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News/Can FTX Rise From the Ashes? $24B Tax Battle Heats Up, Debtors Fight Back

Can FTX Rise From the Ashes? $24B Tax Battle Heats Up, Debtors Fight Back

Van Thanh Le

Dec 12 2023

5 months ago3 minutes read
Chibi robot championing debtors' fight against the IRS amidst a hopeful confetti shower

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IRS vs. FTX: $24 Billion Tax Debt Dispute

From boom to bust, the saga of FTX takes a dramatic turn as a colossal $24 billion tax bill from the IRS throws the bankrupt exchange into a legal brawl. Buried in the labyrinth of bankruptcy proceedings, this contentious dispute not only sheds light on the murky tax landscape of crypto but also fuels the anxieties of countless users hoping to salvage their lost funds.

Once a titan of the crypto world, FTX now finds itself embroiled in financial distress and legal firestorms. The initial shockwave came in the form of a staggering $44 billion tax claim, later revised down to $24 billion, primarily attributed to partnership taxes. Unfazed, FTX has mounted a fierce defense, demanding the IRS back their claims with concrete evidence.

Robotic arm juggling FTX logos escapes a menacing IRS stamp in a race against time.webp

But the IRS isn't budging. Dismissing FTX's accounting, they remain firm in their assessment. This standoff culminates in a courtroom clash, where FTX seeks not absolution, but a tax bill that reflects their financial reality.

This battle goes beyond numbers. It's a clash of titans – a struggling crypto giant against the might of the taxman – with countless users caught in the crossfire. The outcome will not only determine FTX's fate but also set a precedent for the taxation of crypto entities in the years to come.

FTX Reports $24 Billion IRS Tax Demand Delaying User Fund Recovery

The $24 billion tax bomb ticking beneath FTX's bankruptcy case just got its timer set: December 13th. This crucial hearing will determine the fate of the exchange, its users' money, and the murky tax landscape of crypto.

At the heart of the conflict lies a disputed bill for the years 2018-2022, a period that saw FTX soar to the top and crash back down like a comet. FTX denies any liability, calling the IRS's demands "preposterous" and blaming them for the delay in user reimbursements.

Ghostly figure unveils $11B loss amidst a swirling vortex of tax and FTX imagery.webp

But the IRS isn't backing down. They've bombarded FTX with over 2,300 information requests and continue audits, suggesting the final tax figure is still up for grabs. The burden of proof falls on FTX to disprove the IRS's initial estimations, presumed correct by law.

This isn't just about a hefty bill. It's about setting a precedent for crypto taxation. A win for FTX could mean fairer tax treatment for the entire industry, while a loss could leave users stranded in a financial wasteland.

With the clock ticking, December 13th promises a high-stakes showdown. Will FTX defuse the tax bomb and pave the way for its future, or will the IRS blow it into oblivion?

FTX Debtors Challenge $24 Billion IRS Claim

The $24 billion tax bomb dropped by the IRS on FTX's bankruptcy case just got its first counterpunch: the debtors. They're calling the claim "unfounded" and warning it could torpedo any hope of repaying victims. Their argument? The IRS's sky-high figures are "miles off" from FTX's actual earnings and losses.

While cooperating with the IRS, FTX's lawyers face a bureaucratic labyrinth to disprove the claims, potentially stalling the entire bankruptcy process. Their own reports, backed by accounting giant EY, paint a starkly different picture – an $11 billion loss mirrored in their tax returns. The IRS, however, isn't budging, proposing an eight-month investigation that could drag on for months.

Phoenix chicks rise from FTX ashes, symbolizing potential user recovery despite the looming IRS threat.webp

This is no ordinary audit. It's a fight for FTX's future, and the billions owed to victims. A glimmer of hope emerged from the November upheaval, with $7 billion in assets found amidst the wreckage, despite fraud accusations against ex-CEO Sam Bankman-Fried. But the path ahead is treacherous, paved with courtroom battles and countless hours of audits and negotiations.

Key Takeaway

The tax claim strife pits the IRS against FTX, where the latter disputes the substantial $24 billion claim as unfounded and a significant hindrance to bankruptcy resolutions. This protracted contest lays bare the complexities endemic to bankruptcy cases within the crypto sphere and may very well forge a precedent for dealing with similar tax-related disputes in the future. 


1. What is the current tax dispute between FTX and the IRS about?

The dispute centers on a $24 billion tax debt claim by the IRS, which FTX contests as being erroneous and without merit. This contention poses significant delays in FTX's bankruptcy process and the return of user funds.

2. Why does the IRS believe FTX owes $24 billion in taxes?

The IRS initially claimed FTX owed $44 billion, later adjusting to $24 billion, largely attributed to partnership taxes. The IRS alleges that from 2018 to 2022, FTX garnered enough taxable income and transactions to justify this claim.

3. How is FTX responding to the IRS’s tax claims?

FTX has denounced the claims as unjustifiably high and has requested the IRS to substantiate its demands with solid evidence. Despite complying with IRS requests and audits, FTX insists these tax estimates far exceed their actual income.

4. What impact does the IRS claim have on FTX's bankruptcy proceedings and user fund distribution?

The IRS claim adds complexity to the already intricate bankruptcy proceedings, potentially postponing the reimbursement of FTX users. It may lead to less favorable outcomes for FTX creditors if the IRS claim is prioritized.

5. When is the next major hearing regarding the FTX tax dispute case scheduled?

The next major hearing pertaining to FTX's tax dispute case is scheduled for December 13. This hearing could be decisive in FTX's efforts to challenge the IRS's tax demands and move forward with restructuring plans.

This article has been refined and enhanced by ChatGPT.

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