This study was carried out to determine factors affecting tuberculosis retreatment defaults in Nanded, India. All patients registered as tuberculosis retreatment cases (n = 107 excluding deaths during treatment) were interviewed by home visits. Their sociodemographic characteristics and treatment history were recorded and later compared with their treatment outcomes. Among the patients registered for re-treatment of tuberculosis (n = 112), 24 (21.4%) defaulted on treatment. The rate of default was 25.8% among those who had previously defaulted on treatment. Those who were employed, illiterate and alcoholics were 3.5, 3.5 and 3.4 times more likely to default, respectively, than others; these differences were significant.