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November 25, 2019

Proposed Rules Clarifying Carried Interest Limitation Expected Early 2020, Kautter Says


Treasury and the IRS are expected to release proposed rules in "early 2020" that would clarify certain limitations on the carried interest tax break, according to David Kautter, Treasury’s assistant secretary for tax policy. Kautter briefly addressed the proposed regulations’ timeline while speaking at the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) 2019 National Tax Conference in Washington, D.C.

Carried Interest Limitation

Specifically, the forthcoming regulations are expected to restrict S corporations from taking advantage of a carried interest exemption provision under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA). Notably, Republicans’ TCJA enacted at the end of 2017 requires certain money managers to hold investments for at least three years before becoming eligible for the lower, 20% capital gains rate.

However, the new tax law exempted corporations from this holding period, which Treasury and many lawmakers on Capitol Hill say resulted in an unintended "loophole." The forthcoming regulations are expected to clarify the law’s intent that S corporations are subject to the three-year holding period for carried interest, according to Treasury’s last press release on the matter issued in March 2018.

Legal Questions May Arise

Most notably, however, the TCJA does not expressly contain this limitation on S-corporations, which has left some on Capitol Hill questioning Treasury and the IRS’s authority to implement such a restriction via regulations. The IRS on November 15 directed Wolters Kluwer to Treasury for confirmation on this anticipated rule and projected timeline. As of press time, Treasury had not responded to Wolters Kluwer’s request for comment.

2019 Individual Tax Planning Supplement

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