Beginning Tax Year 2017, the U.S. federal Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will now require some taxation of cryptocurrency that may affect estate planners and executors. As of this tax season, capital gains and losses on property transactions involving cryptocurrency, for example, must now be reported to the IRS (Notice 2014-21). Before the current tax year, the IRS offered exemption for “like kind exchanges” of crypto assets allowing swaps of digital currency for other assets. With IRS rule changes, and latest insights into the fluctuation of cryptocurrency value, make those assets a bit less attractive to investors than in recent years.
Capital Gains, Estate Tax, ICOs
If market analysts have advocated cryptocurrency as an estate asset in the past several years, the rule reform will impact investors seeking tax-exemption from Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin earnings. Once considered property rather than fiat currency by the IRS, the rules of have changed. The rules now also distinguish between the tax-exempt proceeds of equity funded trades, and cryptocurrency Initial coin offerings (ICOs), requiring that proceeds from the latter be treated as taxable income. In the short-term, it is likely that investors, including those responsible for estate trusts, will continue to invest in tax-exempt ICOs offered by off-shore banking institutions.