In 2017, I gave my certified public accountant (CPA)—who came highly recommended—my crypto tax file. He just about had a stroke when he saw how complex it was.
At $200 per hour, he billed me enough to pay for a nice addition to his house. And even then, he still gave me bad advice.
I’d asked him about the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (FBAR). I wanted to know if I needed to file an FBAR with the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).
The FBAR is a compulsory disclosure of a foreign account. According to the FinCEN site:
A United States person that has a financial interest in or signature authority over foreign financial accounts must file an FBAR if the aggregate value of the foreign financial accounts exceeds $10,000 at any time during the calendar year.
My CPA assured me I didn’t have to file one.
But I was in for a big surprise. I learned that if I held more than $10,000 in a foreign crypto account, I would have to file an FBAR with FinCEN.
And it was only through a new crypto tax service that I discovered I did have to file one.
This CPA was no slouch, either… But he clearly gave me bad advice. So I contacted a new one, and we rectified the situation by filing an FBAR.
Now, over the past two years, I’ve received hundreds of emails from subscribers asking about cryptocurrencies and taxes. And I share their frustrations.
Since 2016, I’ve wanted to offer my readers a definitive tax solution… I just needed to find the right one. With bitcoin up 174% this year, it’s important to make sure you report your gains accurately.
And I’ve found the solution. I’ll share the details in a moment.
But first, I want to tell you why you need to take the tax implications of your crypto investments seriously…
The IRS Is Cracking Down
The IRS is useless when it comes to providing direction. (You can read its “guidance” on the tax treatment of virtual currencies right here.) To make matters worse, the agency is getting serious about enforcing taxation on crypto gains.
For instance, the IRS paid blockchain intelligence firm Chainalysis nearly $2 million to look for tax cheats. And last year, crypto exchange Coinbase said it would turn over 13,000 client account records to the agency.
The writing is on the wall. Very soon, the IRS will be able to peer into every single crypto transaction on any U.S.-based exchange.
Another reason I wanted to find a crypto tax solution is that—as I found out myself—even trusted CPAs flounder with the most basic crypto-related tax questions.
That’s why I wanted to find a program that collects and organizes all of your crypto trade data into a usable format. Your CPA can use it to figure out your tax liability.
Now, I don’t provide tax, legal, or accounting advice. Keep in mind: This is general tax information. You should consult your own tax, legal, and accounting advisors regarding your specific financial situation.
But if staying compliant to the best of your ability is important to you (it certainly is to me), I suggest you consider this new tax solution…
A Leading Solution
It bears repeating: I can’t provide you with tax advice. I’m not qualified to do so. That’s why I’ve been scouring the world for a tax solution I could recommend to you.
And last year, I discovered a young man working on a solution to this important problem.
His name is Pat Larsen.
Pat has a chemistry degree from the U.S. Air Force Academy and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. (That’s the same Chicago Booth that spawned more Nobel laureates in economics than any other school, save Cambridge University in the UK.)
As a mission commander for the U.S. Navy, he oversaw four search-and-rescue choppers. He was deployed to Iraq twice, and his mission was simple: to rescue wounded civilian and military personnel.
When I discovered he was working on a tax software for cryptocurrencies called ZenLedger, I was intrigued.
He told me about his project, and I immediately knew it was a service my subscribers needed to hear about. At the time, Pat asked me not to write about it. He said it wasn’t ready for primetime yet—but that it would be by October 2018.
And Pat’s a man who can hit a deadline. To his credit, his project has been up and running… and it’s awesome.
A Tax Solution for Crypto Investors
ZenLedger is a tax software for cryptocurrency investors. It makes it easy to import cryptocurrency transactions, calculate gains and income, and autofill tax forms like the FBAR.
Further, ZenLedger prepares a number of useful documents such as capital gains and income reports. It’ll keep adding more in the future, too.
It covers all the major crypto and fiat currencies. And it works with major crypto exchanges such as Binance, Bittrex, and Poloniex.
ZenLedger also plans to release a tool that shows which coins are in the black and which are in the red, by exchange. This will allow you to sell losers and harvest tax-loss assets.
This is the only accounting program I’ve found that covers all major coins, all major exchanges, and most major wallets—and provides actual, live customer support.
It’s given me a credible and defendable position to take if the IRS asks how I accounted for my crypto taxes. (Keep in mind, neither PBRG nor its affiliates receive any compensation for recommending this service.)
To learn more about ZenLedger, click here. Come tax season, you’ll be thankful you used it, too.
Let the Game Come to You!
Editor, Palm Beach Daily
P.S. I’ll be sharing more insights like this in my first live crypto training session of 2019. It’s called 5 Coins to $5 Million, and it airs TONIGHT at 8 p.m. ET.
You won’t want to miss out as I share five cryptos poised to make you a crypto millionaire—including my current No. 1 crypto pick. It’s all thanks to a phenomenon that we won’t see again until 2024. And I’m revealing all the details tonight.