The IRS Wants to Know About Your Fantasy-Sports Winnings

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Play DraftKings or FanDuel? The IRS Wants to Know About Your Winnings

Did you make money on fantasy-sports sites? That's taxable, and prize money of more than $600 will be reported to Uncle Sam.


Are my DraftKings and FanDuel fantasy-sports winnings taxable? Where would I need to report it?

DraftKings and FanDuel, the two leading sites in the burgeoning daily fantasy sports industry in which folks compete for cash prizes by selecting lineups of players performing in that day's real-life games, plan to pay out more than $1 billion in prize money in 2015. The IRS expects its share.

Quiz: Is It Taxable?

Fantasy-sports winnings of any size are considered taxable income, and if you have a net profit of more than $600 for the year, DraftKings and FanDuel—and other fantasy-sports sites or organizers—must issue a 1099-MISC tax form to both you and the IRS. “Net profit” is calculated as prizes won minus entry fees, plus bonuses; it’s not based on your withdrawals. When your net profits top $600, the site may send you a prompt to complete an electronic W-9 form to provide your Social Security number for IRS reporting.

You report fantasy-sports winnings as “other income” on line 21 of your Form 1040. “If you received a 1099, that number had better show up on your tax return because the IRS will check for it,” says Greg Rosica, a tax partner at EY and contributing author of the EY Tax Guide.

If your winnings are paid through PayPal, you may also get a Form 1099-K if you receive more than $20,000 in payments or have more than 200 transactions for the year. Sometimes a Form 1099-K includes net profit that is also reported on a Form 1099-MISC from a fantasy-sports site. “Make sure you do not double count that income,” says Donald Rosenberg, an enrolled agent in Yorktown Heights, N.Y.

See Also: 7 Smart Year-End Tax Moves for 2015

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