Reporting the T-Mobile Stock Giveaway on Your Tax Return

The company is promising to give customers shares of its stock, and that could create a headache at tax time.

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I’m a T-Mobile subscriber, and I see that the company is going to give stock to its customers. What do I need to do at tax time? Will I owe taxes on the stock?

All current and new customers will receive at least one share of T-Mobile stock, and customers who refer new members can receive up to 100 extra shares per year. T-Mobile (symbol TMUS) is currently selling at about $42 per share—up 8.6% over the past year and 24% over the past three years—but the gift could make tax filing more difficult. “It can complicate your tax situation if you have an otherwise simple tax return,” says Laurie Ziegler, an enrolled agent and managing member of Sass Accounting LLC, in Saukville, Wis.

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Kimberly Lankford
Contributing Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

As the "Ask Kim" columnist for Kiplinger's Personal Finance, Lankford receives hundreds of personal finance questions from readers every month. She is the author of Rescue Your Financial Life (McGraw-Hill, 2003), The Insurance Maze: How You Can Save Money on Insurance -- and Still Get the Coverage You Need (Kaplan, 2006), Kiplinger's Ask Kim for Money Smart Solutions (Kaplan, 2007) and The Kiplinger/BBB Personal Finance Guide for Military Families. She is frequently featured as a financial expert on television and radio, including NBC's Today Show, CNN, CNBC and National Public Radio.