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IRS Crypto tax AUDIT notice probes deep – Key Takeaways & next steps

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IRS TAX Form

What you can expect in this article?

  • Deeper look at the IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice letter
  • Key takeaways from this audit notice you need to know
  • Why this notice shows lack of IRS’s awareness about crypto space
  • Next steps if you have received the IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice
  • Will you need representation if you received this IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice?
  • Is using Crypto tax software catch all strategy?

An IRS Crypto tax audit notice has been circulating on Reddit. Originally posted by user Ubuntaire titled “Anyone wants to see what an IRS audit notice looks like?” has been making waves on social media.

If this is a genuine tax audit notice, the kind of detail that IRS seeks is pretty far reaching. Some of the Redditors have commented on this audit to be a ‘colonoscopy’ and ‘probe’.  

The crypto tax audit notice page posted on Reddit has been replicated below.

_________________________________________________________________________

Below is the text format of the IRS Notice, find the original here.

To make Examination as brief as possible, please have the following information available: 

  • A copy of your 2017 tax return

Provide the following for all virtual currency transactions during the time period 01/01/2017-12/31/2017

  • Detailed records for the acquisition and disposition of any virtual currency (domestic or international), including but not limited to:

o   Emails, screen prints, hardcopy prints, and transaction receipts maintained by the taxpayer or provided by any third-party such as an exchange, broker, or peer-to-peer facilitator (e.g. Paxful, Localbitcoins.com)

o   Wire transfer or direct deposit records, including automated clearing house (ACH) and electronic funds transfer (EFT) records.

o   List of all virtual currency kiosk (i.e., BTM or cryptocurrency kiosk or ATM) locations used along with copies of any transaction receipts or acknowledgements whether provided electronically or in paper.

o   A detailed list of cryptocurrency transactions involving cash including dates, input/output counterparties involved in the transaction, and the cryptocurrency involved

o   All correspondence (I.e., emails, texts, tweets, etc.) with all counterparties to any virtual currency transactions

o   List of all virtual currency received from hard forks, faucets, tipping, or any other method where a sale, buy, or exchange was not initiated by the receiver of cryptocurrency (commonly called airdrops), including date, type, and amount of virtual currency received with the date of sale, or other disposition, including amounts and description of what was received

o   Explanation of the method used to compute basis relating to the sale or other disposition of virtual currency

o   Records reflecting the valuation of any sale or other disposition of virtual currency at the time of acquisition and disposition

  • Records relating to any expenses paid or items purchased (whether domestic or international) using virtual currency
  • List of all blockchain addresses owned or controlled by taxpayer
  • Records of all transactions relating to lending of virtual currency or use of virtual currency as collateral for loan, including, but not limited to, loan agreements, promissory notes, ledgers, transaction receipts, pledge, security, or collateralization agreements
  • List of all digital currency exchanges (DCE) and peer-to-peer (P2P) facilitators (e.g., Coinbase, Paxful or Localbitcoins.com) (foreign and domestic) with associated user Ids, email addresses, IP addresses, and account numbers relating to those platforms
  • List of all counterparties for any P2P virtual currency transactions (identifying the on-chain and off-chain transactions), email address, user IDs transactions.

This is not an all-inclusive list. Requests for additional information may be made if considered necessary. 

_______________________________________________________________________

Key takeaways from the IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice

IRS seems to be coming hard and mighty at the folks who have either ignored to report their cryptocurrency taxes or have not reported everything. This particular IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice pertains to 2017 tax year. Let’s look at some of the key takeaways from this notice.

Emails and correspondence requested

  • IRS is asking for emails, hard copy prints, transaction receipts to substantiate the information provided by you on your tax returns. If you have knowingly ignored to disclose your crypto transactions – then IRS seems to know exactly how to get your information.

Best Crypto tax software

Airdrops, Hardforks, faucets and tipping

  • Probably one of the trickiest and most difficult of all the requests on this notice is the information about Airdrops, Hardforks, faucets and tipping information. Forget about the users keeping track of this information, it is unclear as to how IRS is going to track this information since most of the airdrops and faucet drops are probably worth nothing and they may have been long forgotten because they were worth nothing.

Even if they were worth something, it is quite difficult (or even impossible) for individuals to keep track of the number of places one would have given their wallet address to receive something.

List of blockchain addresses owned

  • Creating wallet addresses is free and happens in seconds.  As such, many people would have created numerous addresses on various wallets and may have never used them. As such, it is unclear why the IRS would simply ask for ALL blockchain addresses ‘controlled’ by taxpayers, instead of saying ‘blockchain addresses controlled by taxpayer with any crypto transactions’.

All in all, the language is designed to be all inclusive and being a relatively new technology – IRS covered all the known basis where a transaction history might live.

Why this notice shows lack of IRS’s awareness about crypto space?

The request shows the shortage of understanding on the IRS’s side as to how the airdrops and other rewards work.  We think a think tank and revisit on certain aspects of Crypto space is required from the IRS side to develop a practical framework:

  • Set de minimis to report airdrops and rewards
  • For the projects that go bust or out of business should be exempt from reporting 
  • Proposal to Assume ‘0’ as cost basis and have reporting mandated on “sale” rather than receipt
  • Open up a public access to track wallet address based transactions so that people can reconcile what they have/remember with IRS records, this will help honest taxpayers who may otherwise inadvertently miss certain transactions

Those are our thoughts on what needs to change to make these reporting requirements more sensible for an average taxpayer with average technical sophistication.

best Crypto Tax Software

Next steps if you have received the IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice

Here are few things you should do, in our opinion:

  • Put together the documents substantiating what has been reported on the tax returns
  • Scour through all of your wallets and check the transactions in the relevant tax year
  • Create a checklist (ideally in a spreadsheet) to track all of your wallets and related transactions
  • Print out any emails, correspondence and other transaction details, and arrange them in order of occurrence (date) 
  • Check to see if you can hire a Crypto Tax Advisor.  Here are the key things you need to look in a crypto tax advisor
  • In some cases, depending on the seriousness, you might need a tax attorney to represent you to avoid complications

Is representation required if you receive this IRS Crypto Tax Audit Notice?

It is unclear as to what happens if you are unable to track down your emails or just don’t have the information about your airdrops, hard forks, faucets and tipping details.  What if you have long forgotten or do not have access to those wallets anymore?  

Will the IRS subpoena your emails and electronic communication?

Will the IRS subpoena your bank accounts and credit card accounts?

How long will this IRS Crypto Tax Audit take to resolve?

What implications will it have on your future taxes?

Given these and other questions that we have not yet thought of to ask, in our opinion, we think it would help to have proper legal representation when dealing with this IRS Crypto Tax Audit notice.

Is using Crypto tax software ‘catch all’ strategy?

If you have used crypto tax software, it might help you document your ‘best efforts’ in reporting the crypto transactions for taxes, however, it is not a panacea to your tax woes.  

For starters, crypto tax software only picks up the transactions that you link through an API.  Most crypto tax software do not pick transactions that happen from wallet to wallet outside the exchange.

If you have used the Best Crypto Tax Software and connected all of your exchanges and do not have transactions outside of these exchanges, chances are, you may not get the IRS Crypto tax notice at all.

The fact that one has received the IRS Audit notice might indicate that you have either ignored to report certain transactions or have not reported them at all.

Either way, go back and check all of your crypto transactions, keep the documentation ready.

Best Crypto tax Software

Do NOT underestimate IRS’s ability or outreach

Even when we were mocked for suggesting to report All of your crypto transactions on your tax returns, we continued to maintain our stand.  

All those social media trolls are not going to come to your rescue when IRS knocks on your door.  

If you are among those who received this IRS Crypto Tax Audit Notice, do not ignore it thinking that IRS will not have the know-how or outreach, because, both of those assumptions could lead to your peril.  

We don’t mean to sound apocalyptic about these affairs and our genuine hope is to encourage you to take the right action as per the law.  Whether that is using a representation or doing it on your own is your choice as long as you do not simply throw this IRS Crypto Tax Audit Notice in the dustbin. 

Immediate tax article references that might be of interest to you:

Thank you for reading and sharing this article.  You can highlight any text on this page to share on social media.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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CryptoSpace

6 Massive Benefits of Cryptocurrency

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Benefits of Cryptocurrency

It is normal to be hesitant about using cryptocurrency as the medium of financial transactions. 

There is a school of thought which believes, it is a domain suitable for criminals, fraudsters, and terrorists. Cryptocurrencies allow them to maintain anonymity for discreet transactions and ransomware scams.

However, the increasing acceptance of Bitcoin as a digital currency has initiated a positive perspective around this mode. It brings a distinct set of pros for the users, making them overlook the risks tag along.

According to the Finder, a post on social media surfaces about Bitcoin every three seconds. If we do the math, it means 1203 posts pop up per hour, making it to 20 posts per minute.

A more general view on the crypto landscape speaks of its overall growth, too. Block Social tells us how cryptocurrency exchanges around the globe have exceeded 300 during 2020.

In fact, the success of crypto shows us the loopholes of the traditional banking system. If you, too, want to leap on this bandwagon and aren’t sure about your next move, this is the right place. Our blog sheds light on the positive aspects of cryptocurrency that make it a more established form of financial trade. 

Healthereum

1. Easy transactions

When dealing with brokers or legal representatives, you have to pay the transaction fee from time to time. This comes along with immense paperwork, commission, brokerage charges, and so much more. Using cryptocurrency eliminates the need for a middle man. The transaction changes into a one-to-one affair taking place on a secure network.

No wonder Forbes stated that adopting blockchain technology can save financial organizations around $12 billion yearly. A deduction of extra charges from third parties and reduced operations cost is saving millions for huge organizations.

Moreover, the transactions are transparent, making it easier for you to establish audit trials. There is no more confusion over who pays whom. All parties involved in the transaction know each other quite well. Accountability on each party grows.

2. Asset transfers

A financial analyst rightfully describes cryptocurrency blockchain to be a “large property rights database.” On the one hand, it helps execute and enforce two-party contracts on commodities such as real estate and automobiles. At the same time, it also facilitates special modes of transfer. 

As per Born2Invest, Bitcoin alone is responsible for an average of 350 000 daily transactions on the Blockchain. Meanwhile, Coinbase has 30 million cryptocurrency users (Block Social). The increasing figures of each crypto speak of its acceptance worldwide.

The parties involved in asset transfer can design contracts and add third-party approvals at a later date. It also helps to reference the external facts and gives the parties exclusive governance of their account. It reduces the time and money involved in asset transfers. Perhaps this is why US federal government spending on Blockchain shall reach $123.5 million by 2022.

3. Confidential transactions

Cryptocurrency purchases remain discreet. Unless a user voluntarily publishes his transactions, the purchase is never associated with their identity. In official scenarios, such as when you put your cars for sale, the parties must reveal an association with their cryptocurrencies. It helps to establish trust and relevance.

Within the cash/credit system, your entire transaction history turns into a reference document for the banks/credit agencies involved. On the contrary, cryptocurrency is a transaction that is a unique exchange between two parties. They can negotiate and agree on preferable terms. The information exchange takes place on the “push” basis. This means you transmit only that which you wish to send to the recipient and nothing else.

It keeps your financial history secure and guards you against identity theft. Chances of which are quite high under the traditional transaction system. 

On top of this, the combination of Blockchain with IoT is considered revolutionary by the experts. This has accelerated data exchange, lowering the operation costs, and improved the security of files. Your Tech Diet predicted that 75% of the IoT industry would adopt Blockchain technology by the end of 2020. Lack of exposure is, thus, something the entire industry is looking for.

4. Transaction Fee

You have probably faced hefty monthly account statements from your bank/credit companies. The transaction fee charged at every transaction you have made might leave you shocked. The whopping fee of multiple transactions can take you by surprise at the end of each month.

In the case of cryptocurrency exchange, the data miners receive their share from the cryptocurrency network involved. Transaction fee does not apply as the remote and separate computer systems that do the number-crunching get a pretty fair share. 

According to Investopedia, the Bitcoin reward for miners halves for every 210 000 blocks added to the chain. Nonetheless, this system has freed the transaction parties to pay the fee, making it the most feasible. 

However, there might be some external fee involved if you engage a third-party management service to maintain the crypto wallet. These charges are likely to be quite less than the transaction charges levied by the traditional banking system. 

5. Hold Ownership

The traditional banking system works in a manner where the amount goes to the nominee if a person passes away. The chances of the account closing are quite high when you infringe the terms of their services. Unlike this framework, digital currencies give you the sole ownership of private and public encryption keys. This makes it easier for you to identify the encryption network.

6. High security

Once a party authorizes the cryptocurrency transfer, they cannot reverse it. This is not the case in “charge-back” transactions allowed by the credit companies. Cryptocurrency gives you reliable encryption throughout the transaction process to keep it protected from bugs and malicious entities.

Systems like Binance Smart Chain are enabling people to do more with BTC.

Final Thoughts 

Cryptocurrency is taking the financial world by storm, and we know the reasons why. It is about time you kickstart your digital finances journey and make the most out of it. Who knows what surprises are about to come later in this landscape!

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. We appreciate you.

Stay safe and healthy!

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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Cardano or PolkaDot? Which One to Invest In?

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Cardano vs Polkadot

There is a new battle in the crypto space.  Cardano (ADA) and PolkaDot (DOT) maximalists are headbutting as to which project is better and why.

The conversations are intense to say the least and we will try to provide our view on which one we are leaning toward and the reasons why, in this rather short article.

Just to be clear, we are invested in both ADA and DOT so we have a vested interest in both projects, however, we are now asked to pick one over the other and that brings us to this article.

Decentralization

The whole spirit of cryptocurrencies is the concept of decentralization, however, some of the more popular projects don’t seem to have a grasp of what that means.

Diem (previously Libra) or XRP etc., are controlled by a group for validators who could, in theory, easily collude, in our view.

With DOT, things are not as centralized as some other projects with about 1000 validators securing the platform.

However, ADA has the most number of nodes and has most of its circulating supply staked on its wallet. The community behind ADA has biggest proponents of decentralized frameworks.

ADA: 8 (top 10 is reserved for BTC)

DOT: 6

Team

Cardano boasts the maximum number of Ph.Ds on its team and has a more decentralized team structure.  You have teams that are working exclusively on wallet and staking while you have other teams focusing on interoperability. Yet, another team is focused on bridging projects from Ethereum to Cardano.

DOT has the ammunition of Gavin behind it. He is undoubtedly one of the brilliant minds in the space. 

However, as we learned in basic math, sum total is always greater than an individual unit.  This applies more aptly with these projects. In our opinion, Cardano has a greater edge when it comes to collective human capital.

Having Charles Hoskinson helps ADAs impression.

ADA: 8

DOT: 6

Social presence

There is no competition when it comes to social presence and engaging the community when it comes to the leaders of these two projects.

While DOT’s founder Gavin might come out as eccentric and polished in the social media, Charles takes the cake in engaging with his audience and making things sensible for the community.

ADA: 9 

DOT: 7

On a mission

Whenever you hear Charles speak about ADA you will immediately understand that he is on a mission to bring the marvels of blockchain enabled financial services to all corners of the world.

Cardano’s team is now focused on the South Africa continent to bring the under-previleged onto the world commerce through their platform. They are even close to signing a contract with Ethiopia government in 2021.

While DOT is catapulting the entire space forward it just lacks the same charm that comes with a project on a grandiose mission.

ADA: 8

DOT: 6 

Miscellaneous considerations 

Market cap: ADA has $20 Billion market cap while DOT has $19 Billion, as such they are on par with each other when it comes to valuation. The large cap is a stamp of approval from the crypto community.

Price: ADA is at around 60 cents while DOT has been stabilising at $20 at the time of this writing. When the newbies come to the market and they see they cannot afford Bitcoin or Ethereum, they will most likely go after the projects that are under $1. This does not mean DOT is inferior, it is just an edge that low priced tokens have over higher priced projects. It’s just a newbie mindset that drives higher demand during bull runs to lower priced projects.

Inflationary supply

DOT has an inflationary supply model while ADAs supply is capped.

Yes, DOTs supply is far larger than DOT, however, there is no new minting on ADA when compared to DOT.

Mainnet

DOTs technology is operational and is onboarding projects already.  ADA is scheduled to launch its mainnet this month (Feb 2021). ADA has been in works for many years now and if their product matches the hype and the wait – then it may not matter as much that they are late to the party. However, if there are issues with their mainnet – it may not bode well for ADA.

Conclusion: Total score

ADA: 33

DOT: 25

If you are a DOT fan you might think this score is skewed.   If you are an ADA fan you might think it should score perfect points in all fronts.

In fact, there are some areas where DOT is a clear winner like having a functioning platform. ADA, in our opinion, takes the prize with clear fandom, gigantic mission and a total brainiac project. 

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. We appreciate you.

Stay safe and healthy!

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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Best of the Best YouTube Channels to Follow for your Crypto Fix

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Best Crypto Youtubers

There are literally 100s of crypto-experts on YouTube who claim to have cracked the secret code that can make you millions in crypto riches. 

Who should you follow?  

We have followed many YouTubers, subscribing and unsubscribing to avoid the noise and after having been in this space for over 4 years, we have narrowed our favorite crypto YouTube channels to just a few.

In this article, we will show you our favorite YouTubers and what we like about each one of them. 

Overall number 1: Coin Bureau

coin bureau When it comes to deep analysis, composed demeanor and outright professional crypto channel in the entire space, we have not come across anyone better than Guy.  

Not only is he great at the reviews and in depth analysis, if you have followed the channel long enough you will realize that he reviews the gems long before others pick on the momentum.  

He picks solid projects, never shills a shitty project to his followers and is upfront about his views which he backs up with solid research.

This is the best no-shill and no bull crypto channel on YouTube in our view.

Best original content: Chico Crypto

chico crypto review

If you love a bit of quirky, goofy and somewhat out there viewpoints on the crypto space then there is no one better than Tyler at Chico Crypto. 

His investigation stretches the boundaries of research (and sometimes common sense) but he does do a bang up job on every video.  

I am yet to come across a boring video on this channel.  I will admit that his live streams can be a drag sometimes but his followers seem to relish his presence.

You may not like or agree with what Tyler presents on this channel but you will absolutely be floored by the originality.   

Best TA: TIED: Crypto Capital Venture & Tyler S

                         Crypto Capital Venture Tyler S crypto

With under 90K subscribers at the time of this writing, Dan may not be the most popular of the Crypto channels [yet] but his TA analysis is just so easy to follow.

Dan makes it easy for non-technical folks to understand what’s going on in the market in the language of TA.

There are other folks on YouTube who are good at TA but their videos are so obnoxious that they leave you with a massive headache.  

Not Dan’s Crypto Capital Venture channel.   Dan walks you through the markets in such a calm, composed and professional manner that you might start caring about those candles.

We are forced to share the Best Title for crypto TA on YouTube with Tyler S. 

Tyler’s expertise on TAs is quite awesome and he has a funny way of delivering it too.  

Best expertise on the markets: Alessio Rastani

Allesio RastaniIt doesn’t matter if you are just lurking around the crypto markets or if you trade in the traditional markets…Alessio is one of the best guys on YouTube for great insights into the broad market and its impact on Crypto.

While everyone on YouTube (not the people on this list, of course) is either quick to FOMO or FUD, Alessio is just grounded in fundamentals and technicals.

When you are high on FOMO, he can bring you to the ground.

When you are getting buried in FUD, he can lift you up with facts, not false hopium.

Alessio is personable, professional and an honest guy to follow to understand the markets ahead of others.

Best round up of the market: AltCoin Daily

Altcoin DailyWant to stay up-to-date on what’s happening in the crypto space but don’t have time to keep up?  

Fear not. AltCoin Daily got you covered.

This channel is just a gem among the channels that bring crypto market updates in a concise and palatable format.

You can sense the dedication in the way Austin brings the updates and his opinions in front of his audience. No wonder the channel has recently hit over 420K subscribers.

Best humble and honest take: Crazy 4 Cryptos

Crazy 4 crypto

What does Crypto mean to you?

Most people will say ‘Freedom’, yet, most of the YouTubers we see on the Tube will be broadcasting from their bedrooms or backyards (nothing wrong with that) but not Dave.

He has been in Thailand and streams his videos directly from the beach.

You will immediately connect with his simpleton style and honest reviews.  

He has been touting about Theta when it was trading in cents and now those who followed him are very happy.

Besides Theta, Dave talks about a lot of topics in terms of storing your coins, being careful with people and how to have a long-term plan in space.

Honorable mentions

Team Underground (TA)

We had too many channels to weed out for the TA category and that is why we had to pick two winners, however, Team Underground is a channel we cannot skip.

This underdog channel has been more right about the calls than any other mainstream channel. If you like your TAs and technical side of crypto – be sure to check this channel out.

BitBoy

People either love him or hate him.  There is no middle ground when it comes to BitBoy.  

Personally, we have to weed out a lot of noise while browsing through his channel since he picks a new project every few days (or weeks) and can become overwhelming. 

However, the fresh content is worth the watch.

EllioTraders

The guy behind this channel is truly vested in the space. So much so that he recently launched his own crypto project.

It’s definitely refreshing to see the YouTuber taking his expertise into a live project.  

The reason we did not list this channel on the BEST list is because of the constant feed of projects he pitches that is a bit overbearing for our taste.  

Nevertheless, a great channel and great recommendations.

Conclusion

There are 100s of YouTube channels out there but not everyone is worth your attention. We hope you found some channels of interest through this article.

Note: if we missed any gem of a channel, please let us know and we will be more than happy to add it after review.

Thank you for reading and sharing this article. We appreciate you.

Stay safe and healthy!

Top 5 Cryptocurrencies 2020

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER

Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.

We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.

All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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