Are Casino Winnings Taxable?

Living a life in the 21st century is taxable in just about every way. Many people therefore go to casinos to make some extra money that they do not have to declare to the tax man. However, there is a thin line between when you need to declare your winnings and when you don’t. Where is the line and how do we know when we need to declare winnings?

Non-taxable Casino Wins

The good news is that the average Joe on the street that goes to the casino to have a little bit of part time fun every now and again, does not need to worry about declaring their winnings. If your winnings are of the nature that ’You win some, you lose some’ and you are not determined to win then you do not need to declare anything.

But we all go to the casino in hopes of the ‘You win some’ part of that age old maxim. The lines are not quite clear yet. To make it very easy to understand, you can say that if you are not making a profit on purpose, then you are in the clear. So, you go to the casino in the hope of the win and then you do. That money is not taxable and you do not have to worry about declaring it.

Taxable Casino Wins

The moment that you start to chase the win, that is where the taxable income comes in. If you are going to the casino to win. It has become a form of an income for you. When your winnings at the casino forms part of you monthly income and you are reliant on those winnings, that is when you need to start declaring them.

In the same token then, people that are professional poker – or any casino game really – players has to declare their winnings. When going to the casino has become your job – and not as someone that works there – then you need to declare it. The money that you make forms part of the monthly money that you have in your bank account. Monthly, living money is considered a taxable income.

National Lottery

As you can imagine then, the national lottery is considered a capital income and no one needs to pay any tax on it. It is not as if you have a monthly lottery expenditure and then make thousands on the lottery, guaranteed every month. Winnings on the lottery are random and are not guaranteed, therefore it does not form part of your monthly income and cannot be taxed.

Prizes and Tax

You do not have to declare any money or prizes that you win for any competition that you may have entered. They are tax free and all yours. When you do however get any prizes or additional renumeration through your work – your job that gives you a salary – you have to declare it. It is considered as part of your monthly gross income and must be taxed. Even if it was completely unexpected or a prize that you got – for example – for best employee.