Can I Give Away My Shares in an S-Corp?
Original post by Trudie Longren of Demand Media
S corporations are entities with a special tax status. Income, losses, deductions and credits are reported to the Internal Revenue Service directly by the shareholder on her personal income taxes, rather than by the corporation. Because S corporation shareholders declare the business income or loss solely on personal income tax, they avoid double taxation. Shares in an S corporation can be given away if the gift complies with Internal Revenue Code restrictions.
The Internal Revenue Code restricts the kinds of shareholders who can own shares in an S corporation. If you give shares away, you must take care to ensure that the recipient is one of the permissible shareholders for S corporations. You may give your shares to individuals and certain trusts and estates that comply with the Internal Revenue Code specifications.
You can give your shares only to eligible corporations. The Internal Revenue Code limits what types of corporations can own shares in an S corporation. Consequently, you may not give away S shares to certain types of financial institutions, international sales companies based in the U.S., or insurance companies.
The Internal Revenue Code does not permit shareholders of an S corporation to be partnerships or non-resident aliens. Therefore, you may not give your shares away to such entities or persons.
The Internal Revenue Code stipulates that there may be no more than 100 shareholders in an S corporation. When giving away shares, you must ensure that the total number of shareholders will not exceed the limit after the shares are given away.
- IRS: S Corporations
- Morebusiness.com: Different Types of Corporations -- Advantages/Disadvantages of Corporations
- Business Management Daily: Give Away S Corp Shares to Cut Income, Payroll, Estate Tax
- The Joy of Business: Julia Chanteray Talks -- How To Give Away Shares in Your Business
About the Author
Trudie Longren began writing in 2008 for legal publications, including the "American Journal of Criminal Law." She speaks English, Spanish, French, Dutch and Arabic. Longren holds a Bachelor of Science in foreign service from Georgetown University, a Juris Doctor from Columbia University and a Master of Laws from Utrecht University.
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