Like me, you must send your 2009 business tax return to the IRS before March 15. Last weekend, talking to 2 friends of the industry who had a difficult time with their businesss in 2009, I was surprised that they didn’t know that under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, any business owners who has been losing money recently can claim a tax refund against taxes paid in profitable years. It’s called “loss carry back.” and it’s a boost from the Federal stimulus program that you can’t ignore.
Tax rules let businesses carry back losses and deduct the money from earlier profits. By filing an amended tax return for the earlier, profitable year, the business can claim an immediate refund on the taxes it paid. The recovery act extended the number of years a business can carry back from 2 to 5 for companies that have average annual sales of $15 million or less. Congress expanded the break to larger companies in November. If you company uses the “loss carry back” (why not? stimulus money comes your taxes!), the government send you a check against 2009 losses, drawn against taxes paid on profits in prior years. Of course, to benefit from this stimulus money, our business must have been profitable in former years. Talk to your CPA first.