Calculating S Corp Stock and Debt Basis: Avoiding Loss Limitations and Excess Distributions

Recording of a 110-minute CPE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Recorded event now available

This webinar will provide tax professionals and advisers with the tools and understanding to correctly calculate S corp shareholders’ stock basis and debt basis and to effectively advise clients to avoid negative tax consequences due to loss limitations or excess distributions.


Calculating basis for S corporation shareholders is a time-consuming exercise for tax professionals. Accurately calculating basis is critical to determine how much a shareholder can withdraw in distributions without recognizing taxable income. When a shareholder takes more in distributions than his basis, the excess distribution is taxable as a capital gain.

Tracking basis is also important in determining whether shareholders can deduct S corporation losses on their personal returns. Taking losses in excess of basis can result in a disallowance of the pass-through loss and unexpected tax consequences.

Another challenge for the tax adviser is calculating S corp shareholder’s debt basis. A shareholder’s direct loan to the corporation creates debt basis that can be used to offset distribution gain or loss limitation rules. However, the use of debt basis must be tracked correctly and in accordance with debt basis rules, especially the new IRS regs on “back-to-back” loans.

Listen as our experienced panel of tax professionals provides a detailed roadmap of calculating stock basis, debt basis and the interrelation of distributions to basis, and outlines best practices to help S corp shareholders avoid unnecessary tax.


  1. Mechanics of calculating stock basis
  2. Items that increase stock basis
  3. Items that decrease stock basis
  4. Ordering rules
  5. Tracking basis against distributions to avoid current double taxation
  6. Loss limitation rules
  7. Debt basis rules and calculations
  8. Basis strategies for end of business


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • Calculating and maintaining accurate S corp stock basis
  • Understanding basis items specific to S corporations
  • Applying loss limitation rules
  • Identifying and tracking debt basis
  • Calculating basis with a view toward sale, liquidation or redemption

Learning Objectives

Upon completing this webinar, you will be able to:

  • Ascertain how to correctly calculate S corporations shareholders’ stock and debt basis
  • Determine how much a shareholder can withdraw without recognizing taxable income
  • Distinguish items that increase or decrease a shareholder’s tax basis
  • Verify that debt basis is tracked in accordance with the debt basis rules
  • Establish that basis is tracked against distributions to avoid double taxation


Robert S. Barnett, Partner
Capell Barnett Matalon & Schoenfeld, Jericho, N.Y.

Mr. Barnett practice encompasses business and tax planning, estate planning and federal and state tax dispute resolution, among other engagements. He is a frequent writer on tax topics for professional journals.

Darren J. Mills, Esq., CPA
Mills Estate & Tax Law, Red Bank, N.J.

Mr. Mills has more than 20 years of experience advising both middle market companies and large multi-nationals regarding complex federal and international tax issues. He also advises both strategic and financial buyers in tax due diligence and structuring as well as providing sell-side due diligence/structuring. He has taught classes on S Corporations at Seton Hall University and the University of Baltimore School of Law.

EA Credit

Enrolled Agent credit processing is available for an additional fee per person.

EA Processing $5.00


Recorded Event

Includes full event recording plus handouts.

Note: Self-study CPE and EA credits are not offered on recorded events.

Recorded Webinar Download $147.00

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Recorded Audio Download (MP3) $147.00

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National Registry of CPE Sponsors

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IRS Approved Provider

Strafford is an IRS-approved continuing education provider offering certified courses for Enrolled Agents (EA) and Tax Return Preparers (RTRP).

Program Materials

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Program Materials

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CPE Credit

Strafford is a NASBA CPE sponsor and our live webinars qualify for CPE credits. They offer you a high quality, cost effective, and convenient CPE option, with no lost travel time or expenses.

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EA Credit

Strafford is an IRS approved continuing education provider and this course is approved for 2 enrolled agent (EA) credit hours.

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Customer Reviews

I purchased the conference a few minutes after it began and the customer service rep was very helpful and got me signed up and logged into the conference very quickly.

Joanna Johnston

Savas Greene & Company

The conference was technical, informative and presented at a good pace.

Krystal Ching


I loved the tools and handouts. Every CPE class should offer these kind of tools.

Jackie Meyer

Sample and Bailey

I liked the concentration on specific issues and examples.

Edita Rimalovsky

Komisar Brady & Co.

Excellent seminar! It was efficient and the important topics were covered at just the right pace; no time was wasted covering information that the participants already knew.

Rhonda G. Williams, CPA

Barraclough & Associates

or call 1-800-926-7926

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