Deferred Tax Asset


DEFINITION of 'Deferred Tax Asset'

Deferred tax assets are created due to taxes paid or carried forward but not yet recognized in the income statement. Its value is calculated by taking into account financial reporting standards for book income and the jurisdictional tax authority's rules for taxable income. For example, deferred tax assets can be created due to the tax authority recognizing revenue or expenses at different times than that of an accounting standard. This asset helps in reducing the company’s future tax liability. It is important to note that a deferred tax asset will only be recognized when the difference between the loss-value or depreciation of the asset is expect to offset future profit.

Reasons deferred tax assets arise include:


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BREAKING DOWN 'Deferred Tax Asset'

For example, a computer manufacturing company estimates based on previous lines of production that the probability a computer will be sent back for warranty repairs in the next year is 2% out of the total production. If the company's total revenue in year 1 is $3,000 and the warranty expense is $60 (2% * $3,000) then the company's taxable income is $2,940. However most tax authorities do not allow companies to deduct expenses based on expected warranties, thus the company would actually require to pay taxes on the full $3,000.

If the tax rate for the company is 30% then:

The difference of $18 ($900 - $ 882) between the taxes payable in the income statement and the taxes payable to the tax authority is considered the deferred tax asset.

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  1. Who is eligible to hold a deferred tax asset?

    Deferred tax assets can be held by an enterprise that expects to realize a future tax benefit. Examples of this include companies ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How is a deferred tax asset taxed?

    With deferred tax assets, taxes have been paid or carried forward but not yet recognized as a normal asset by the firm in ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Can working capital be depreciated?

    Working capital as current assets cannot be depreciated the way long-term, fixed assets are. In accounting, depreciation ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Do working capital funds expire?

    While working capital funds do not expire, the working capital figure does change over time. This is because it is calculated ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Does the IRS charge interest on penalties?

    The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) charges interest on any overdue taxes owed, but it does not charge interest on penalties. ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Are tax shelters legal in Canada?

    Most tax shelters are legal in Canada. However, there have been illegal tax shelter scams that the Canada Revenue Agency ... Read Full Answer >>

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