Anyone being paid by direct deposit in the United States can sign up for Bitwage and get a bank account that allows them to be paid in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Bitcoin Cash.
Employers can also reap additional benefits by signing up for Bitwage by withholding a portion of an employee's net pay and then paying that portion through Bitwage.
This article is intended to be a guide for those new to crypto being paid through Bitwage.
How much should I get in crypto?
It's up to you! We recommend picking a nice, round number like $25 or $200 rather than a percentage. A good rule of thumb is to pick an amount such that you wouldn't panic if it lost a lot of value in the short-term.
Bitcoin, Ether, Bitcoin Cash, which one should I get?
Bitcoin is the first cryptocurrency, created in 2009. It is the largest by market capitalization and drives most of the growth in the crypto space. If you're not familiar with cryptocurrencies, it's the one you want.
Many large institutions and investors began to adopt Bitcoin space in late 2020, early 2021.
Ether, the native token of the Ethereum network, is the second-largest network. Simply put, it powers decentralized applications on its network. Ethereum's applications – called dapps – are quite popular and it's expected that developers will be adding onto the network for many years.
Bitcoin Cash is an offshoot of the original Bitcoin and is consistently among the top ten cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.
Where does Bitwage hold my crypto?
Bitwage is a non-custodial service. We immediately convert your funds to crypto and send them to an address of your choice. Addresses are where crypto is held and can correspond to an exchange account, a software wallet, or a hardware wallet.
How should I store my crypto
You can get your crypto from Bitwage to an exchange deposit address provided by an exchange (Coinbase and Gemini are most popular in the U.S.). Once your account is created, look for a deposit address you can copy into Bitwage.
For security reasons, most serious crypto users will not keep too many funds on an exchange. You don't control the crypto there and if it's hacked because of the exchange's negligence, you lose out. By controlling your crypto in your own wallet, you take responsibility for it.
A good rule of thumb is to keep no more than two weeks' salary worth on an exchange. It's a fine place to start because you know you'll always be able to get your funds through your email.
This is the popular option for storing your crypto because the private keys giving access to the funds on the wallet are created and stored offline. A hardware wallet is a physical device you use to control your crypto funds.
Software wallets are applications on your computer or phone you can use to store crypto. They offer more control than an exchange, but less security than a hardware wallet because your private keys are exposed to anyone who can access your computer.
You can use Bitcoin.org's wallet guide to choose a Bitcoin wallet.
How does getting paid in crypto affect my taxes?
Since you've already been taxed on the funds used to buy crypto on Bitwage, there are no tax implications for getting the crypto. Crypto is considered an asset and is taxed like a stock bought outside a retirement account would be, meaning once it's sold, capital gains or losses will be reported for that year's taxes.
For example, if you buy .01 Bitcoin at an average price of $32,000 (total spent $320) and then sell at $47,000 for proceeds of $470, your total taxable capital gains will be $150. Taxes will only be due when you sell. See here for more on capital gains.
How do I get started!?