(a) In general - (1) Exchanges of property solely for property of a like kind. Section 1031(a)(1) provides an exception from the general rule requiring the recognition of gain or loss upon the sale or exchange of property. Under section 1031(a)(1), no gain or loss is recognized if property held for productive use in a trade or business or for investment is exchanged solely for property of a like kind to be held either for productive use in a trade or business or for investment. Under section 1031(a)(1), property held for productive use in a trade or business may be exchanged for property held for investment. Similarly, under section 1031(a)(1), property held for investment may be exchanged for property held for productive use in a trade or business. However, section 1031(a)(2) provides that section 1031(a)(1) does not apply to any exchange of -
(i) Stock in trade or other property held primarily for sale;
(ii) Stocks, bonds, or notes;
(iii) Other securities or evidences of indebtedness or interest;
(iv) Interests in a partnership;
(v) Certificates of trust or beneficial interests; or
(vi) Choses in action.
(2) Exchanges of property not solely for property of a like kind. A transfer is not within the provisions of section 1031(a) if, as part of the consideration, the taxpayer receives money or property which does not meet the requirements of section 1031(a), but the transfer, if otherwise qualified, will be within the provisions of either section 1031 (b) or (c). Similarly, a transfer is not within the provisions of section 1031(a) if, as part of the consideration, the other party to the exchange assumes a liability of the taxpayer (or acquires property from the taxpayer that is subject to a liability), but the transfer, if otherwise qualified, will be within the provisions of either section 1031 (b) or (c). A transfer of property meeting the requirements of section 1031(a) may be within the provisions of section 1031(a) even though the taxpayer transfers in addition property not meeting the requirements of section 1031(a) or money. However, the nonrecognition treatment provided by section 1031(a) does not apply to the property transferred which does not meet the requirements of section 1031(a).
(3) Exchanges after 2017. Pursuant to section 13303 of Public Law 115-97 (131 Stat. 2054), for exchanges beginning after December 31, 2017, section 1031 and 1.1031(a)-1, 1.1031(b)-2, 1.1031(d)-1T, 1.1031(d)-2, 1.1031(j)-1, 1.1031(k)-1, and references to section 1031 in §§ 1.1031(b)-1, 1.1031(c)-1, and 1.1031(d)-1, apply only to qualifying exchanges of real property (within the meaning of § 1.1031(a)-3) that is held for productive use in a trade or business, or for investment, and that is not held primarily for sale.
(b) Definition of “like kind.” As used in section 1031(a), the words like kind have reference to the nature or character of the property and not to its grade or quality. One kind or class of property may not, under that section, be exchanged for property of a different kind or class. The fact that any real estate involved is improved or unimproved is not material, for that fact relates only to the grade or quality of the property and not to its kind or class. Unproductive real estate held by one other than a dealer for future use or future realization of the increment in value is held for investment and not primarily for sale. For additional rules for exchanges of personal property, see § 1.1031 (a)-2.
(c) Examples of exchanges of property of a “like kind.” No gain or loss is recognized if (1) a taxpayer exchanges property held for productive use in his trade or business, together with cash, for other property of like kind for the same use, such as a truck for a new truck or a passenger automobile for a new passenger automobile to be used for a like purpose; or (2) a taxpayer who is not a dealer in real estate exchanges city real estate for a ranch or farm, or exchanges a leasehold of a fee with 30 years or more to run for real estate, or exchanges improved real estate for unimproved real estate; or (3) a taxpayer exchanges investment property and cash for investment property of a like kind.
(d) Examples of exchanges not solely in kind. Gain or loss is recognized if, for instance, a taxpayer exchanges (1) Treasury bonds maturing March 15, 1958, for Treasury bonds maturing December 15, 1968, unless section 1037(a) (or so much of section 1031 as relates to section 1037(a)) applies to such exchange, or (2) a real estate mortgage for consolidated farm loan bonds.
(e) Applicability dates - (1) Exchanges of partnership interests. The provisions of paragraph (a)(1) of this section relating to exchanges of partnership interests apply to transfers of property made by taxpayers on or after April 25, 1991.
(2) Exchanges after 2017. The provisions of paragraph (a)(3) of this section apply to exchanges beginning after December 2, 2020.
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