What useful life should be considered when estimating the TAB factor of an intangible asset?

Amortisation of intangible assets is not always tax deductible. Its deductibility depends on the corporate income tax legislation of single countries. Most countries define maximum amortisation rates or minimum number of years in which the amortisation of intangible assets can be deducted, if at all. This page displays the legal tax amortisation periods of the main types of intangible assets.

Summary Table

CountryPatentsTechnologyTrademarkCustomer relationships GoodwillLast update
Australia205no TABno TABno TABApr 2016

Further Detail and Source Legislation

Tax amortisation of intangibles in Australia is explained in the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997[1] with amendments up to Act No. 50 of 2012.

Depreciating assets are listed in Subsection (2) of Section 40.30[2] of the Act.
Patents, licenses and software are included in the list but goodwill, trademarks and customer relationships are excluded.

As of July 2015, the useful life of In-house software increased from 4 years to 5.

Section 40.95[3] of the Act shows a table with the effective life of intangible depreciating assets.

Asset typeUseful life (years)
Standard patent20
Innovation patent8
Petty patent6
Registered design15
CopyrightMin(25,End of copyright)
A licenceTerm of the licence
A licence relating to a copyright Min(25,End of licence)
In-house software5
Spectrum licenceTerm of the licence
Datacasting transmitter licence15
Telecommunications site access rightTerm of the right

  1. ^ Income Tax Assessment Act 1997
  2. ^ Section 40.30 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997
  3. ^ Section 40.95 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997

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