H.R. 3548 - the Worker, Homeownership, and Business Assistance Act of 2009 ("the new Act") - was signed into law on November 6, 2009. Businesses of all sizes may now elect to carRy back 2008 or 2009 net operating losses (NOL) for three, four, or five years. Previously, this election was available only to small businesses, defined as corporations and partnerships generating annual gross receipts of less than $15 million.
Under the new provisions, the NOL carryback to the fifth taxable year preceding the taxable year is limited. Moreover, AMT NOLs can be applied only to 90 percent of AMT income. Still, however, NOL carryback provisions are more favorable than was the case under five-year NOL carryback provisions extended under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Now, the new Act's NOL election's broader scope means tax refunds are available to a greater number of distressed businesses, which can help in the current economic environment.
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