The most recent tax guidance from the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) states that income generated through crypto staking will be treated as taxable earnings.
According to the Revenue Ruling of 2023-14 that the IRS released on Monday, cryptocurrency investors are required to declare incentives they obtain for staking digital assets as gross income in the same year they receive them.
As per the agreement, gross revenue includes earnings that are received in any way, including cash, property, services, and current bet rewards.
According to the IRS’s legal analysis, the order is applicable to cash-method taxpayers who stake native cryptocurrencies on proof-of-stake blockchains and get extra cryptocurrencies as incentives when validation takes place.
“The taxpayer’s gross income in the taxable year in which the taxpayer acquires dominion and control over the validation rewards” includes the fair market value of the validation rewards they have received.
The IRS further stated that a taxpayer who mines cryptocurrency or receives cryptocurrency as payment for goods or services must include the fair market value of the cryptocurrency in their gross income in the same year that they gain control of the cryptocurrency.
The law did not, however, make clear how those who stake on various networks should file their taxes, which made issues more difficult for these cryptocurrency investors.
Enhanced Inspection of Crypto Staking Services
The IRS, the US federal tax authority, has recently been regularly examining the crypto asset class.
It has plans to send experts to Sydney, Bogota, Frankfurt, and Singapore in May to fight cybercrime, with a focus on tax and financial offences involving bitcoin.
According to an annual report for the 2022 fiscal year, the Criminal Investigation Division of the IRS seized “record amounts of data and cryptocurrency.” The IRS also participated in the “largest single financial seizure in government history,” where the Department of Justice detained the suspects for allegedly laundering cryptocurrency that had been stolen in a 2016 hack of the cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex.
The IRS’s decision was made at a time when the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was focusing on certain staking services offered by American cryptocurrency exchanges.
Shortly after the IRS accused the cryptocurrency exchange Kraken of breaking securities laws with regard to its staking service, the two parties reached a settlement.
The IRS will analyse the account and transaction information provided to Kraken by the US District Court for the Northern District of California’s order to determine if any cryptocurrency users have underreported taxes.
According to the court ruling, Kraken must reveal details about users who made transactions totaling more than $20,000 in a single calendar year.