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IRS.gov Website
Publication 1544
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117648

Who Must
File Form 8300?(p1)

rule
Generally, any person in a trade or business who receives more than $10,000 in cash in a single transaction or in related transactions must file Form 8300.
For example, you may have to file Form 8300 if you are a dealer in jewelry, furniture, boats, aircraft, or automobiles; a pawnbroker; an attorney; a real estate broker; an insurance company; or a travel agency. Special rules for clerks of federal or state courts are discussed later under Bail received by court clerks.
However, you do not have to file Form 8300 if the transaction is not related to your trade or business. For example, if you own a jewelry store and sell your personal automobile for more than $10,000 in cash, you would not submit a Form 8300 for that transaction.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117649

Transaction defined.(p2)

rule
A "transaction" occurs when:
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117650

Person defined.(p2)

rule
A "person" includes an individual, a company, a corporation, a partnership, an association, a trust, or an estate.
Exempt organizations, including employee plans, are also "persons." However, exempt organizations do not have to file Form 8300 for a more-than-$10,000 charitable cash contribution they receive since it is not received in the course of a trade or business.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117651

Foreign transactions.(p2)

rule
You do not have to file Form 8300 if the entire transaction (including the receipt of cash) takes place outside of: However, you must file Form 8300 if any part of the transaction (including the receipt of cash) occurs in Puerto Rico or a possession or territory of the United States and you are subject to the Internal Revenue Code.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117652

Bail received by court clerks.(p2)

rule
Any clerk of a federal or state court who receives more than $10,000 in cash as bail for an individual charged with any of the following criminal offenses must file Form 8300:
  1. Any federal offense involving a controlled substance,
  2. Racketeering,
  3. Money laundering, and
  4. Any state offense substantially similar to (1), (2), or (3) above.
For more information about the rules that apply to court clerks, see Section 1.6050I-2 of the Income Tax Regulations.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117653

What Payments
Must Be Reported?(p2)

rule
You must file Form 8300 to report cash paid to you if it is:
  1. Over $10,000,
  2. Received as:
    1. One lump sum of over $10,000,
    2. Installment payments that cause the total cash received within 1 year of the initial payment to total more than $10,000, or
    3. Other previously unreportable payments that cause the total cash received within a 12-month period to total more than $10,000,
  3. Received in the course of your trade or business,
  4. Received from the same buyer (or agent), and
  5. Received in a single transaction or in related transactions (defined later).
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000117654

What Is Cash?(p2)

rule
Cash is:
  1. The coins and currency of the United States (and any other country), and
  2. A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order you receive, if it has a face amount of $10,000 or less and you receive it in:
    1. A designated reporting transaction (defined later), or
    2. Any transaction in which you know the payer is trying to avoid the reporting of the transaction on Form 8300.
EIC
Cash may include a cashier's check even if it is called a "treasurer's check" or "bank check."
Cash does not include a check drawn on an individual's personal account.
A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order with a face amount of more than $10,000 is not treated as cash. These items are not defined as cash and you do not have to file Form 8300 when you receive them because, if they were bought with currency, the bank or other financial institution that issued them must file a report on FinCEN Form 104.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137558

Example 1.(p2)

You are a coin dealer. Bob Green buys gold coins from you for $13,200. He pays for them with $6,200 in U.S. currency and a cashier's check having a face amount of $7,000. The cashier's check is treated as cash. You have received more than $10,000 cash and must file Form 8300 for this transaction.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137559

Example 2.(p2)

You are a retail jeweler. Mary North buys an item of jewelry from you for $12,000. She pays for it with a personal check payable to you in the amount of $9,600 and traveler's checks totaling $2,400. Because the personal check is not treated as cash, you have not received more than $10,000 cash in the transaction. You do not have to file Form 8300.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137560

Example 3.(p2)

You are a boat dealer. Emily Jones buys a boat from you for $16,500. She pays for it with a cashier's check payable to you in the amount of $16,500. The cashier's check is not treated as cash because its face amount is more than $10,000. You do not have to file Form 8300 for this transaction.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137561

Designated
Reporting Transaction(p2)

rule
A designated reporting transaction is the retail sale of any of the following:
  1. A consumer durable, such as an automobile or boat. A consumer durable is property, other than land or buildings, that:
    1. Is suitable for personal use,
    2. Can reasonably be expected to last at least 1 year under ordinary use,
    3. Has a sales price of more than $10,000, and
    4. Can be seen or touched (tangible property).
    For example, a $20,000 car is a consumer durable, but a $20,000 dump truck or factory machine is not. The car is a consumer durable even if you sell it to a buyer who will use it in a business.
  2. A collectible (for example, a work of art, rug, antique, metal, gem, stamp, or coin).
  3. Travel or entertainment, if the total sales price of all items sold for the same trip or entertainment event in one transaction (or related transactions) is more than $10,000.
To figure the total sales price of all items sold for a trip or entertainment event, you include the sales price of items such as airfare, hotel rooms, and admission tickets.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137562

Example.(p2)

You are a travel agent. Ed Johnson asks you to charter a passenger airplane to take a group to a sports event in another city. He also asks you to book hotel rooms and admission tickets for the group. In payment, he gives you two money orders, each for $6,000. You have received more than $10,000 cash in this designated reporting transaction. You must file Form 8300.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137563

Retail sale.(p2)

rule
The term "retail sale" means any sale made in the course of a trade or business that consists mainly of making sales to ultimate consumers.
Thus, if your business consists mainly of making sales to ultimate consumers, all sales you make in the course of that business are retail sales. This includes any sales of items that will be resold.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137564

Broker or intermediary.(p2)

rule
A designated reporting transaction includes the retail sale of items (1), (2), or (3) of the preceding list, even if the funds are received by a broker or other intermediary, rather than directly by the seller.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137565

Exceptions to Definition of Cash(p2)

rule
A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order you received in a designated reporting transaction is not treated as cash if one of the following exceptions applies.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137566

Exception for certain bank loans.(p3)

rule
A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order is not treated as cash if it is the proceeds from a bank loan. As proof that it is from a bank loan, you may rely on a copy of the loan document, a written statement or lien instruction from the bank, or similar proof.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137567

Example.(p3)

You are a car dealer. Mandy White buys a new car from you for $11,500. She pays you with $2,000 of U.S. currency and a cashier's check for $9,500 payable to you and her. You can tell that the cashier's check is the proceeds of a bank loan because it includes instructions to you to have a lien put on the car as security for the loan. For this reason, the cashier's check is not treated as cash. You do not have to file Form 8300 for the transaction.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137568

Exception for certain installment sales.(p3)

rule
A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order is not treated as cash if it is received in payment on a promissory note or an installment sales contract (including a lease that is considered a sale for federal tax purposes). However, this exception applies only if:
  1. You use similar notes or contracts in other sales to ultimate consumers in the ordinary course of your trade or business, and
  2. The total payments for the sale that you receive on or before the 60th day after the sale are 50% or less of the purchase price.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137569

Exception for certain down payment plans.(p3)

rule
A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order is not treated as cash if you received it in payment for a consumer durable or collectible, and all three of the following statements are true.
  1. You receive it under a payment plan requiring:
    1. One or more down payments, and
    2. Payment of the rest of the purchase price by the date of sale.
  2. You receive it more than 60 days before the date of sale.
  3. You use payment plans with the same or substantially similar terms when selling to ultimate consumers in the ordinary course of your trade or business.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137570

Exception for travel and entertainment.(p3)

rule
A cashier's check, bank draft, traveler's check, or money order received for travel or entertainment is not treated as cash if all three of the following statements are true.
  1. You receive it under a payment plan requiring:
    1. One or more down payments, and
    2. Payment of the rest of the purchase price by the earliest date that any travel or entertainment item (such as airfare) is furnished for the trip or entertainment event.
  2. You receive it more than 60 days before the date on which the final payment is due.
  3. You use payment plans with the same or substantially similar terms when selling to ultimate consumers in the ordinary course of your trade or business.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137571

Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN)(p3)

rule
You must furnish the correct TIN of the person or persons from whom you receive the cash. If the transaction is conducted on the behalf of another person or persons, you must furnish the TIN of that person or persons. If you do not know a person's TIN, you have to ask for it. You may be subject to penalties for an incorrect or missing TIN.
There are three types of TINs.
  1. The TIN for an individual, including a sole proprietor, is the individual's social security number (SSN).
  2. The TIN for a nonresident alien individual who needs a TIN but is not eligible to get an SSN is an IRS individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN). An ITIN has nine digits, similar to an SSN.
  3. The TIN for other persons, including corporations, partnerships, and estates, is the employer identification number (EIN).
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137572

Exception.(p3)

rule
You are not required to provide the TIN of a person who is a nonresident alien individual or a foreign organization if that person or foreign organization:
  1. Does not have income effectively connected with the conduct of a U.S. trade or business;
  2. Does not have an office or place of business, or a fiscal or paying agent in the United States;
  3. Does not file a federal tax return;
  4. Does not furnish a withholding certificate described in §1.1441-1(e)(2) or (3) or 1.1441-5(c)(2)(iv) or (3)(iii) to the extent required under 1.1441-1(e)(4)(vii);
  5. Does not have to furnish a TIN on any return, statement, or other document as required by the income tax regulations under section 897 or 1445; or
  6. In the case of a nonresident alien individual, the individual has not chosen to file a joint federal income tax return with a spouse who is a U.S. citizen or resident.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137573

What Is a
Related Transaction?(p3)

rule
Any transactions between a buyer (or an agent of the buyer) and a seller that occur within a 24-hour period are related transactions. If you receive over $10,000 in cash during two or more transactions with one buyer in a 24-hour period, you must treat the transactions as one transaction and report the payments on Form 8300.
For example, if you sell two products for $6,000 each to the same customer in 1 day and the customer pays you in cash, these are related transactions. Because they total $12,000 (more than $10,000), you must file Form 8300.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137574

More than 24 hours between transactions.(p3)

rule
Transactions are related even if they are more than 24 hours apart if you know, or have reason to know, that each is one of a series of connected transactions.
For example, you are a travel agent. A client pays you $8,000 in cash for a trip. Two days later, the same client pays you $3,000 more in cash to include another person on the trip. These are related transactions, and you must file Form 8300 to report them.
taxmap/pubs/p1544-001.htm#en_us_publink1000137575

What About
Suspicious Transactions?(p3)

rule
If you receive $10,000 or less in cash, you may voluntarily file Form 8300 if the transaction appears to be suspicious.
A transaction is suspicious if it appears that a person is trying to cause you not to file Form 8300 or is trying to cause you to file a false or incomplete Form 8300, or if there is a sign of possible illegal activity.
If you are suspicious, you are encouraged to call the local IRS Criminal Investigation Division as soon as possible. Or, you can call the FinCEN Financial Institution Hotline toll free at 1-866-556-3974.