Cryptocurrencies are mainstream.
You can use bitcoin to buy far more than you would think. To see, try googling “What can I buy with bitcoin?” You will get more than 350,000 hits.
But using cryptocurrencies has federal income tax implications that may surprise you. With the price of bitcoin having gone through the roof (before its recent decline), and with increasing acceptance of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as forms of payment, the tax implications of using cryptocurrencies are a hot-button issue for the IRS.
The 2020 version of IRS Form 1040 asks whether you received, sold, sent, exchanged, or otherwise acquired—at any time during the year—any financial interest in any virtual currency. If you did, you are supposed to check the “Yes” box.
The fact that this question appears on page 1 of Form 1040, right below the lines for supplying taxpayer information such as your name and address, indicates that the...
Did you take a coronavirus distribution (CVD) of up to a combined limit of $100,000 from one or more of your traditional IRAs in 2020?
You can recontribute the CVD amount(s) back into one or more traditional IRAs within three years of the withdrawal date(s). You treat each withdrawal and later recontribution within the three-year window as a federal-income-tax-free IRA rollover transaction. That’s the tax advantage.
The non-tax advantage is that there are no restrictions on how you can use CVD funds. You can use the money to pay bills and recontribute later—within the three-year window—when your financial situation permits. You can help out your adult kids now and recontribute later. Whatever.
Key point. The favorable tax treatment applies equally to CVDs taken from garden-variety traditional IRAs, SEP-IRAs, SIMPLE-IRAs, and employer retirement plans that allowed CVDs.
Unfortunately, you must put up with some potentially awkward interim tax consequences...