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Gambling / Casinos / Taxes / IRS / American Gaming Association / Gaming / → All Tags
The IRS is suggesting a change in gambling tax laws. A new proposal would require gamblers to report winnings on slot machines, video poker, keno and bingo for jackpots of $600 or more. That's quite a cut compared to today's thresholds of $1,200 for slot and video poker players and $1,500 for keno players. The IRS has set a 90-day period for the casino industry to respond to the suggested changes.
If you’ve ever hit a $1,200 jackpot on a slot or video poker machine, you’ve probably had to sit around and wait for a casino employee to pay you and to sign off on your tax forms. Depending on the time of day and casino, this process could take anywhere from five to 30 minutes.
Gambling / Taxes / Players Clubs / → All Tags
We’re gamblers when it comes to just about everything in Vegas, but there’s one thing we don’t mess with and that’s taxes. Every state and country (Good luck, Canada) has its own tax laws when it comes to travel and gambling and it can all get a little confusing. We always recommend speaking with a certified tax professional before doing your taxes, but here are some tips to get you started.
Gambling winnings are all taxable and so are large comps (i.e., flights and vacations for high rollers, not your cup of coffee). You must report all gambling income on Line 21 ("Other Income") of IRS Form 1040. So, if you're a winner, prepare to pay up. If you're not, you're able to write off some of your gambling losses. Every casino will provide tax records called a win/loss statement of your gambling from the previous year around February and March. While you'll have to pay taxes for your winnings, you can deduct the losses. Keeping your own record of each gambling session is best, but win/loss statements are helpful for many gamblers.
The new year brings new things. In 2011, this writer got countless Royal Flushes playing video poker. 2012 brought just a few Royal Flushes, but none with a hand pay. Hand pay is always the goal when playing machines because that usually means we won $1,200 or more. That's a pretty nice score. These scores are usually accompanied by a W2G from the tax man.
Even though the tax deadline isn't until April 15, it's time to prepare. Our email tells us this is the case when, earlier this week, Boyd Gaming sent us the first of many emails reminding us that our 2012 win/loss statements were ready. Unfortunately, we can't just get our gambling losses refunded by the IRS. (THAT would be awesome.) Turbo Tax does a good job of explaining the basics:
Gambling / Taxes / Players Clubs / → All Tags
We're brazen, but there's one guy we don't mess with -- The Tax Man.
There's no avoiding the tax man. Not even in a casino. Gambling winnings are all taxable and so are large comps (i.e., flights and vacations for high rollers, not your cup of coffee). You must report all gambling income on Line 21 ("Other Income") of IRS Form 1040. So, if you're a winner, prepare to pay up.
Every casino will provide tax records called a win/loss statement of your gambling from the previous year around February and March. While you'll have to pay taxes for your winnings, you can deduct the losses. Unfortunately, you can't just deduct your gambling losses alone on your taxes.
Hotel Rooms / Taxes / Shopping / → All Tags
Back in April, we told you that Nevada was going to be increasing the hotel room tax by three percent and guess what: That tax is already in effect, having started on July 1.
The maximum room tax is now 12 percent which is quite a big jump. Although, it's still cheaper than New York City which has now reached 14.25 percent.
Also going up in Las Vegas is the sales tax which increased from 7.75 percent to 8.1 percent, meaning that Rolex you were hoping to buy when you hit it big is going to cost you even more. So make sure you count your winnings correctly.
Thankfully, there are still a lot of sales going on in the retail stores on the Strip where you can can get some good bargains. And you know you can always get some "Believe" merchandise on the cheap.
Yes, the deals abound in Vegas these days. Hello, Trump Las Vegas for $89 a night with a $69 spa credit. Or MGM Grand mid-week for $49 a night. Even Wynn is discounting dangerously close to the $100 a night mark.
But once you've come down from your bargain-hunter's high, remember there are still taxes to be paid. And in Nevada, the room tax is going to increase up to three percent. Currently room tax is at nine percent.
The room tax will start July 1 and is expected to produce revenue of $233 million in the first two years. The decision to increase the room tax was done instead of increasing the state's gambling tax, which was not well-received by casinos. But the room tax was viewed as easier since most guests don't even notice the taxes until check-out.
Or until after they've sobered up enough from their trip to Vegas to check their bank account. Nice.