legal – What to do when you genuinely don’t understand anything about taxes, yet are apparently expected to pay them for your Bitcoin?
I’ve just read a massive webpage from Swedish Tax Agency about Bitcoin. I’m not trying to “be cute” here, but I must say that I didn’t understand a single thing of it. I understand Swedish perfectly, yet have no clue whatsoever what is being said on that page.
It doesn’t seem to be available in English, so maybe it’s not very useful to link to it here.
All I can interpret from the page is that the government violently hates Bitcoin and I’m supposed to hand them all my money because otherwise they (supposedly) will throw me in prison. Ever since I first got into Bitcoin, I have had zero thoughts or intentions of ever giving anyone one single satoshi besides the transaction fees. The concept never even struck me. It felt like one of the main points of Bitcoin to get rid of all that stupid BS.
The rules for when and how and how much to pay, and even in what currency, are so incredibly cryptic and complex as to make me seriously unable to comprehend them.
If I cannot understand the laws/regulations, what am I supposed to do? They talk about all kinds of forms and special cases and apparently expect me to calculate all sorts of things and hand them huge portions of my hard-earned BTC. I already have so little, and now they want to take a massive chunk of that away?
I regret trying to read up on this because now it seems like I can never buy anything (such as a place to live) or even mention that I own any BTC or they’ll come with the cops and drag me away to a cell and/or seize all my electronics. Or maybe “just” punish me financially with huge fees or something. Again, they make it extremely unclear, but use a very hostile and arrogant language.
I wish I were exaggerating and that I’m just “acting dumb”, but I honestly cannot comprehend the information on that page. It seems to me that it has been deliberately designed to not be understandable, as to make people who read it scared and stay away from Bitcoin entirely. How on Earth can other people comprehend any of this? I’m not legally “mentally challenged”.
What should I do? Re-reading the page over and over isn’t going to help, just as doing the same never helps me in other contexts. I don’t want to get into any trouble, but I also cannot give them any of my Bitcoin, nor pay for any theoretical “gains” that I’ve supposedly made, using fiat. I have virtually no fiat money at all, and if I’m going to buy a home, I want to do it directly with Bitcoin — not converting it to fiat. I don’t know if that makes a difference.
Apparently, I have the brain capacity to deal with Bitcoin Core, and even automate it with its API, but still feel like a 5-year-old child when seeing those tax rules. Not only is it “boring”; it’s utterly nonsensical to me. Again, it feels like they do it in purpose. Nothing is made clear whatsoever.
If it matters: All my Bitcoin were paid either with Localbitcoins in early 2013 (prior to KYC/AML, using local bank transfer), and later Bisq (no KYC/AML, P2P, SEPA bank transfers). I have never used any centralized exchange, but it’s not like I’ve been fully anonymous still.
I’m obviously afraid of sending them a letter and asking about my specific situation, because then they will know that I have coins and probably start pestering me about “unpaid taxes” or something. I seriously never even thought about this until quite recently, today even. To me, Bitcoin was (and is) completely separate from the fiat money system, and thus their taxes cannot apply to this. I was prompted to look into this after seeing somebody mention taxes for Bitcoin in a USA context.