Bennett Thrasher, one of the nation’s largest and fastest-growing certified public accounting and consulting firms, is one of six firms in the country approved by the Georgia Department of Revenue (DOR) to conduct new mandatory film tax credit audits for production companies.
In recent years, Georgia has become one of the largest film and television production locations in the world. Pursuant to an economic impact study issued by the Georgia Tech Center for Economic Development Research, Georgia’s entertainment industry had an estimated $8.6 billion economic impact in FY 2017 alone.
The rapid growth of the entertainment industry led the Georgia General Assembly to impose tighter fiscal controls over the program. In the FY 2020 session, HB 1037 included mandatory audit requirements for larger productions phased in over a two-year period. For projects certified by the Georgia Film Office on or after January 1, 2021, audits are required for productions claiming film tax credits in excess of $2.5 million. For projects certified on or after January 1, 2022, audits are mandatory for projects claiming credits in excess of $1.25 million. For projects certified on or after January 1, 2023, all projects claiming film tax credits must be audited. Upon request, these audits can be performed by outside accounting firms that are pre-approved by the Georgia Department of Revenue.
On June 10, 2021, Bennett Thrasher was selected as one of only six firms nationwide eligible to perform such audits based on the firm’s extensive experience with production incentive audits in Georgia and other film incentive states.
“Bennett Thrasher has been at the forefront of production incentive issues in Georgia,” said Peter Stathopoulos, leader of Bennett Thrasher’s Entertainment practice, and who also serves as head of governmental affairs for the Georgia Production Partnership and is on the Steering Committee of the Georgia Screen Entertainment Coalition.
Bennett Thrasher has worked with nearly all major film and television studios throughout the United States. They provide accounting and consulting guidance for production and entertainment companies with their Mandatory Film Tax Credit Audit Application, audit review, and film tax credit approval.