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Updated US Infrastructure Bill Narrows Crypto Reporting Rule

An updated version of the U.S. Senate’s bipartisan infrastructure bill narrows the definition of “broker” for the purposes of crypto tax collection but stops short of specifying that only companies that provide services for customers qualify.

The bill, which is being debated by the Senate, funds around $1 trillion in infrastructure improvements across the country, and would be paid for in part by about $28 billion in taxes generated from crypto transactions. An earlier version of the bill sought to do this by boosting information reporting requirements and broadening the definition of a “broker” for tax purposes to include any parties that might interact with crypto, including decentralized exchanges or other non-custodial service providers.

An updated version of the bill now specifies that only people who provide digital asset transfers would be treated as a broker, according to a copy of the draft bill obtained by CoinDesk and later posted online. In other words, the language now does not explicitly include decentralized exchanges, but it also doesn’t explicitly exclude miners, node operators, software developers or similar parties.

“Any person who (for consideration) is responsible for regularly providing any service effectuating transfers of digital assets on behalf of another person” is now included in the definition, according to the bill.

Where an earlier draft also said the bill provided for an “expansion” of the definition of the term “broker,” the current version provides for a “clarification” of the term.

At the heart of the issue is information reporting requirements. The initial version of the infrastructure bill did not propose new taxes on crypto transactions, but rather, proposed increasing the type of reporting that exchanges or other market participants must provide around transactions.

This means the bill would enforce existing tax rules on a broader set of transactions. It could be difficult for some types o...

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