New Legislation Extends Carryback of Net Operating Losses up to Five Years

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On November 6, 2009, President Obama signed into law the Worker, Homeownership, and Business Assistance Act of 2009 (the “Act”). Among other things, the Act generally allows taxpayers to make a special election to extend the net operating loss (“NOL”) carryback period from two to as many as five years for NOLs arising in 2008 and 2009. Earlier this year, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (“ARRA”) extended the NOL carryback period from two to up to five years for NOLs arising in 2008 for certain “eligible small businesses” (defined as any corporation or partnership with average gross receipts over the previous three years of $15 million or less). The NOL carryback provisions of the Act in essence expand the relief provided under ARRA to most businesses, and expand the time period to include NOLs arising in 2009.

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