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News/Proposed Cryptocurrency Tax Rules: A Necessity, Or A Misstep?

Proposed Cryptocurrency Tax Rules: A Necessity, Or A Misstep?

Aug 25 2023

10 months ago2 minutes read
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Breaking Ground: Treasury & IRS Revamping Crypto Tax Rules

Written by Van

The U.S. Treasury Department's recent proposal of new tax rules for cryptocurrencies, including impacts on the Ethereum market cap, aims to reshape the crypto tax landscape as reported by the Wall Street Journal. The proposed regulations, intended to streamline the process, bear implications for crypto businesses, that would match traditional brokers in their interactions with the IRS.

The new tax rules, once fully enforced from 2026, will bind crypto businesses to IRS interaction akin to traditional brokers who oversee stock and mutual fund portfolios. These businesses will then be tasked with submitting annual reports on Form 1099s to the IRS and taxpayers, stating the total proceeds from transactions.

Stepping Beyond Crypto: NFTs and DeFi Drawn Into Tax Net

The scope of the impending regulations includes digital assets like nonfungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized finance (DeFi) platforms. Drawing DeFi platforms under tax scrutiny, affecting crypto coin prices, has sparked critique within the crypto sphere. The DeFi Education Fund's head termed the proposal “confusing, self-refuting, and misguided.”

The IRS's repeated battles with the exclusive challenges cryptocurrencies bring to the taxation table have been long-documented. Especially debatable has been the taxation of cryptocurrency staking rewards, inciting legal disputes and demands for clearer guidelines. The present proposals represent yet another stride towards regulatory transparency, despite eliciting mixed reviews from industry insiders.

Mixed Bag of Responses: Opposition Meets Recognition

Key crypto industry figures are seated at a roundtable, deeply engaged in a discussion about the proposed tax rules (1).webp

Key industrial figures have forwarded criticism, primarily considering decentralized operations' potential impact on crypto price. They caution against the proposal's expansive spectrum, which they perceive could unjustly ensnare entities like self-hosted wallets and decentralized exchanges with difficult compliance channels. 

However, others like Blockchain Association CEO Kristin Smith acknowledge the proposal's potential advantages, arguing it could assist average crypto users in accurately abiding by tax laws, provided proper implementation.

Miller Whitehouse-Levine, DeFi Education Fund CEO, voiced his skepticism strongly, labeling the IRS’s proposal as “confusing, self-refuting, and misguided.” He criticized the attempt to impose regulatory frameworks based on traditional intermediary interactions within the crypto space where none exist.

While feedback on the proposed rules is open until October 30, public hearing sessions have been arranged for November 7-8, 2023.

Highlighting a positive dimension, the proposal does not generally encompass crypto mining operations. This exclusion spells relief for many as anxiety was mounting following the 2021 law decreeing the tax rules.


1. What are the newly proposed tax rules for cryptocurrencies?

The U.S. Treasury Department has proposed new tax rules that will require crypto businesses to interact with the IRS similar to traditional brokers who handle stocks and mutual funds. From 2026, these platforms must submit annual reports on Form 1099s to the IRS and taxpayers.

2. Which digital assets fall under the scope of these proposed tax rules?

Besides cryptocurrencies, reflected in cryptocurrency charts, the proposed tax rules also apply to other digital assets, including nonfungible tokens (NFTs) and decentralized finance (DeFi) platforms.

3. What is the reaction of the crypto industry to these proposed rules?

The proposed tax regulations have evoked mixed responses, with some key industry figures criticizing their wide scope that could potentially grasp entities without clear compliance pathways. Others acknowledge the possible benefits, considering the proper implementation.

4. What changes could these proposed regulations bring for everyday crypto users?

If implemented correctly, the proposed rules could assist regular crypto users in accurately complying with tax laws by providing required information.

5. Are crypto mining operations included in the proposed tax rules?

The proposed tax regulations generally exclude crypto mining operations, which has been a significant concern with the mandated tax rules introduced in the 2021 infrastructure law.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the proposed tax rules by the U.S. Treasury Department generate a crossroads for the crypto industry. As the Department and IRS strive for transparency and eased tax compliance, industry forerunners apprehend an unparalleled scope that might unfairly encase certain entities. 

Balancing necessary regulation and the unique reality of the cryptocurrency landscape is the key challenge. The final outcome hinges on thoughtful implementation and industry adaptability. Finally, the exemption of crypto mining operations offers consolation for many who feared their inclusion in this sea change.

This article has been refined and enhanced by ChatGPT.

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