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DODGING THE IRS

by Jean Scott.

Jean Scott is the author of the best-selling book "The Frugal Gambler," a casino guide for thrifty low rollers, plus the sequel, "More Frugal Gambling." She has also written " Tax Help for Gamblers ," a practical guide to help gamblers cope with the complex regulations of the IRS. Her most recent book, " Frugal Video Poker," is a complete how-to guide for video poker players at all levels, from beginners to the experienced, and it is the perfect companion to the " Frugal Video Poker software program." A helpful companion to that book is " The Frugal Video Poker Scouting Guide." Jeans books and software are available at a 10 percent discount in our BJI Store.

Editorís Note: The tax filing season is, unfortunately, here. If you are like me, you dread Ďdoing your taxes." The worst part is making sure all my gambling winnings and losses were recorded correctly on my tax forms and I had the proper back-up data to support my deductions in case I got audited (i.e., I maintained a written log of all my gambling sessions). Fortunately for me, Iíve been following Jeanís advice in her book, " Tax Help for Gamblers," and this has made the task less onerous. If you are a gambler and youíve had some big wins in the casinos, I strongly encourage you to consider getting and reading Jeanís book so you donít run astray of the IRS. You will be glad you did.

 

Most gamblers have heard by now that the IRS requires that you report all of your gambling activities but many, unfortunately, mistakenly believe that you can stay "under the IRS radar" if you never receive any paperwork from them (like a W-2G or 1099). However, this is becoming more difficult, as many "undercover" gamblers have been finding out (sometimes the hard way via an IRS audit).

Thereís more government paperwork required from casinos than just W-2Gs and 1099s. Casinos are required to do other types of reporting to the government to fulfill new anti-money-laundering rules. Some players, for example, think (hope?) that if they stay under the now-famous $10,000 limit for cash transactions, theyíre safe. However, casinos have special requirements that trigger reports at lower amounts.

From Tax Help for Gamblers, my co-author, Marissa, warns:

"In this post-9/11 era, we must all be aware of the USA Patriot Act. The $10,000 that Jean just referred to is not...

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