are not included on the PHR schedule.

Can I use previous claim packs when submitting future claims?

Yes – but only for project activities / expenditure incurred up to 30 September 2017. All claims that include Project Labour Costs incurred after 30 September 2017 must be submitted on the new Claim pack.

Do I still need to complete the PHR schedule where my Letter of Offer specifies a labour Project Hourly Rate?

Yes – Select the relevant option from the drop down menu from “Labour Cost Type” in the PHR schedule.

What if my Letter of Offer does not specify a labour Project Hourly Rate?

A Project Hourly Rate will be generated for each employee from data entered onto the PHR schedule provided within the claim pack. Basic Salary / wage information as at the project start date (or employee start date if later) is entered for each employee. Data on the PHR schedule should be copied onto the PHR schedule of subsequent claims meaning that subsequent schedules only need to be updated for new employees working on the project.

Do I still have to maintain attendance sheets for project hours?

Yes daily attendance records must be maintained for all hours worked on eligible project activity that must include the following.

  • description of activity
  • date of activity
  • hours spent on the activity
  • signature of employee
  • signature of appropriate authoriser/approver

If I have a system to generate weekly or monthly attendance records – will this be sufficient going forward?

Records can be weekly or monthly but they must be able to break down hours daily and met the above criteria.

Why are eligible hours capped?

Daily hours are capped to a ‘standard day’ of 8 hours. This is done to safeguard customers against the increased vouching requirements that arise when claims are submitted for hours additional to a “standard” day. This is extremely difficult to vouch when employees are salaried and the claim specifies they are claiming for additional hours to a standard day.

Can a cap in excess of the standard day be set?

In exceptional circumstances, the standard day can be amended but this needs to have been agreed with your Invest NI project contact and included in your Letter of Offer. You should be aware of the significant supplementary vouching required to confirm:

  • additional payment has been actually made to the employee for ALL hours worked in excess of 8 hours per day (TOIL/FLEXI arrangements are NOT sufficient for this purpose)
  • robust and sufficient systems in place to record and clearly demonstrate the payment of 'additional' daily hours

Other documents required to accompany your claim

Employee Reference Schedule

An Employee Reference Schedule must be provided in support of all claims that include Labour Costs.

Download the Employee Reference Schedule (XLS)

Note - The Employee Reference Schedule is separate from the PHR schedule contained in the claim pack. The PHR schedule only includes employee reference numbers. The Employee Reference Schedule links the employee reference number to an individual - we keep the lists on separate schedules in the interests of data protection.

Supporting Documentation

It is not necessary to include electronic copies of supporting documentation (e.g. invoices, bank statements) along with your claim. We will issue a request for any documentation required for inspection as we process your claim.

Further guidance

Further guidance is available on our eligible costs page

Guidance relates to:

  • Project Labour
  • Travel and Accommodation
  • VAT
  • Acceptable Methods of Payment

Guidance on completing the claim pack is available in the Claim pack guidance notes (PDF)

Need help submitting a claim?

Our Claims Team will assist you with any queries that you may have about your claim. Please quote the Letter of Offer reference number and claim reference number (where known) before contacting us on

We will aim to contact you within two working days of receiving your enquiry. However, at busy times, it may not be possible to respond within two working days.

Contact our
Business support team

0800 181 4422


Send us an enquiry

For information on how we use your personal data including your rights, see our privacy notice.
Coronavirus promo image

Coronavirus business support