Thursday, November 13, 2008

Good News in the TARP?

Who knew?

If you received and exercised stock options, and had to pay taxes on the phantom income, I have got some good news for you:

Buried in the $700b TARP Bailout is this AMT tax amendment:
“Their tax nightmare was created by a provision of the Internal Revenue Code called the Alternative Minimum Tax, or AMT. These tech workers had been granted what’s called an incentive stock option. Under the AMT, these are taxed at the time employees exercise the right to buy them, based on the difference between the grant price and the exercise price. During the dot-com era, when stock prices soared to dizzying heights, employees could have a stock option that was granted at less than a dollar but that he or she exercised at more than $100 a share.”
Here's the full text [PDF] of the law - see pages 99 and 100. Here is a brief summary from ReformAMT which championed the legislation.
(As always, anything published here should not be construed as tax or investment advice. That said, perhaps a chat with your accountant would be in order).


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