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Corporate taxes

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Corporations can now manage tax accounts electronically, make online payments, and more using Revenue Online:

> Learn about Revenue Online services for corporate tax accounts.
> Read Revenue Online frequently asked questions.


Recently updated:
2013 Corporate tax law changes
2013 Credits


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Important information


Topics included on this page:​

Multistate tax compact apportionment election—protective refund claim
Oregon Supreme Court ruling—minimum tax may be reduced by credits
Excise or income tax?
Tie to federal law
Extensions and due dates
Entity and other information
Links to additional information
Archived information for years 2012 and prior


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Multistate tax compact apportionment election—protective refund claim

Per Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 314.606, the income apportionment election provided in Article III of the Multistate Tax Compact (Compact) is not available on an Oregon tax return. However, similar to the Gillette Company v. California Franchise Tax Board appeal in California, the Compact apportionment election is currently being challenged in Oregon tax court.

All corporation tax returns will be processed based on the department's long-standing position that the Compact apportionment election is not available, but taxpayers may file a protective claim to secure the right to a refund. We will defer action on all protective claims for refund until the outcome of the Oregon litigation is known. Protective claims for refund generally must be filed with us by the later of three years from the due date of the original return, or the date the original return was filed. Otherwise the statute of limitations for refund may expire.

Filing original tax returns:

All original tax returns filed using the Compact apportionment election will be adjusted. To preserve your right to a refund, file a protective claim after your original return is filed.

Protective claim filing instructions:

  • Use the same form (i.e. Form 20) as originally filed, check the "Amended" box, and show the computation of refund claim, or
  • Send a letter with authorized signature that includes:
    • Taxpayer name, FEIN, and BIN as shown on original return,​​
    • Tax years involved,
    • The amount of the refund claim for each year,
    • The detail of the apportionment formula used, and
    • Name of person to contact, phone number, and fax number.​​​
  • Write the words "Protective Claim for Refund—Compact Apportionment Election" at the top in ink. Do not use red ink.​​​
  • Mail to: REFUND, PO Box 14777, Salem, Oregon 97309-0960.
  • Retain a copy of the protective claim for your files.
IMPORTANT: Amended tax returns that use the Compact apportionment election will be denied unless identified and filed as a protective claim for refund as instructed above.
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Oregon Supreme Court ruling—minimum tax may be reduced by credits

The Oregon Supreme Court upheld the judgment of the Oregon Tax Court and ruled that a Business Energy Tax Credit (BETC) may be allowed against the corporation minimum tax. The decision (Con-way, Inc. & Affiliates v. Dept of Revenue, SC S060141) addressed only the BETC but we’re interpreting the ruling to broadly apply to corporation tax credits allowed against taxes imposed under ORS chapter 317. There are two credits that are specifically prohibited from being allowed against the minimum tax.

•    Contributions of computers or scientific equipment credit (ORS 317.151).
•    Surplus kicker credit (ORS 291.349).


May I file an amended return for this issue?

If the refund statute of limitations is still open, you may file a timely amended corporation tax return to apply tax credits against the corporation minimum tax. We can process the amended return and issue a refund. 

To file your amended return, use the form and instructions for the year you're amending with the modifications below. These modifications may require you to override computations made by your software.

Form 20
Line 16 Excise tax: Enter the greater of calculated tax or minimum tax.
Lines 29 and 31 are no longer limited by minimum tax. Do not enter less than zero. Form 20-INS
Line 22 Excise tax: Enter the greater of calculated tax or minimum tax.
Line 29 is no longer limited by minimum tax. Do not enter less than zero.
Form 20-S
The $150 minimum tax for S corporations cannot be reduced by credits per Oregon law. (ORS 314.752)

Attach a schedule that clearly identifies the credit(s) being claimed. For more information, see each year's form instructions.

If you have any questions regarding this issue please contact us at (503) 378-4988 or 
corp.help.dor@oregon.gov.​


 

Excise or income tax?
Oregon has two types of corporate taxes: excise and income.
Excise tax is the most common. Most corpora­tions don't qualify for Oregon's income tax.

Excise tax is a tax for the privilege of carrying on or doing business in Oregon. It is measured by net income. Income tax is for corporations not carrying on or doing business in Oregon, but with income from an Oregon source.

For a more detailed explanation see Foreign Corporations with Headquarters outside of Oregon (Nexus) and each year's Oregon Form 20 instructions.

Any corporation doing business in Oregon is required to register with the Secretary of State Corporation Division and file corporate excise tax returns.

If your registered corporation or insurance company isn't carrying on or doing business in Oregon and has no Oregon-source income, then you don't need to file a corporation tax return.

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Tie to federal tax law
Oregon's calculation of taxable income for C corporations begins with federal taxable income. It is modified as required under Oregon tax law.

Oregon has a rolling connection to the federal definition of taxable income with certain exceptions relevant to corporation tax law, including:
  • No connection to the qualified production activities income (QPAI) deduction (IRC §199; ORS 317.398). An addition to the Oregon return is required, effective January 1, 2005; and
  • No connection to certain subsidies excluded under IRC 139A for prescription drug plans (IRC §139A; ORS 317.401). An addition to the Oregon return is required, effective January 1, 2008.
Note: The disconnect from federal law for tax years 2009 and 2010 may have affected reporting dif­ferences between federal and Oregon expenses for sub­sequent years. If you had assets placed in service for a year beginning on or after January 1, 2009, and before January 1, 2011, and bonus depreciation on your federal return created an addition on your Oregon return, you will likely have modifications to Oregon income.
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Extensions and due dates

Extensions

For an Oregon extension when you're also filing for a federal extension: Send the federal extension with the Oregon return when you file. Check the "Extension" checkbox on your Oregon return. The Oregon extension due date is the 15th day of the month following the federal exten­sion's due date. Do not send the extension until you file your Oregon return.

If you need an extension for Oregon only, answer question 1 on federal Form 7004, write "For Oregon Only" at the top of the form, and include it with your Oregon return when you file. Check the "Extension" checkbox on your Oregon return.  The Oregon extension due date is the 15th day of the month following what would be the federal exten­sion's due date. Do not send the extension before you file your Oregon return.

More time to file does not mean more time to pay your tax. To avoid penalty and interest, mail any tax due on or before the original due date of your return. Pay electronically with Revenue Online or mail payment with Form 20-V.

Due date
Returns for calendar year filers, including all insurance companies, are due on or before April 15. Returns for fiscal year filers are due the 15th day of the month following the due date of your federal corporation return. When the 15th falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday, the due date is the next business day.

Entity and other information
Are you looking for filing or entity type information? Search our Corporation tax forms to get year specific instructions on topics such as:
  • Consolidated returns
  • Unitary business
  • Separate returns
  • Other entities
  • Assembling returns
  • Submitting returns

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