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  • Claiming the loss carry back tax offset

    If you are an eligible corporate entity, loss carry back gives you a refundable tax offset when you choose to carry back losses to specific earlier income years where you had income tax liabilities.

    As it is a refundable tax offset, you may get a:

    • cash refund
    • reduced tax liability
    • reduction of a debt you owe us.

    If you’re eligible, you can claim the tax offset in the 2021 or 2022 income years (the claim income year). For most entities you will do so by completing additional loss carry back labels in your Company tax return 2021 or Company tax return 2022.

    Claiming the tax offset is optional. If you choose not to carry back losses, you may be able to carry them forward to a future income year.

    This information helps you to work out whether you are eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset. If you are eligible, the amount of your tax offset may be affected by the:

    • surplus balance in your franking account at the end of the claim income year
    • amount of tax liability in the income year that you are carrying a loss back to
    • amount of net exempt income in the income year that you are carrying a loss back to.

    On this page:

    Check your eligibility

    Question for all years

    Are you a company, corporate limited partnership or public trading trust?

    Check claiming the loss carry back tax offset for 2020 losses

    Did you make a tax loss in 2020?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2020 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Did you carry on business in 2020 and have aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion for 2020 or 2019 (if you also carried on business in 2019)?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2020 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Did you have an income tax liability in 2019?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2020 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Have you met your lodgment obligations for the claim income year and the five prior income years?

    • No – you are not eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset for a 2020 loss.
    • Yes – you are eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset for a 2020 loss.

    Check claiming the loss carry back tax offset for 2021 losses

    Did you make a tax loss in 2021?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2021 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Did you carry on business in 2021 and have aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion for 2021 or 2020 (if you also carried on business in 2020)?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2021 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Did you have an income tax liability in 2019 or 2020?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2021 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Have you met your lodgment obligations for the claim income year and the five prior income years?

    • No – you are not eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset for a 2021 loss.
    • Yes – you are eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset for a 2021 loss.

    Check claiming the loss carry back tax offset for 2022 losses

    Did you make a tax loss in 2022?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2022 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Did you carry on business in 2022 and have aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion for 2022 or 2021 (if you also carried on business in 2021)?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2022 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Did you have an income tax liability in 2019, 2020 or 2021?

    • No – you are not eligible to carry back a 2022 loss.
    • Yes – go to the next question.

    Have you met your lodgment obligations for the claim income year and the five prior income years?

    • No – you are not eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset for a 2022 loss.
    • Yes – you are eligible to claim the loss carry back tax offset for a 2022 loss.

    If you are still unsure

    If you’re not sure if you are eligible, seek professional advice from your tax agent.

    Last modified: 11 Jun 2021QC 65944