Monetary Policy

The IRS’s Treatment of Bitcoin Payments

unspecifiedIf you’ve paid attention to the news the last few years, then you have probably heard of Bitcoins. In fact, you may even have considered accepting them as payment for services or product sales. Before you do, you’ll want to make sure you have an understanding of how the IRS treats Bitcoin payments.

First, it’s important to be aware of the fact that the IRS does not consider Bitcoins, which are virtual currency, as a legitimate state-backed currency. Instead, they see Bitcoins as property.

How does this affect you as a taxpayer? This means that the tax rules that apply to property transactions will also apply to payments received in Bitcoins. When a person or business acquires property, they are required to record the fair market value of the property. This will become the owner’s basis for the property.

Once the property is sold or exchanged, if the fair market value of the property has increased, then the owner will have a taxable gain. On the other hand, if it has decreased in value, the owner will have a loss.

This means that if a business owner sells a product today and receives Bitcoins worth $100, but then converts them to dollars next week and the value has increased to $120, they will have a gain of $20 that will be taxed as capital gains.

This becomes even more complicated when multiple Bitcoin transactions take place. Each transaction needs to be tracked separately, and each will have its own gain or loss depending on the current valuation of Bitcoins when they are converted to dollars. The amount of paperwork and record-keeping becomes significant.

There are a couple of workarounds for this. First, each transaction can be converted to dollars immediately. Secondly, there are now Bitcoin merchant service providers that will deal with all of the back-end record-keeping that is necessary. This allows businesses to accept Bitcoins without ever actually dealing with them.

The IRS ruling to treat Bitcoins as property turned the Bitcoin world and those who want to accept them on their heads, but technology and even the IRS will eventually catch up to the new reality of virtual currencies. It just may take awhile.

For more information on tax implications associated with Bitcoins, please contact us today!

Disability Insurance Basics for Dental Practices

Disability Insurance Basics

Most people plan to work in their dental practice until they are old enough to retire. Unfortunately, unexpected accidents, injuries and illnesses can quickly derail this plan and render an individual unable to work and earn a living on his or her own. For this reason, many people invest in disability insurance to protect against financial problems.


A disability insurance policy replaces a portion of the covered person’s income when he or she becomes unable to work because of a covered event, such as an accident or severe illness. Disability insurance may offer short-term and/or long-term coverage. While short-term coverage typically provides benefits for six months or less, long-term coverage provides benefits to workers with disabilities expected to last more than 6 months. Some dental employers provide disability insurance for their employees as a benefit of employment, but workers can also purchase a policy on their own.


Not all disability insurance policies are the same, so careful shopping and consideration is highly recommended. Most disability insurance policies replace at least 60 percent of the covered worker’s gross earnings. However, additional coverage is sometimes available for a higher premium. While some policies can be canceled based on certain factors, such as the worker’s health, others cannot. Not all policies define “disability” in the same way, so subscribers should read all policy information thoroughly before making a final purchase decision.

Disability Insurance versus SSDI

Disability insurance is not the same as Social Security Disability. While disability insurance policies are purchased from private insurance companies, SSDI comes from the federal government and is based on the covered individual’s work and earnings history. Most dental workers have the option of applying for SSDI after becoming disabled, regardless of whether they are receiving benefits from a private disability insurance policy. However, the approval process is lengthy and often difficult.