Tax credits give Georgia businesses the opportunity to minimize or even eliminate state corporate income tax. They apply to all qualifying companies - large, small and in between - rooted in Georgia or new to the state.
Typically, corporate income tax credits apply to 50 percent of a company’s state tax liability in a given year. But in some cases, they can offset up to 100 percent of corporate income tax as well as payroll withholding liability.
The tax credits referenced here are extended by the state of Georgia, so be sure to check with city and county governments to identify local incentives. In addition, Georgia offers tax exemptions to support business growth.
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Here are the primary tax credits Georgia extends to new and existing companies:
Job Tax Credit
Businesses in seven strategic industries can earn as much as $4,000 in annual tax savings for each new job created, for up to five years. The exact value of the job credits depends on two factors - how many jobs are created, and where.
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Quality Jobs Tax Credit
Companies that create at least 50 jobs in a 12-month period - at wages that are at least 10 percent higher than the county average - qualify for a tax credit of $2,500 to $5,000 per job.
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Port Tax Credit Bonus
Georgia companies that increase imports or exports through a Georgia port by at least 10 percent can qualify for a bonus tax credit. Two options are offered: an addition of $1,250 to the job tax credit or an adjustment in the investment tax credit.
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Work Opportunity Tax Credit
Georgia’s Department of Labor administers a federal tax credit to Georgia companies that hire individuals who have faced barriers to employment. The tax credit ranges from $1,200 to $9,000 per hire.
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Mega Project Tax Credit
Businesses that employ at least 1,800 “net new” employees and have either a minimum annual payroll of $150 million or make a minimum $450 million investment in Georgia qualify for the mega project tax credit.
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Investment Tax Credit
Companies in manufacturing or telecommunications support that have operated in Georgia for at least three years are eligible to earn investment tax credits for upgrades or expansions. Credit earned amounts to 1 percent to 8 percent of qualified capital investments of $50,000 or more.
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OPTIONAL INVESTMENT TAX CREDIT
Optional investment tax credits reward growing companies for making major investments in Georgia. The exact value of the optional investment tax credits depends on three factors: how much is invested; where the investment is made in Georgia; and the change in a company’s tax liability.
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Research and Development Tax Credit
Companies that increase qualified research spending may qualify for an R&D tax credit equal to a portion of that spending increase.
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Retraining Tax Credit
Georgia businesses may offset their investment in retraining employees to use new equipment or learn new skills through a retraining tax credit. The credit equals 50 percent of direct training expenses, up to $500 credit per full-time employee, per training program.
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Film, Television and Digital Entertainment Tax Credit
Film and television companies may receive a tax credit of up to 30 percent of money spent on production and post-production in Georgia, either in a single production or on multiple projects. Minimum spending amount is $500,000. Sales and use tax exemptions can save as much as an additional 8 percent.
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