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Tax of Cryptocurrency

If you earn, spend, or trade cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin, it is essential to understand that the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Revenu Québec consider digital currencies as commodities. Therefore, you are obligated to report any income or losses resulting from cryptocurrency transactions on your tax return, treating them similarly to other business or investment transactions. Even though your bank does not track these transactions, it is your responsibility to accurately report them to the tax authorities.


Reporting Tax of Cryptocurrency Transactions: What You Need to Know

When it comes to reporting your cryptocurrency transactions, there are important factors to consider. Whether you used digital currency to purchase goods or services or engaged in cryptocurrency trading (such as exchanging Bitcoin for Litecoin), it is crucial to report these transactions on your tax return. Here’s what you should keep in mind:

  1. Reporting in Canadian Dollars: Regardless of whether money was directly involved, you must report the value of your cryptocurrency transactions in Canadian dollars.
  2. Classifying Income or Loss: Depending on the nature of your transactions, you’ll need to determine whether to report the amount as business income or as a capital gain or loss.

To ensure accurate reporting, it is essential to maintain comprehensive records of your cryptocurrency activities. Keep track of the following:

  • Transaction Date: Note the date of each cryptocurrency transaction.
  • Receipts: Retain receipts for cryptocurrency purchases or exchanges.
  • Value Conversion: Record the value of the cryptocurrency in Canadian dollars at the time of the transaction.
  • Digital Wallet Records: Keep records of your digital wallet and cryptocurrency addresses.
  • Transaction Description: Include a description of the transaction and details of the person or organization you traded with, even if only their cryptocurrency address is available.
  • Exchange Records: Maintain records of cryptocurrency exchanges.
  • Accounting and Legal Fees: Keep track of any fees paid for accounting or legal services related to your cryptocurrency transactions.
  • Tax Software Expenses: Document the cost of any software used for managing your taxes.

It is crucial to retain these documents for at least six years. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Revenu Québec may request to review them if your tax return is selected for a detailed examination.

By staying organized and accurately reporting your cryptocurrency transactions, you can ensure compliance with tax regulations and be prepared in the event of an audit or review.

Tax of Cryptocurrency

Understanding Business Income and Capital Gains in Reporting Cryptocurrency Transactions

When reporting your cryptocurrency transactions, it’s essential to differentiate between business income and capital gains. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. Business Income:
  • If you consider your cryptocurrency activities as a business, report the amount you made or lost on your tax return using the Statement of Business or Professional Activities form (T2125 and TP-80).
  • Business income is fully taxable, and any losses can be deducted against other sources of income to reduce your tax liability.
  1. Capital Gains or Losses:
  • If you view your cryptocurrency as an investment, report your transactions as capital gains or losses on Schedule 3 (and Schedule G for Québec residents).
  • A capital gain occurs when you sell your cryptocurrency for more than what you initially paid, while a capital loss happens when you sell for less.
  • Capital gains are only 50% taxable, providing a potential tax advantage. Capital losses can be used to offset capital gains, reducing your overall taxable amount. Unused losses can be carried forward to future years.

Deciding How to Report: To determine how to report your cryptocurrency transactions, consider the pattern of your usage:

  • If you frequently trade cryptocurrencies over short periods, it may be considered business income.
  • If you hold cryptocurrencies as long-term investments, treating them similarly to stocks or other securities, it may be appropriate to report them as capital gains or losses.

Reporting Capital Gains or Losses: You should report capital gains or losses whenever you have a disposition (sale or transfer) of cryptocurrency. This includes:

  • Using cryptocurrency to purchase goods or services.
  • Converting cryptocurrency to fiat currency (traditional money).
  • Exchanging one type of cryptocurrency for another.
  • Making donations using cryptocurrency.

By accurately determining how to report your cryptocurrency transactions, you can ensure compliance with tax regulations and optimize your tax situation. It’s important to consult a tax professional or refer to the official guidelines provided by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Revenu Québec for specific advice related to your circumstances.


Reporting Cryptocurrency Transactions: Business Income and Other Considerations

When to Report Cryptocurrency Transactions as Business Income: If you engage in regular cryptocurrency trading, hold currencies for short periods, or conduct activities similar to day trading, you may need to report your transactions as business income. This applies to activities such as cryptocurrency mining, trading, and exchanges, including ATMs. Even a single transaction made with the intention of quick profit could be considered business income.

Uncertain about Whether It’s Business Income or Investment: If you’re unsure whether your transactions should be categorized as business income or investment, seeking assistance from an experienced tax professional at an H&R Block office or using the Do It Yourself Tax Software with the option to Ask a Tax Expert can help you make an informed decision.

Reporting Mined Cryptocurrency: If you mine cryptocurrency with the intention of selling it for profit, your mining activities are considered business income. It’s necessary to report the amount made or lost on your 2020 tax return. However, if you mine cryptocurrency as a hobby without the intention to sell it, you generally don’t need to report it. Keep in mind that regular mining activities for quick profit may be viewed as a business by the CRA and Revenu Québec, requiring reporting on your return.

Tax of Cryptocurrency
GST/HST on Cryptocurrency Transactions:

If your business is registered for a GST/HST number and typically charges GST/HST on the products or services provided, you’ll also need to charge it on cryptocurrency transactions. The GST/HST amount is based on the fair market value of the cryptocurrency at the time of the transaction, using the highest price in Canadian dollars.

It’s crucial to maintain proper records of your cryptocurrency transactions and consult official guidelines provided by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Revenu Québec to ensure compliance with reporting requirements.