Help with a complicated Tax issue from 2017/2018

Discussion in 'Taxes and Accounting' started by baddaytrader, May 7, 2019.

im screwed for 10 years

  1. yes

  2. no

  3. leave the country

  1. Hello,

    In 2017 I had a sizable income. about 125k from W2 and another 480k from day trading. 50-60k was wash sales. I failed to elect myself as a trader in my 2017 return i did not know that I needed to make an election as I used TurboTax and it was not an option.In 2017 I had made 450 trades worth a total of $28 million over 6 months, only trading for half of the year. I traded in Jan/Feb. Took a large position that went the wrong way and held it until July then actively traded again from September -December. In 2018, I tried to take trading full time, quit my day job. I was up about 800k in the first few months, but had filled an extension on my 2017 return. By the time I actually filed my return, the market corrected while I was out of town and my account went bust, I lost $1.65 million over the course of a month while I was out of the country (I was split between 4 assets, sfix, tlry, roku, uvxy each happened to have extreme volatility and moved in the opposite direction of my holding by more than 65%, I was margin called and my account went down to $4,500). In 2018 I made 3900 trades worth a total of $84 million and traded just about everyday until my account went bust while I was out of the country. I am on the hook for 190k in 2017 tax still owed + 25k in interest and fees that is growing every month. in 2018 I also had about 105k in W2 income adn an additional 50k in 1099 revenue which after expenses was mostly a wash. I found a new day job but I only earn 135k a year. This is about as much as I am going to make per year for the foreseeable future given my current situation. After my regular monthly expenses I have at most 2500 in disposable income., leaving no room for saving. I have reached out to other CPA's and all anyone is telling me I can do is pay back the amount I owe from 2017 in full plus interest and expenses on a payment plan. The IRS told me in December the least they would accept as a payment was $3500. I have no assets at all other than my 401k of $90k a car worth 11k and another car that I have a loan against. I own no property, no boats, nothing else. everything I had was in my brokerage account. Based on my level of income, i will be paying this debt for at least 10 years. Is there anything you can think of given what I have stated and your experience that I should look into that might help my situation? I feel like given that I have already lost about 99.5% of my net worth, it is unreasonable for the iRS to expect em to make the full payment back, given I do not have the means for the same level of income. I asked multiple CPA's about an offer in compromise and was told that because my current salary is 135k, it was unlikely that the IRS would accept much, if anything, lower than the amount I currently owe. I tried asking other if it was possible to refile as a trader but apparently these elections that I was unaware were required needed to be made a year in advance. If the elections were made, then I would owe nothing because of the ability to carry a loss back to prior years. I always treated my trading as a business, i never withdrew a dime unless it was to pay the IRS from trading in previous years. 95% of all my holdings were bought and sold withing a week or two, 45% were within a day or two. I feel like I ran a business and it went bust and now I am personally liable for the rest of my life for this debt. If a hotdog stand made money one day and burned down the next, I dont think you would expect that hotdog sales man to make payments on what was earned because of his loss. I feel like I should be treated similar to having a failed business as that Is how I always treated it. Anyway, I have a cpa putting together my 2018 return but she is listing my 1.65 million loss as a regular investment loss because that election to be listed as a trader wasnt filed on time for 2018 taxes. I feel like Im getting myself in a deeper hole because i can not find anyone who seems to really understand the taxation rules and how to file things for someone in my situation. I literally went from being worth 2 million bucks 6 months ago to have 8k in my checking account and practically living paycheck to paycheck.

    any advice would be appreciated. I live in Austin, Texas. My current cpa is telling me that the min i can make on a payment plan is 2750 and thats without factoring the fees and interest. This leaves me 0 room for any saving or losing my job or health issues. Without some serious help im going to be in a position where I am setup to fail, paying somewhere around 65% of my pretax income to the irs. If i ever moved to a state with income tax i wouldn't be able to make these payments.
  2. speedo


    Tough story, yep without trading status you can only deduct $3000 yearly against earnings. I would engage a good tax attorney to negotiate a kinder settlement with the IRS.
  3. R1234


    Contact GreenTrader CPA, they are well versed in this type of thing. In the past I have used their affiliated attorney on a couple of occasions.
  4. tiddlywinks


    I call BS on the backstory. I also voted NO in your boo hoo poll.

    But I am sorry if you had losses in the market. Tough break on the taxes.

    Mustard, onion, and peppercini please.
  5. If you're willing to suffer for a little bit, quit your job. Let the IRS come after you. They may eventually decide it's uncollectable. The problem here is you can never earn a significant income because they'll come after you.

    Best is to find an attorney to negotiate a settlement.
  6. Why would you call BS? cause I earn 135k right now? I live in Austin and work in tech, if anything im a bit under paid based on my experience.
  7. I sent an email for info Robert Green replied back. Guy is kind of an asshole. Told me he wouldn't even read my email, which was basically word for word the same as the body of this post, without paying for the consultation. I literally have no extra money to keep throwing at people without having some assurance that they can actually do something for me other than waste my time and take the little money I have left.

    I also spoke to a bankrupcty lawyer who told me I wouldnt qualify for bankruptcy eve. So its like... I feel like im stuck working for literally nothing more than to pay the irs back, which is not much incentive at all.

  8. any recommendation? I have been looking for help on this since the account was margin called back in October and haven't found a single person who has done more than mislead me in an effort to bill me for their time. It sounds ridiculous and it is ridiculous
  9. smallfil


    Try an installment plan with the IRS. It will take longer to pay it off but, I do not see you having any other option. Also, I doubt you would have qualified for trader status. As I understood it, you have to be trading on a regular basis and you stopped trading for months. What did you in is your total lack of risk management in your trading. And since, you had large open positions, you should have hedged it at a minimum with options to have peace of mind. People feel invincible when they make huge monies in the stockmarket. It happened to me too and I lost substantial amounts to in the process. Life goes on and it can only get better!
    Last edited: May 7, 2019
    jys78 likes this.

  10. I agree I fucked up. I should have hedged. I should have had stop losses in place. I should have been paying more attention to the market. I got arrogant. However all of that is in the past, lessons were learned, and im in this situation for better or worse. Having to give up a minimum of ~70 % of my pre tax pay to the IRS for the next 7+ years , assuming no missed payments, is just too much. The minimum payment plan is at 3600 a month. Thats after my regular taxes are taken from my check. I just find the whole situation hard to swallow. I didnt skip taxes for years not paying on earned income. I lost 99% of money due the the wild volatility in the stock market, arguably caused by our own government. Im sure others have had something similar happen thats why i posted here because every 'professional' cpa ive spoken too seems to think my only option is to give up that 70% indefinitely.
    #10     May 7, 2019