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  • QSBS Original Issuance Explainer

    Posted by Christian on November 25, 2023 at 9:39 pm

    The “Original Issuance” criterion for Qualified Small Business Stock (QSBS) is a key factor in determining eligibility for the tax benefits associated with these stocks. It means that the stock must be acquired directly from the corporation when it is first issued. Let’s go through some examples to illustrate this concept:

    Example 1: Acquisition in Exchange for Money

    • Scenario: Sarah invests $50,000 in a startup technology company. In return, she receives newly issued shares from the company.

    • QSBS Eligibility: Since Sarah acquired the shares in exchange for cash at the time they were originally issued by the corporation, this transaction meets the original issuance requirement for QSBS.

    Example 2: Acquisition in Exchange for Property

    • Scenario: David, a software developer, provides a patented technology to a new biotech company. Instead of paying him in cash, the company issues new shares to David as compensation for his patent.

    • QSBS Eligibility: Here, David acquires the stock in exchange for property (his patent), and the stock is newly issued. This transaction also meets the original issuance requirement for QSBS.

    Example 3: Acquisition as Compensation for Services

    • Scenario: Emily joins a small financial tech startup as a chief financial officer. As part of her compensation package, she is granted newly issued stock options in the company.

    • QSBS Eligibility: When Emily exercises these options and acquires the stock, it’s considered issued in exchange for her services to the corporation. This transaction qualifies under the original issuance requirement for QSBS.

    Example 4: Acquisition Through an Underwriter

    • Scenario: A small company goes public, offering its shares to the public for the first time through an IPO (Initial Public Offering), and Jack buys shares through this offering.

    • QSBS Eligibility: Since Jack is acquiring the stock as it is being originally issued to the public (even though it’s through an underwriter), this purchase can qualify as original issuance for QSBS purposes.

    Non-Qualifying Example: Secondary Market Purchase

    • Scenario: Linda buys shares of a small tech company through a stock exchange, where the shares are being resold by another investor.

    • QSBS Eligibility: This does not meet the original issuance requirement. The shares were not acquired directly from the company but from another investor in a secondary market.

    Key Points

    • Direct from Company: The stock must be acquired directly from the company issuing it, not through secondary markets.

    • First-Time Issuance: It should be the first time the stock is issued. Shares bought from existing shareholders don’t qualify.

    • Various Forms of Exchange: Cash, property, or services can be exchanged for the stock, as long as the transaction involves the issuance of new shares.

    Understanding the original issuance requirement is crucial for investors seeking the tax advantages associated with QSBS. It ensures that the benefits are directed towards new investments in small businesses, rather than secondary market transactions.

    Christian replied 7 months ago 1 Member · 0 Replies
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