The new “offshore” is in the cloud. The new asset protection tool is the blockchain. The best way to protect your IRA is by moving it onto the blockchain and behind and offshore structure. Get your retirement savings out of the United States, on to the cloud, and out of the reach of creditors before it’s too late.
As of today, you can freely move your IRA and other liquid assets out of the United States and behind the protective wall of an offshore structure. But, don’t expect this freedom to last long. As the tax reduction plans of President Trump come through, these loopholes will close.
The US will likely reduce US taxes and then eliminate the ability to retain earnings offshore. When that happens, all manner of regulations and new reporting requirements will be unleashed on offshore accounts. Only those who are already offshore will be spared.
You should be grandfathered in and not required to report the transfer. Also, you should not be required to pay any exit tax or transfer tax as we see with intellectual property transfers under IRC Section 482.
In most cases, the transfer of intellectual property to an offshore entity is a taxable event. The IP must be valued and tax paid on that fair market value as if you had sold it to the foreign entity. We expect this treatment to apply to all types of property in the near future.
To support this position, I note that the IRS has already ruled that cryptocurrency is property and not cash or a cash equivalent. This is why they can tax each and every sale as a capital gain. For more on this, see: Tax on Bitcoin Transactions.
In fact, the US government is all over cryptocurrency. The IRS is taxing transactions as capital gains. At the same time, the SEC claims Bitcoin is a currency and thus it has the right to regulate ICOs as it does IPOs.
You can expect the government to close the door to IRA transfers in the near future. If you want to get your retirement account on the blockchain and out of harm’s way, you’ll need to act quickly.
So, how do you get your IRA offshore? How can you move your IRA onto the blockchain? That’s easy enough.
The first step is to form an offshore IRA LLC in an offshore jurisdiction that 1) maximizes asset protection and privacy, 2) won’t tax your transactions, and 3) allows for single member LLCs. We need all three of these to build a proper retirement account structure.
As a result, the number of jurisdictions is limited. We usually work in Nevis, Belize, Cook Islands, and Seychelles. After 15 years in the industry, these countries are the most reliable.
Second, you likely need to transfer your IRA to a new US custodian. All IRAs require a US custodian, even those invested in cryptocurrency offshore. And the large custodians don’t want you investing offshore. They make money selling you their funds, so they prohibit international transfers.
Third, once your IRA is with a custodian that allows for international transfers, you instruct them to send a wire transfer to your offshore wallet or to your international bank account. If you will invest only in cryptocurrency, you might only need a wallet. If you want to diversify, you probably need an offshore bank account.
Fourth, once you have your structure, an agreeable custodian, and your offshore company is funded, we install you as the manager. You’re responsible for writing the checks or sending the transfers. You’re in control of the IRA and the account grows based on your investment choices.
And that’s all you need to get your IRA onto the blockchain and out of the reach of governments and civil creditors. A proper offshore structure, a US custodian, a quality international wallet or trading platform, and the documents required to install you as the manager of the account.
I should point out that buying Bitcoin in your retirement account will allow you to avoid US tax on these transactions. If you buy and sell crypto within a ROTH, the trades are tax free. If within a traditional account, they’re tax deferred – you pay US tax as you take distributions.
However, if you buy using leverage, you may still have a taxable event. Whenever you buy and sell in an IRA with a loan or on margin, the gain attributed to that leverage is taxable at ordinary rates.
You can eliminate this tax if you’re offshore, but not if you’re investing in the United States. Offshore traders can set up a UBIT Blocker in addition to their IRA LLC and eliminate UBI on their cryptocurrency trades. For more on this, see: What is UBIT in an IRA?
UBIT blockers a very advanced IRA tool only available offshore. Only sophisticated investors should deploy these structures.
I hope you’ve found this article on moving your IRA onto the blockchain to be helpful. For more on setting up an offshore IRA, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (619) 483-1708.