Involuntary Conversions - Real Estate Tax Tips

An involuntary conversion occurs when your property is destroyed, stolen, condemned, or disposed of under the threat of condemnation and you receive other property or money in payment, such as insurance or a condemnation award. Involuntary conversions are also called involuntary exchanges.

Reporting Gain or Loss

Gain or loss from an involuntary conversion of your property is usually recognized for tax purposes unless the property is your main home. You report the gain or deduct the loss on your tax return for the year you realize it. (You cannot deduct a loss from an involuntary conversion of property you held for personal use unless the loss resulted from a casualty or theft.) Personal casualty and theft losses of an individual, sustained in a tax year beginning after 2017, are deductible only to the extent they’re attributable to a federally declared disaster. The loss deduction is subject to the $100 limit per casualty and 10% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) limitation.

An exception to the rule above, limiting the personal casualty and theft loss deduction to losses attributable to a federally declared disaster, applies if you have personal casualty gains for the tax year. In this case, you will reduce your personal casualty gains by any casualty losses not attributable to a federally declared disaster. Any excess gain is used to reduce losses from a federally declared disaster. The 10% AGI limitation is applied to any remaining losses attributable to a federally declared disaster. See Publication 584.

However, depending on the type of property you receive, you may not have to report a gain on an involuntary conversion. You do not report the gain if you receive property that is similar or related in service or use to the converted property. Your basis for the new property is the same as your basis for the converted property. The gain on the involuntary conversion is deferred until a taxable sale or exchange occurs.


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