Final Foreign Partner Withholding Regulations To Be Deferred Until 2023

The IRS has announced that it intends to defer until 2023 the applicability of certain final regulations under Code Sec. 1446(a) and (f) relating to withholding of tax on foreign partners’ share of effectively connected income.

Withholding Provisions on Transfers of Interests in Publicly Traded Partnerships Deferred
The amendments will defer the applicability date to January 1, 2023, for certain provisions relating to (1) withholding under Code Sec. 1446(f) on transfers of interests in publicly traded partnerships ( “PTP interests”); (2) withholding under Code Sec. 1446(a) on distributions made with respect to PTP interests; and (3) withholding under Code Sec. 1446(f)(4) by partnerships on distributions to transferees.

Code Sec. 864(c)(8) generally provides that gain or loss derived by a foreign person on the sale or exchange of an interest in a partnership engaged in a U.S. trade or business is treated as effectively connected gain or loss and, therefore, is subject to U.S. tax. Code Sec. 1446(f)(1) generally requires a transferee of an interest in a partnership to withhold 10 percent of the amount realized if any portion of the gain on the disposition would be treated under Code Sec. 864(c)(8) as effectively connected with the conduct of a trade or business within the United States. Code Sec. 1446(f)(4) provides that if a transferee fails to withhold on the disposition as required under Code Sec. 1446(f)(1), the partnership must withhold on distributions to the transferee.

Taxpayers May Rely on Deferral Prior to Amendments
The final foreign partner withholding regulations were published on November 30, 2020, in T.D. 9926, I.R.B. 2020-51, 1602, and the provisions whose applicability dates the amendments will defer generally would have applied to transfers and distributions that occur on or after January 1, 2022. Taxpayers may rely on the deferrals announced in the notice prior to amendments being issued.

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