Hey everyone! I’m Bette Hochberger, CPA, CGMA. As cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and others steadily integrate into mainstream financial transactions, their use in philanthropy and personal gifts is increasingly common. 

As a CPA specializing in crypto, I am going to discuss the tax implications and benefits associated with gifting or donating cryptocurrencies. Understanding these aspects is essential for both the donor and the recipient in today’s digital currency landscape.

Cryptocurrency Classified as Property

Firstly, it’s important to recognize that the IRS views cryptocurrencies as property, not as currency. This classification is crucial for tax purposes. Similar to other forms of property, such as stocks or real estate, the transfer of cryptocurrency through gifts or donations is subject to specific tax rules. 

This understanding lays the foundation for how such transactions should be approached from a tax perspective.

Tax Implications of Gifting Cryptocurrency

When it comes to gifting cryptocurrency, there are several tax considerations to keep in mind. If you gift crypto, you do not incur capital gains tax at the time of the transfer. This makes gifting an efficient method for sharing wealth without immediate tax implications. 

However, it’s important to note that the recipient of the crypto gift inherits the cost basis, which is the value of the cryptocurrency when it was originally acquired by the giver. For gifts that exceed certain monetary thresholds, additional reporting requirements, such as filing a gift tax return, may be necessary.

Donating Cryptocurrency and Tax Benefits

Donating cryptocurrency to a qualified charitable organization can offer significant tax benefits. Unlike gifting to an individual, when you donate to a charity, you can potentially eliminate capital gains tax on the appreciated amount of the crypto if held for more than a year. 

This aspect makes donating cryptocurrency an attractive option for philanthropically inclined individuals with crypto assets that have appreciated in value. The donor may also be eligible for a tax deduction based on the fair market value of the crypto at the time of the donation, subject to certain limitations and conditions.

So, whether you are considering gifting or donating cryptocurrency, it’s crucial to understand the tax rules and potential benefits involved. As cryptocurrencies continue to gain traction, their integration into traditional financial and philanthropic avenues demands a nuanced understanding of their tax implications. 

By staying informed and consulting with a tax professional specializing in crypto, you can navigate these transactions effectively, maximizing benefits while ensuring compliance.

If you want to learn more about gifting crypto, feel free to set up a meeting with me, and I’d be happy to help.

As always, stay safe, and I will see you next time!