A recently released German document outlines the government’s stance as officially considering bitcoin a legal method of payment, like the Euro. They write,
“Virtual currencies (cryptocurrencies, e.g., Bitcoin) become the equivalent to legal means of payment, insofar as these so-called virtual currencies of those involved in the transaction as an alternative contractual and immediate means of payment have been accepted.”
The key difference here is that Germany wiill not apply any additional tax besides the standard EU VAT, or Europpean Union Value Added Tax. In contrast the United States government considers bitcoin a “property.” The controversial stance thus allows the US to consider bitcoin payments and transfers subject to capital gains tax.
Bitcoin’s intended goal was to replace traditional fiat, and thus Germany’s stance appears more aligned with the currency while the US government appears confused about the whole industry.