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  #16 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 01:38pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by just another ref View Post
Exactly
I'm no accountant, but I'd note that not every game fits that example. Rarely do we drive that far for that little without a mileage stipend to help. A couple of games a year, I may "lose" money.
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  #17 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 01:46pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam View Post
I'm no accountant, but I'd note that not every game fits that example. Rarely do we drive that far for that little without a mileage stipend to help. A couple of games a year, I may "lose" money.
Was not focusing on that particular game, but rather the statement "I'm not in this for the bucks." What I was thinking of was the first year official, who spends $1000 on equipment, mileage, and a trip to camp, then only works a handful of games and his gross income is half that. If he reports a loss, it may or may not be upheld in an audit.
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Last edited by just another ref; Sat Feb 06, 2016 at 01:53pm.
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  #18 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 02:05pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by just another ref View Post
Was not focusing on that particular game, but rather the statement "I'm not in this for the bucks." What I was thinking of was the first year official, who spends $1000 on equipment, mileage, and a trip to camp, then only works a handful of games and his gross income is half that. If he reports a loss, it may or may not be upheld in an audit.
My lay understanding is that it takes a few years of losses before the IRS would change it to a hobby.
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  #19 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 02:07pm
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https://www.irs.gov/uac/Business-or-...for-Deductions

This link is from the IRS regarding business vs. hobby. The major presumption the IRS makes in determining if you have a business or a hobby is whether whether or not you made a profit in at least 3 of the past 5 years including the year you are filing. Basically the way they look at it is that if you perpetually have self-employment losses and try to use those losses to offset income from another source, they are going to tell you to quit using your hobby as a tax break.

The ideal way to handle tax issues related to officiating is to get a ledger. I keep a log of everything on my ledger with detailed information including the dates of expenses incurred and how the expenses were associated with income when applicable (i.e. if I had travel expenses that were not reimbursed, I entered the mileage in the travel section of the ledger with the date and which game I traveled to in what location). I keep track of all of my income as well and I know by the end of the year what to expect if I do receive any 1099s. Regardless, I file based on the information I have kept for myself and think of 1099s as potential reminders if I do happen to forget something.
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 03:17pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoomerSooner View Post
https://www.irs.gov/uac/Business-or-...for-Deductions

This link is from the IRS regarding business vs. hobby. The major presumption the IRS makes in determining if you have a business or a hobby is whether whether or not you made a profit in at least 3 of the past 5 years including the year you are filing. Basically the way they look at it is that if you perpetually have self-employment losses and try to use those losses to offset income from another source, they are going to tell you to quit using your hobby as a tax break.

The ideal way to handle tax issues related to officiating is to get a ledger. I keep a log of everything on my ledger with detailed information including the dates of expenses incurred and how the expenses were associated with income when applicable (i.e. if I had travel expenses that were not reimbursed, I entered the mileage in the travel section of the ledger with the date and which game I traveled to in what location). I keep track of all of my income as well and I know by the end of the year what to expect if I do receive any 1099s. Regardless, I file based on the information I have kept for myself and think of 1099s as potential reminders if I do happen to forget something.
So make a profit, even minimal profit, at least 3 out of 5 years. Should be pretty easy to control your deductions to make that happen.

Note: consult a tax advisor before taking Adam's tax advice.
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  #21 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 04:02pm
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Be *VERY* careful before deciding to switch to hobby/non-profit classification. One aspect that isn't talked about in that linked document that discusses business vs hobby tests is that hobby expenses are deductible on Schedule A, if you itemize. However, they are classified as miscellaneous deductions and therefore only deductible if they and all other miscellaneous deductions in total are in excess of 2% of your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI). If the total isn't in excess of 2% AGI, then you don't get to deduct it.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 04:18pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich View Post
Just got my 1099 from ArbiterPay recently.



I laughed cause I know there are officials out there that were really p'ed off to receive such a thing.

I really do take more pleasure than I should from hearing officials whining about getting a 1099.

And Rev, I claim only sure thing expenses for officiating. I'm not worried about losing any deductions.
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 04:19pm
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Originally Posted by bob jenkins View Post
I have heard or read (but do not know for sure) that some entities are required to report all payments to the IRS, but they only are required to send a 1099 to the taxpayer if >$600. It doesn't matter to me what they do -- I know what I do.
I file the 1099s with the IRS on behalf of many of my Reftown clients. None of them report anything for those making below $600. There may be some, but I haven't seen any.

There are a few who, in very special cases, have to report all income to a government entity. But it isn't the IRS. The ones I'm aware of are related to garnishments for various reasons and it is usually a state level entity.

There are some individuals who are subject to backup withholding. That may mean that person has to get a 1099 no matter how much they make. Maybe that is related to prior tax payment problems. Not sure...I don't have anyone in the ones I file subject to that.
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  #24 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 04:40pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Camron Rust View Post
I file the 1099s with the IRS on behalf of many of my Reftown clients. None of them report anything for those making below $600. There may be some, but I haven't seen any.

There are a few who, in very special cases, have to report all income to a government entity. But it isn't the IRS. The ones I'm aware of are related to garnishments for various reasons and it is usually a state level entity.

There are some individuals who are subject to backup withholding. That may mean that person has to get a 1099 no matter how much they make. Maybe that is related to prior tax payment problems. Not sure...I don't have anyone in the ones I file subject to that.
The IRS, in recent years, has leaned on and 'encouraged' entities with high independent contractor expenses to issue more 1099s. But indeed, the legal requirement is only if any single contractor/vendor gets $600 in total. I think the trend of more 1099's will only grow.

Here, there's one school district that issues 1099s to everyone. I got one 2 years for 1 game. $40.
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  #25 (permalink)  
Old Sat Feb 06, 2016, 10:50pm
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Originally Posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr. View Post
It is not $400 income before expenses but taxable profit after expenses.

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Net income.
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  #26 (permalink)  
Old Sun Feb 07, 2016, 06:27pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark T. DeNucci, Sr. View Post
It is not $400 income before expenses but taxable profit after expenses.

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Originally Posted by Whistles & Stripes View Post
Net income.

If one has a profit of $400 or more on Line 31 of his/her Schedule C for 2015, then that person has to pay SSC taxes. If your figure on Line 31 is a profit it is a taxable profit.

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  #27 (permalink)  
Old Tue Feb 09, 2016, 09:26am
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1 more caveat

If game fee and mileage are on the same check then according to the irs they are both game fee/income. Mileage must be documented and paid separately from fees/wages/salary. I.e. if game fee is $100 and mileage is 100 miles, $50 (easy to do in Nebraska) and your check is for $150, then as far as the irs is concerned that game fee was $150.

Furthermore you can't claim mileage from "home" commuting to work isn't a tax break, but if you can document and substantiate that you have a designated home "office" for your officiating then you can claim mileage.

There is debate about mileage to camps/clinics, unless such camps are required by your employer or your "business"

In other words just be careful. But don't cheat on your taxes. Our avocation requires us to be credible men/women of integrity.
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  #28 (permalink)  
Old Tue Feb 09, 2016, 11:12am
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Originally Posted by Reffing Rev. View Post
Furthermore you can't claim mileage from "home" commuting to work isn't a tax break, but if you can document and substantiate that you have a designated home "office" for your officiating then you can claim mileage.
Not the advice I got from a tax pro. Commuting to work from home is not deductible for W2 employees. No one I know of is W2 for officiating. Independent contractors (what we do) are different, though, and can deduct mileage to and from games.

As always, consult your tax professional.
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old Tue Feb 09, 2016, 11:19am
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https://www.irs.gov/publications/p334/ar01.html
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  #30 (permalink)  
Old Tue Feb 09, 2016, 11:22am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reffing Rev. View Post
1 more caveat

If game fee and mileage are on the same check then according to the irs they are both game fee/income. Mileage must be documented and paid separately from fees/wages/salary. I.e. if game fee is $100 and mileage is 100 miles, $50 (easy to do in Nebraska) and your check is for $150, then as far as the irs is concerned that game fee was $150.

Furthermore you can't claim mileage from "home" commuting to work isn't a tax break, but if you can document and substantiate that you have a designated home "office" for your officiating then you can claim mileage.

There is debate about mileage to camps/clinics, unless such camps are required by your employer or your "business"

In other words just be careful. But don't cheat on your taxes. Our avocation requires us to be credible men/women of integrity.
Additionally, and probably of much more relevance to most officials, mileage from your regular work location to a temporary work location (which almost everywhere we officiate would be unless you're going to the same place so often that it's a regular work location) is deductible, regardless of home office status. The home office thing is essentially the same thing, since it would then be your regular location so travel from home directly to the temp work location would then be deductible.

Here's a handy chart from the IRS to help (not applicable if you work from home):



and the original IRS publication:

https://www.irs.gov/publications/p46...link1000136362
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