26 CFR § 1.1031(a)-2 - Additional rules for exchanges of personal property.

§ 1.1031(a)-2 Additional rules for exchanges of personal property.

(a) Introduction. Section 1.1031(a)-1(b) provides that the nonrecognition rules of section 1031 do not apply to an exchange of one kind or class of property for property of a different kind or class. This section contains additional rules for determining whether personal property has been exchanged for property of a like kind or like class. Personal properties of a like class are considered to be of a “like kind” for purposes of section 1031. In addition, an exchange of properties of a like kind may qualify under section 1031 regardless of whether the properties are also of a like class. In determining whether exchanged properties are of a like kind, no inference is to be drawn from the fact that the properties are not of a like class. Under paragraph (b) of this section, depreciable tangible personal properties are of a like class if they are either within the same General Asset Class (as defined in paragraph (b)(2) of this section) or within the same Product Class (as defined in paragraph (b)(3) of this section). Paragraph (c) of this section provides rules for exchanges of intangible personal property and nondepreciable personal property.

(b) Depreciable tangible personal property -

(1) General rule. Depreciable tangible personal property is exchanged for property of a “like kind” under section 1031 if the property is exchanged for property of a like kind or like class. Depreciable tangible personal property is of a like class to other depreciable tangible personal property if the exchanged properties are either within the same General Asset Class or within the same Product Class. A single property may not be classified within more than one General Asset Class or within more than one Product Class. In addition, property classified within any General Asset Class may not be classified within a Product Class. A property's General Asset Class or Product Class is determined as of the date of the exchange.

(2) General Asset Classes. Except as provided in paragraphs (b)(4) and (b)(5) of this section, property within a General Asset Class consists of depreciable tangible personal property described in one of asset classes 00.11 through 00.28 and 00.4 of Rev. Proc. 87-56, 1987-2 C.B. 674. These General Asset Classes describe types of depreciable tangible personal property that frequently are used in many businesses. The General Asset Classes are as follows:

(i) Office furniture, fixtures, and equipment (asset class 00.11),

(ii) Information systems (computers and peripheral equipment) (asset class 00.12),

(iii) Data handling equipment, except computers (asset class 00.13),

(iv) Airplanes (airframes and engines), except those used in commercial or contract carrying of passengers or freight, and all helicopters (airframes and engines) (asset class 00.21),

(v) Automobiles, taxis (asset class 00.22),

(vi) Buses (asset class 00.23),

(vii) Light general purpose trucks (asset class 00.241),

(viii) Heavy general purpose trucks (asset class 00.242),

(ix) Railroad cars and locomotives, except those owned by railroad transportation companies (asset class 00.25),

(x) Tractor units for use over-the-road (asset class 00.26),

(xi) Trailers and trailer-mounted containers (asset class 00.27),

(xii) Vessels, barges, tugs, and similar water-transportation equipment, except those used in marine construction (asset class 00.28), and

(xiii) Industrial steam and electric generation and/or distribution systems (asset class 00.4).

(3) Product classes. Except as provided in paragraphs (b)(4) and (5) of this section, or as provided by the Commissioner in published guidance of general applicability, property within a product class consists of depreciable tangible personal property that is described in a 6-digit product class within Sectors 31, 32, and 33 (pertaining to manufacturing industries) of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), set forth in Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget, North American Industry Classification System, United States, 2002 (NAICS Manual), as periodically updated. Copies of the NAICS Manual may be obtained from the National Technical Information Service, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, and may be accessed on the internet. Sectors 31 through 33 of the NAICS Manual contain listings of specialized industries for the manufacture of described products and equipment. For this purpose, any 6-digit NAICS product class with a last digit of 9 (a miscellaneous category) is not a product class for purposes of this section. If a property is listed in more than one product class, the property is treated as listed in any one of those product classes. A property's 6-digit product class is referred to as the property's NAICS code.

(4) Modifications of NAICS product classes. The product classes of the NAICS Manual may be updated or otherwise modified from time to time as the manual is updated, effective on or after the date of the modification. The NAICS Manual generally is modified every five years, in years ending in a 2 or 7 (such as 2002, 2007, and 2012). The applicability date of the modified NAICS Manual is announced in the Federal Register and generally is January 1 of the year the NAICS Manual is modified. Taxpayers may rely on these modifications as they become effective in structuring exchanges under this section. Taxpayers may rely on the previous NAICS Manual for transfers of property made by a taxpayer during the one-year period following the effective date of the modification. For transfers of property made by a taxpayer on or after January 1, 1997, and on or before January 1, 2003, the NAICS Manual of 1997 may be used for determining product classes of the exchanged property.

(5) Administrative procedures for revising general asset classes and product classes. The Commissioner may, through published guidance of general applicability, supplement, modify, clarify, or update the guidance relating to the classification of properties provided in this paragraph (b). (See § 601.601(d)(2) of this chapter.) For example, the Commissioner may determine not to follow (in whole or in part) a general asset class for purposes of identifying property of like class, may determine not to follow (in whole or in part) any modification of product classes published in the NAICS Manual, or may determine that other properties not listed within the same or in any product class or general asset class nevertheless are of a like class. The Commissioner also may determine that two items of property that are listed in separate product classes or in product classes with a last digit of 9 are of a like class, or that an item of property that has a NAICS code is of a like class to an item of property that does not have a NAICS code.

(6) No inference outside of section 1031. The rules provided in this section concerning the use of general asset classes or product classes are limited to exchanges under section 1031. No inference is intended with respect to the classification of property for other purposes, such as depreciation.

(7) Examples. The application of this paragraph (b) may be illustrated by the following examples:

Example 1.
Taxpayer A transfers a personal computer (asset class 00.12) to B in exchange for a printer (asset class 00.12). With respect to A, the properties exchanged are within the same General Asset Class and therefore are of a like class.
Example 2.
Taxpayer C transfers an airplane (asset class 00.21) to D in exchange for a heavy general purpose truck (asset class 00.242). The properties exchanged are not of a like class because they are within different General Asset Classes. Because each of the properties is within a General Asset Class, the properties may not be classified within a Product Class. The airplane and heavy general purpose truck are also not of a like kind. Therefore, the exchange does not qualify for nonrecognition of gain or loss under section 1031.
Example 3.
Taxpayer E transfers a grader to F in exchange for a scraper. Neither property is within any of the general asset classes. However, both properties are within the same product class (NAICS code 333120). The grader and scraper are of a like class and deemed to be of a like kind for purposes of section 1031.
Example 4.
Taxpayer G transfers a personal computer (asset class 00.12), an airplane (asset class 00.21) and a sanding machine (NAICS code 333210), to H in exchange for a printer (asset class 00.12), a heavy general purpose truck (asset class 00.242) and a lathe (NAICS code 333210). The personal computer and the printer are of a like class because they are within the same general asset class. The sanding machine and the lathe are of a like class because they are within the same product class (although neither property is within any of the general asset classes). The airplane and the heavy general purpose truck are neither within the same general asset class nor within the same product class, and are not of a like kind.

(8) Transition rule. Properties within the same product classes based on the 4-digit codes contained in Division D of the Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget, Standard Industrial Classification Manual (1987), will be treated as property of a like class for transfers of property made by taxpayers on or before May 19, 2005.

(c) Intangible personal property and nondepreciable personal property -

(1) General rule. An exchange of intangible personal property of nondepreciable personal property qualifies for nonrecognition of gain or loss under section 1031 only if the exchanged properties are of a like kind. No like classes are provided for these properties. Whether intangible personal property is of a like kind to other intangible personal property generally depends on the nature or character of the rights involved (e.g., a patent or a copyright) and also on the nature or character of the underlying property to which the intangible personal property relates.

(2) Goodwill and going concern value. The goodwill or going concern value of a business is not of a like kind to the goodwill or going concern value of another business.

(3) Examples. The application of this paragraph (c) may be illustrated by the following examples:

Example 1.
Taxpayer K exchanges a copyright on a novel for a copyright on a different novel. The properties exchanged are of a like kind.
Example 2.
Taxpayer J exchanges a copyright on a novel for a copyright on a song. The properties exchanged are not of a like kind.

(d) Effective date. Except as otherwise provided in this paragraph (d), this section applies to exchanges occurring on or after April 11, 1991. Paragraphs (b)(3) through (b)(6), Example 3 and Example 4 of paragraph (b)(7), and paragraph (b)(8) of this section apply to transfers of property made by taxpayers on or after August 12, 2004. However, taxpayers may apply paragraphs (b)(3) through (b)(6), and Example 3 and Example 4 of paragraph (b)(7) of this section to transfers of property made by taxpayers on or after January 1, 1997, in taxable years for which the period of limitation for filing a claim for refund or credit under section 6511 has not expired.

[T.D. 8343, 56 FR 14854, Apr. 12, 1991, as amended by T.D. 9151, 69 FR 50068, Aug. 13, 2004; T.D. 9202, 70 FR 28819, May 19, 2005]