IRS to host tax summit for crypto firms

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is holding a tax summit on cryptocurrency, designed to discuss its approach to “[balancing] taxpayer service with regulatory enforcement,” according to reports.

The U.S. tax authority has invited companies within the crypto sector, as well as other industry stakeholders, to attend the summit on March 3. Email invites were sent out by the authority today, and first reported by Bloomberg Tax.

The summit will take place over four separate 90-minute panel discussions, covering technology updates, issues for cryptocurrency exchanges, tax return preparation, and regulatory guidance and compliance for crypto businesses.

According to the email invitation, panelists from government and across the private sector “will share their views and engage with the audience, which will include IRS personnel from across the spectrum of tax administration, and individuals from other bureaus or offices within the Department of Treasury.”

The invitation, which has been confirmed as valid by representatives of the IRS, encourages recipients to attend the event, to share their views, and to help shape the direction of IRS oversight within the sector.

The tax summit is only the latest initiative from the IRS as it moves towards greater enforcement action in the cryptocurrency sector. In particular, the IRS has flagged tax evasion through crypto as one of the issues it is looking to tackle.

The authority is also in the process of developing its guidance for tax reporting and compliance within the sector, with the event set to help shape how firms will be required to report crypto dealings in future.

Taxation of cryptocurrencies and digital assets is an emerging area for regulators worldwide, with several different approaches currently in force across different jurisdictions.

Some tax cryptocurrencies as an asset, with earnings subject to capital gains tax—whereas in other jurisdictions, cryptocurrencies are treated as a unique asset class, or gains reported as trading income.

The IRS summit gives companies and individuals already operating within the cryptocurrency space to give their views on how the industry should be most effectively taxed, as well as a say in how the IRS’ ultimate guidance might work in practice. 

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