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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What Is the Significance of Virtual Currency Not Being Taxed as Currency?

Virtual currencies are not currently accepted as the legal tender or “fiat” currency of any country. In the United States, the IRS has stated its view that convertible virtual currency is property, subject to the general tax rules that apply to property, and is not foreign currency. As such, virtual currency does not qualify for the special tax rules available to foreign currency transactions. This article explores the major consequences of this rule on taxpayers. Access the full article here.

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Can a Virtual Currency Position Be Treated as a Security for Tax Purposes?

Some virtual currency units and positions are treated as securities by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and US courts. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), however, has told taxpayers that it views convertible virtual currency as property, not foreign currency, for federal tax purposes. Lacking clear guidance from the IRS or the Department of the Treasury, this article addresses issues that may help determine whether Internal Revenue Code provisions that apply to securities might also apply to transactions involving virtual currencies and positions. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup August 3, 2020 – August 7, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of August 3, 2020 – August 7, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. August 3, 2020: The IRS published a news release announcing that James Lee will become the new chief of IRS Criminal Investigation on October 1, 2020.   August 4, 2020: The IRS published a notice and request for comments concerning Form 3800 (General Business Credit), which is the form taxpayers file to claim any of the general business credits. Comments are due on or before October 5, 2020. August 4, 2020: The IRS published corrections to final regulations under 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 or accrued pursuant to hybrid arrangements, which...

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Can a Virtual Currency Position Be Treated as a Commodity for Tax Purposes?

Some virtual currency units and positions are treated as commodities by Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and US courts. The IRS has told taxpayers that it views convertible virtual currency as property, not foreign currency, for federal tax purposes. Lacking clear guidance from either the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or the Department of the Treasury, this article addresses issues that may help determine whether Internal Revenue Code provisions that apply to commodities might also apply to transactions involving virtual currencies and positions. Access the full article here.

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Virtual Currency Losses Disallowed on Infrequent Activities

If a taxpayer’s virtual currency activities are too infrequent to rise to the level of investment activities or do not qualify as trader or dealer activities, losses associated with virtual currency transactions are not deductible. This article explores tax-law issues that arise in the context of "personal use virtual currency" and reminds taxpayers to be aware of both their intent when acquiring or holding virtual currency and the potential tax implications arising from such activities. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup July 27 – July 31, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of July 27, 2020 – July 31, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. July 28, 2020: The IRS issued final regulations providing guidance about the limitation on the deduction for business interest expense after amendment of the Internal Revenue Code (Code) by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). The regulations provide guidance to taxpayers on how to calculate the limitation, what constitutes interest for purposes of the limitation, which taxpayers and trades or businesses are subject to the limitation and how the limitation applies in consolidated group, partnership, international and other contexts. July 28, 2020: The IRS published a notice of proposed rulemaking concerning rules that provide additional...

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Specific Identification of Virtual Currency Positions

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) views convertible virtual currency as property, not foreign currency. As such, taxpayers must record and track the tax basis of each unit of virtual currency held in order to properly report taxable gain or loss when disposing of a unit or units of virtual currency. This article reviews the IRS’s position with respect to the identification and tax basis of such units. Access the full article here.

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The Legal Effect of IRS Pronouncements on Virtual Currency

Given limited guidance by US tax authorities regarding taxation of virtual currency activities, taxpayers with such holdings may find themselves in uncharted territory as to whether to take positions that are contrary to IRS pronouncements. This article explores relevant notices, rulings and FAQs, and reviews the types of deference that courts tend to put on different types of IRS interpretations and guidance. Access the full article here.

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Weekly IRS Roundup July 20 – July 24, 2020

Presented below is our summary of significant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance and relevant tax matters for the week of July 20, 2020 – July 24, 2020. Additionally, for continuing updates on the tax impact of COVID-19, please visit our resource page here. July 20, 2020: The IRS published a news release on after-tax-day tips for taxpayers who missed the July 15, 2020, tax deadline and did not request an extension. The tips include advice on obtaining a refund and on reducing penalties and interest. July 20, 2020: The IRS released public comments on the 2020-21 Priority Guidance Plan in response to Notice 2020-47, which invited the public to submit recommendations for items to be included on the 2020-2021 Priority Guidance Plan. The US Department of the Treasury and the IRS use the Priority Guidance Plan each year to identify and prioritize the tax issues that should be addressed through regulations, revenue rulings, revenue procedures, notices and other...

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