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Taxation of Virtual Currency Mining Activities

Proof of work (PoW)—one of the consensus methodologies through which blockchain (digital ledger) transactions can be validated—relies on data miners whose mining activities involve solving complex mathematical calculations. This article discusses key tax issues for miners and the IRS’s preliminary views involving taxation of Bitcoin PoW mining activities. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup August 31 – September 4, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of August 31, 2020 – September 4, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. September 1, 2020: The IRS released for publication in the federal register final regulations providing additional guidance on the base erosion and anti-abuse tax (BEAT) imposed on certain large corporate taxpayers with respect to certain payments made to foreign related parties. The final regulations affect corporations with substantial gross receipts that make payments to foreign related parties. September 1, 2020: The IRS announced the launch of the Bipartisan Budget Act (BBA) Centralized Partnership Audit Regime webpage. The Centralized Partnership Audit Regime replaces the Tax Equity and Fiscal Responsibility Act (TEFRA) and the electing large partnership rules. The centralized partnership...

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Can Virtual Currency Traders Elect into Special Rules that Allow Current Deductions for Trading Losses?

Traders in virtual currency seeking to deduct trading losses and avoid application of the capital loss limitations would want to elect into the special tax rules found at IRC § 475(f). However, such taxpayers should analyze the definitions of “securities” and “commodities,” determine whether they are eligible for either of the trader elections, and consider the federal and state tax implications of making such an election. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup August 24 – August 28, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of August 24, 2020 – August 28, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. August 24 2020: The IRS published a memorandum concerning guidance to the field on the criteria that should be applied in considering if a request for designation for litigation should be made to the Office of Chief Counsel. The memorandum also provides interim guidance on the requirements of Section 1001 of the Taxpayer First Act (TFA) with respect to the limitation on designation of cases as not eligible for referral to the IRS Independent Office of Appeals. August 25, 2020: The IRS published a Summer 2020 Statistics of Income Bulletin. The Summer 2020 Bulletin focuses individual income tax shares, 2017; foreign recipients of US income, calendar year 2017; effects of post-filing adjustments on...

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When Can Bitcoin Positions Be Taxed as Mixed Straddles Subject to the Special Mixed Straddle Rules?

Taxpayers who enter into offsetting positions in actively traded personal property where one or more—but not all—of the positions making up a straddle are taxed as section 1256 contracts (while another offsetting position is not a section 1256 contract) are subject to the mixed straddle rules. Potential adverse consequences can be magnified or made more complex by application of these special rules. This article can help taxpayers understand and take action to minimize or avoid these consequences when such positions involve virtual currencies. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup August 17 – August 21, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of August 17, 2020 – August 21, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. August 19, 2020: The IRS requested comments from large corporate taxpayers currently utilizing the procedures under Revenue Procedure 94-69 to disclose changes in tax positions after the opening of an examination. The IRS is considering obsoleting Revenue Procedure 94-69, which is available to a small group of large corporate taxpayers. Revenue Procedure 94-69 provides special procedures for taxpayers that are subject to the (former) Coordinated Examination Program to show additional tax due or make disclosures to avoid the imposition of accuracy-related penalties for negligence, disregard of rules or regulations or substantial understatement of income tax under sections 6662(b)(1) and (b)(2)....

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Special Tax Rules Apply to Bitcoin Futures and Options

Special tax rules require taxpayers to treat gains on certain virtual currency positions as taxable even though they still hold their positions. These rules apply to futures and options that qualify as section 1256 contracts, which is potentially relevant to taxpayers buying, selling and holding Bitcoin futures and options, as well as Ether futures and other virtual currencies. This article reviews a number of issues that arise—or may arise in the future—for taxpayers with virtual currency positions. Access the full article here.

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When Virtual Currency Positions Are Subject to the Straddle Rule

Taxpayers who hold virtual currency positions may be subject to the tax straddle rules that require them to defer losses on one offsetting position to the extent of unrecognized gain on other offsetting positions. This article explores guidance (or the lack thereof) relating to actively traded personal property, offsetting positions and other issues as applied to virtual currency holdings. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup August 10 – August 14, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of August 10, 2020 – August 14, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. August 10, 2020: The IRS published corrections to a notice of proposed rulemaking related to section 245A(e) (Hybrid Dividends) that was published in the Federal Register on April 8, 2020. The notice contained proposed regulations that adjust hybrid deduction accounts to take into account earnings and profits of a controlled foreign corporation that are included in income by a US shareholder. The corrections are effective on August 11, 2020. August 10, 2020: The IRS published corrections to final regulations from Treasury Decision 9896 that were published in the Federal Register on Wednesday, April 8, 2020. The final regulations provide guidance regarding hybrid dividends and certain amounts paid...

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