Globally (Not So) Mobile Employees: Taxation of Equity Awards in a COVID-19 World

By and on May 14, 2020

The US tax rules governing the taxation of equity awards for globally mobile employees are complex and in some cases, uncertain. Among other things, employers must consider the type of award, grant and vesting dates, and sourcing rules to ensure proper reporting and withholding for non-US employees that have worked in the United States. The travel restrictions have caused US multinational businesses to review their existing processes for how they compute and report taxable income for non-US employees working in the United States, especially with regard to vesting of equity arrangements.

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AvatarGregory M. Weigand
Gregory (Greg) M. Weigand focuses his practice on domestic and international tax matters for multinational companies, closely held businesses, investment funds and high-net-wealth individuals. He advises US and foreign-based publicly traded and privately held companies on global restructuring transactions, cross-border transactions and implements tax-efficient global structures. He advises clients on issues such as GILTI, Subpart F and FDII. Greg regularly advises international clients investing in the US across many assets classes, including real estate, and assists them with negotiating joint venture agreements and other cross-border tax structuring matters. He also advises asset managers and fund sponsors with the structuring of investment funds across various strategies, in addition to advising funds on transactional matters. In addition, Greg frequently represents international investors investing in US-based investment funds. Greg frequently serves as a speaker on domestic and international tax issues and authors articles on various tax matters.


AvatarRyan J. Coyle
Ryan J. Coyle focuses his practice on international tax matters, with an emphasis on providing tax-efficient restructuring solutions for high-net-worth international families and their closely held businesses. In addition to advising US-based families on income, gift, and estate tax matters, he assists non-US families with tax matters relating to pre-immigration planning and inbound investment. Ryan has extensive experience advising on US anti-deferral legislation (i.e., Subpart F and GILTI) applicable to non-US entities that become controlled foreign corporations as a result of migration to the United States. In addition, he advises on planning related to tax treaty interpretation, expatriation, qualified small business stock (QSBS), the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA), and international enforcement initiatives such as the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and the Common Reporting Standard (CRS). Ryan also advises non-US residents on US gift and estate tax rules affecting non-US residents with US income and assets, as well as US residents with non-US income and assets. In conjunction with such planning, Ryan assists high-net-worth individuals in establishing complex trust structures and other vehicles to protect wealth and to efficiently transfer wealth from one generation to another. He advises on the formation of private trust companies to serve as trustees of family trusts and assists trust companies with compliance requirements. Having been based in London and Hong Kong at various points in his career, Ryan has unique insight into the needs of global clients and speaks extensively on topics related to international taxation.

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