IRS Clarifies Tax Implications On 2017 Bitcoin Hard Fork

IRS Clarifies Tax Implications On 2017 Bitcoin Hard Fork


An IRS Memorandum launched on April 9, 2021 (Quantity: 202114020) additional clarifies when cryptocurrency arduous forks must be taxed.

The memorandum particularly talks about bitcoin (BTC) & bitcoin money (BCH) arduous fork occurred on August 1, 2017 at 9:16 AM EDT. Pursuant to the arduous fork, individuals who held BTC acquired an equal quantity of BCH. Though the fork occurred on August 1, 2017, not each BTC holder bought entry to BCH at the moment. For instance, individuals who used Coinbase needed to wait till January 1, 2018 to get entry to their BCH. Different centralized change customers additionally needed to wait a number of days or perhaps weeks earlier than with the ability to withdraw their newly acquired BCH. 

Arduous Fork Taxation 

The memorandum explains that you’ve a taxable occasion on the time you acquire dominion and management (the power to switch out funds) over the asset acquired after a tough fork versus the time at which the arduous fork truly occurred. 

Let’s use an instance as an instance this. Say Samantha had 1 BTC on Coinbase on August 1, 2017. After the arduous fork, she was eligible to obtain 1 BCH. As Fortune reported, 1 BCH was buying and selling at $200 on this present day. Nonetheless, Samantha was not capable of get entry to her BCH till January 1, 2018. That is when Coinbase allowed customers to withdraw BCH. On January 1, 2018, BCH was buying and selling at roughly $2,500 on Coinbase. 

On this state of affairs, Samantha positive factors dominion and management over BCH on January 1, 2018. She has to report $2,500 of unusual earnings on her 2018 tax return. That stated, if she held BTC in a self-custodied pockets with full entry to non-public keys, she would have had a taxable occasion on Aug 1, 2017 leading to solely $200 of taxable earnings. 

For those who went by the Bitcoin fork, it’s essential to see when your change supported the coin and while you acquired dominion and management to precisely determine your earnings for tax functions. 

Disclaimer: this put up is informational solely and isn’t meant as tax recommendation. For tax recommendation, please seek the advice of a tax skilled.


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