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Six Tips on Gambling Income and Losses

Posted by: Zaher Fallahi
Posted On: Aug 08, 2013

Whether you roll the dice, play cards or bet on the ponies, all your winnings are taxable. The IRS offers these six tax tips for the casual gambler.

 

1. Gambling income includes winnings from lotteries, raffles, horse races and casinos. It also includes cash and the fair market value of prizes you receive, such as cars and trips.

 

2. If you win, you may receive a Form W-2G, Certain Gambling Winnings, from the payer. The form reports the amount of your winnings to you and the IRS. The payer issues the form depending on the type of gambling, the amount of winnings, and other factors. You’ll also receive a Form W-2G if the payer withholds federal income tax from your winnings.

 

3. You must report all your gambling winnings as income on your federal income tax return. This is true even if you do not receive a Form W-2G.

 

4. If you’re a casual gambler, report your winnings on the “Other Income” line of your Form 1040, U. S. Individual Income Tax Return.

 

5. You may deduct your gambling losses on Schedule A, Itemized Deductions. The deduction is limited to the amount of your winnings. You must report your winnings as income and claim your allowable losses separately. You cannot reduce your winnings by your losses and report the difference.

 

6. You must keep accurate records of your gambling activity. This includes items such as receipts, tickets or other documentation. You should also keep a diary or similar record of your activity. Your records should show your winnings separately from your losses.

 

For assistance with any tax matters, including the IRS representation and disclosing your unreported foreign bank accounts, you may contact Zaher Fallahi, Tax Attorney, CPA, at (310) 719-1040 (Los Angeles) or (714) 546-4272 (Orange County), or e-mail to [email protected]

Helpful Tax Tips if you’re moving this summer

posted Aug 7, 2013, 11:20 PM by Zaher Fallahi

If you make a work-related move this summer, you may be able to deduct the costs of the move. This may apply if you move to start a new job or to work at the same job in a new job location. The IRS offers the following tips on moving expenses you may be able to deduct on your tax return.

 

In order to deduct moving expenses, you must meet these three requirements:

 

1. Your move closely relates to the start of work.  Generally, you can consider moving expenses within one year of the date you first report to work at a new job location. Additional rules apply to this requirement.

 

2. You meet the distance test.  Your new main job location must be at least 50 miles farther from your former home than your previous main job location was. For example, if your old main job location was three miles from your former home, your new main job location must be at least 53 miles from that former home.

 

3. You meet the time test.  After you move, you must work full time at your new job location for at least 39 weeks during the first year. Self-employed individuals must meet this test and also work full time for a total of at least 78 weeks during the first 24 months upon arriving in the general area of their new job location. If your income tax return is due before you have satisfied this requirement, you can still deduct your allowable moving expenses if you expect to meet the time test. See Publication 521, Moving Expenses, for more information about these rules.

 

If you can claim this deduction, here are a few more tips from the IRS:

 

Travel.  You can deduct transportation and lodging expenses for yourself and household members while moving from your former home to your new home. You cannot deduct the cost of meals during the travel.

 

Household goods.  You can deduct the cost of packing, crating and transporting your household goods and personal property. You may be able to include the cost of storing and insuring these items while in transit.

 

Utilities.  You can deduct the costs of connecting or disconnecting utilities.

 

Nondeductible expenses.  You cannot deduct as moving expenses any part of the purchase price of your new home, the costs of buying or selling a home, or the cost of entering into or breaking a lease. See Publication 521 for a complete list.

 

Reimbursed expenses.  If your employer reimburses you for the costs of a move for which you took a deduction, you may have to include the reimbursement as income on your tax return.

Update your address.  When you move, be sure to update your address with the IRS and the U.S. Postal Service to ensure you receive mail from the IRS. File Form 8822, Change of Address, to notify the IRS.

 

Tax form to file.  To figure the amount of your deduction for moving expenses, use Form 3903, Moving Expenses.

 

For assistance with any tax matters, including the IRS representation and disclosing your unreported foreign bank accounts, you may contact Zaher Fallahi, Tax Attorney, CPA, at (310) 719-1040 (Los Angeles) or (714) 546-4272 (Orange County), or e-mail to [email protected]