Five U.S. bureaucrats that included Kevin Brady, Lynn Jenkins, David Schweikert, Darin LaHood and Brad Wenstrup, followed up to the letter which had been initially sent on 17th of May 2017, to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The letter was addressed to the Honorable David Kautter, who is the acting IRS Commissioner.
The bureaucrats raised questions regarding the lack of a ‘comprehensive virtual currency strategy’ and strongly urged the IRS to provide a clear framework for the taxpayers to comply with their tax obligations when transacting with virtual currencies. At the moment, taxpayers are required to file every single transaction that they conduct with a cryptocurrency which is then taxed. Cryptocurrencies are currently considered as a commodity or a property in the view of the IRS, therefore, cryptocurrencies are subjected to capital gain laws.
The open letter addressed a concern that taxpayers are not adequately being informed of their tax obligations to the IRS when it comes to cryptocurrencies and states, “While the Committee appreciates the IRS’s need to undertake enforcement actions to ensure that taxpayers generally meet their tax obligations, in this case, we are concerned that the IRS is seeking to enforce guidelines that do not adequately advise taxpayers of their tax obligations when using virtual currencies. Furthermore, while the issues surrounding virtual currencies are complicated and ever-evolving, a key component of the IRS’s duties as the nation’s tax administrator is to assist taxpayers in understanding what their tax obligations are and how they may best meet them. A failure to put forth adequate guidance severely hinders taxpayers’ ability to do so. The IRS has had four years to work through these issues since its preliminary guidance was issued, providing more than adequate time for the IRS to thoughtfully consider what additional information is needed”.
The open letter puts it in clear writing that the bureaucrats require the IRS to expedite the issue of providing robust guidelines and provide a reply to the information requested from them no later than the 17th of October 2018.