Whether you like to play the ponies, roll the dice or pull the slots, your gambling winnings are taxable. You must report all your gambling income on your tax return. If you’re a casual gambler, odds are good that these basic tax tips can help you at tax time next year:
1. Gambling income. Gambling income includes winnings from lotteries, horse racing and casinos. It also includes cash prizes and the fair market value of prizes like cars and trips.
2. Payer tax form. If you win, you may get a Form W-2G, Certain Gambling Winnings, from the payer. Generally W-2G’s are issues if you win $1,200.00 or more. The IRS also gets a copy of the W-2G. The payer issues the form depending on the type of game you played, the amount of your winnings and other factors. You’ll also get the form if the payer withholds taxes from what you won.
3. How to report winnings. You are required to report all your gambling winnings as income. This is true even if you don’t receive a Form W-2G. You normally report your winnings for the year on your tax return as ‘other income.’
4. How to deduct losses. You can deduct your gambling losses on Schedule A, Itemized Deductions. The amount you can deduct is limited to the amount of the gambling income you report on your return.
5. Keep gambling receipts. You should keep track of your wins and losses. This includes keeping items such as a gambling log or diary, receipts, statements or tickets, even ATM transactions or bank records. If you are a slot machine player, the casino can also give you a Win/Loss Sheet, provided you use your “Players Card”.
This article is provided for information purposes only and should not be relied upon for legal or financial advice. We would be happy to discuss how the information in this article affects or may help you. For more details about this matter, please contact our offices at 847-466-7947 of 702-966-2770.
IRS CIRCULAR 230 DISCLOSURE: Pursuant to requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, any tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for purposes of avoiding penalties imposed under the United States Internal Revenue Code or promoting, marketing or recommending to another person any tax-related matter.