Comment: He did not go to jail for paying the coins.

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He did not go to jail for paying the coins.

He went to jail because he kept two sets of books and "bought" the coins back from those he paid them to with FRNs.

He was clearly running a scam, though I'm sure he thought he was doing something good.

The coins ARE legal tender but ONLY for face value. Since current prices are NOT accurately stated in real dollars, one would be a fool to pay a silver or gold coin to anyone for goods or services without a steep "discount" for using that method of payment.

Accepting gold and silver CAN be done legally without running afoul of the IRS, but it requires that you mark the receipt of the coins for face, and that you use them at face. If you offer an acceptable discount to someone paying you, you can provide comparable value for the specie. You then book the coins at face, and will show a "loss" on the transaction. The kicker is to then do the same with people you buy with when you spend those coins.

The IRS can't require 'market value" booking. But they can sue you for booking at face value when it lowers your tax bill, but market value when it inflates your assets. You have to pick ONE value method and stick with it for all purposes and for all accounts.

You also don't want to "sell" the coins for FRNs, because then whatever advantage you gained by showing a loss on a steep discount sale, you lose by realizing a gain on the "sale" of the coins. The key is to use them in trade both ways - at face, but for value.