Intellectual property (“IP”) is typically monetized either by sale or (royalty generating) license agreements. The Code[1] often allows sales to be taxed at preferential capital gains rates[2] while simple royalties are ordinary income.[3] At present the maximum capital gain versus ordinary income rate differential for non-corporate taxpayers – without more[4]

In addition to being developed in-house, intellectual property (“IP”) can obviously be acquired from third parties. IP acquisitions may be more germane now than in the recent past as developers race to create and monetize artificial intelligence (“AI”) tools.  But, while AI platforms might be the shiniest and most interesting objects in the current IP

Intellectual property (“IP”) development can cost millions of dollars so cost recovery timing can be financially material. General tax principles typically require that expenses associated with creating assets having useful lives lasting longer than the current tax year are capitalized.  However, IP as an asset class has several statutory cost recovery possibilities (§§ 162, 167

Intellectual property (“IP”) is hugely important to businesses. Given that importance, IP owners must occasionally litigate against the unauthorized use of their technology. The costs of such litigation and appurtenant settlements implicate a host of federal income tax issues. Some IP litigants do not consider those tax issues at all, while others aggressively overplay their

Cryptocurrency holders often want to put their assets into an entity for a host of reasons, such as asset protection, arranging negotiated management rights and exit planning.  This post discusses basic federal income tax issues related to holding cryptocurrency inside a partnership (meaning any entity taxed under Subchapter K* of the Internal Revenue Code; the “Code’).

Cryptocurrencies might, simplistically, be defined as virtual currencies that use cryptography to secure transactions which are digitally recorded on a widely distributed ledger.  The ledger technology uses independent digital systems to timestamp and harmonize transactions. The cryptocurrencies associated with a ledger are often called “coins” or “tokens”.

Cryptocurrency can be acquired in multiple ways.  This post covers only common methods, such as purchase, gift, or airdrop following a hard fork.  A hard fork occurs when a ledger is subject to modifications that “break” compatibility with an earlier protocol; in other words, each leg of the fork follows different “rules” so the blockchain ledger is split into an original chain and new chain. Hard forks sometimes result in the creation of a new cryptocurrency.  An airdrop is a method of distributing cryptocurrency units to the ledger addresses of individual taxpayers. Airdrops sometimes, but not always, follow hard forks. While blockchain technology is interesting, and an elementary understanding of its technological mechanics is useful, it is the tax consequences of the receipt and disposition of cryptocurrency which is the subject of this post.