Are You Ready for Some Football Tax Tips?

Tax Tips Football fans at home watching, cheering. Sports game on television.

The biggest game of the year is almost here! That’s right, we’re talking about Super Bowl LIII Just as the new tax season is beginning to ramp up, football players are also kicking into high gear as their teams compete for a chance to make it to the championship game.

In celebration of the NFL Championships and the beginning of tax season, we’ve compiled some fun facts and useful tax tips for football players and fans alike.

Filing as an Athlete

Even professional athletes are regular taxpayers like us! Those who live in states that don’t impose income taxes (such as Florida, Nevada, Texas, and Washington) don’t have their income taxed at the state level, however, they may be taxed on any income earned while playing an away game in an applicable state.

Filing as a Super Fan

You don’t have to be an athlete to receive deductions related to the Super Bowl or other sporting events! If you’re throwing a Super Bowl party for your workplace or are lucky enough to travel to the game this year, here’s what you need to know in terms of tax implications and potential deductions.

If you’re an employer who is throwing a Super Bowl party for the benefit of your employees, you can fully deduct the cost of the party, any meals and entertainment provided. Under tax reform, there are some changes to entertainment expenses for business associates. Starting with the 2018 tax year (taxes you file in n 2019), expenses for entertaining clients, prospects, or business associates will no longer be tax deductible under the new tax reform law. Examples of non-deductible entertainment expenses are events like sports games, shows, and concerts.

If you take your business associates to the Super Bowl this year, you can still deduct their meals at 50% as long as the costs of the meals are separate from the costs of the Super Bowl tickets or any other entertainment event you attend during the super bowl.

If you’re throwing a Super Bowl party for friends rather than employees, unfortunately, the expenses you incur will not be tax deductible. However, you can still save money on your football-related festivities by buying food in bulk, preparing your own meals and making some DIY decorations.

Attending the Super Bowl

In 2018, football fans spent an estimated average $3,000-$6,000 in order to attend the big game. Whether you’re in-state or out of state and planning to go to the game this year, consider the tax implications and deductions when participating in sports-related bets on champions or accepting sponsored giveaways.

At tax-time, TurboTax will ask you simple questions about you and give you the tax deductions and credits you’re eligible for based on your entries. If you have questions, you can connect live via one-way video to a TurboTax Live CPA or Enrolled Agent to get your tax questions answered. A TurboTax Live CPA or Enrolled Agent can also review, sign, and file your tax return.  TurboTax Live CPAs and Enrolled Agents are also available in Spanish.

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