Cash Election Dividends Paid by Real Estate Investment Trusts and Regulated Investment Companies: IRS Revenue Procedure Eliminates Need for REITs and RICs to Obtain IRS Rulings on Cash Election Dividends

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP - August 14, 2017
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On August 11, 2017, the Internal Revenue Service (the “IRS”) issued Revenue Procedure 2017-45 (the “New Revenue Procedure”), which provides that certain stock distributions made by real estate investment trusts (“REITs”) and regulated investment companies (“RICs”) will be treated as taxable distributions for the purpose of determining both (1) the dividends-paid deduction of the REIT or RIC and (2) the treatment of the REIT’s or RIC’s shareholders.  The New Revenue Procedure makes permanent similar, temporary guidance previously issued by the IRS that expired after 2012.  Unlike the earlier guidance, the New Revenue Procedure requires that a greater minimum amount of cash (at least 20%) be received by shareholders as part of the stock distributions.