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Zip Taxes
Zip Taxes, Tax Preparer
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 156
Experience:  CTEC Licensed / Mgmt Experience with H & R Block... Self Employed since 1986 Experienced in all Scheds
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I set a goal about 10 years ago that I wanted to play professional

Customer Question

I set a goal about 10 years ago that I wanted to play professional golf. Over the last 10 years I have worked to build a couple small businesses as well as working on my game. I have never deducted any of the expenses as it related to golf as I was certain that it would be considered a "hobby". In addition, I have never quite understood the line that separates a professional and amatuer. It has been a long 10 years but I am finally at a point that I can step back from running the businesses day to day and play golf fulltime. I have several questions:

At what point can I consider and justify that it is my intent to play golf for a living and thus deduct appropriate expenses?

What would be appropriate expenses? club memberships, green fees, trainers, teachers, travel etc??

Do you have to 1099 trainers, teachers?

Can I recapture significant expenses or somehow benefit from the significant investment I have made over the last 10 years?

How do professional golfers file? LLC? Corp?

Thanks - hoping someone can give me some insight into this topic.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Zip Taxes replied 6 years ago.

Zip Taxes :

Welcome to Just Answers, I will do my best to Answer your Question.

Zip Taxes :

First of all, congratulations on meeting your goal.

Zip Taxes :

Secondly I'm going to respond in it's proper perspective as to when a "Hobby" becomes a "Business"

Zip Taxes :

When you decided to choose professional golf as your career then it's not a hobby, the training, the fees, and all the expenses now become a personal Schedule C deduction from your taxes in which you can go back three years.

Zip Taxes :

You can take the losses for three to five years

Zip Taxes :

You can choose to LLC or S Corp at any time or any type of Corp. as you wish which I would defer you to a Corp. Tax Attorney that can set you up properly.

Zip Taxes :

You can expense your expenses in obtaining a sponsors

Zip Taxes :

So, if you need to amend your taxes to go back three years, you can, the law allows you to do so.

Zip Taxes :

Your desire, and your choice to become pro is what determines your position as a pro and the training it takes to get there.

Zip Taxes :

Thank you.

Customer:

Thx for the info. Just to clarify - I could recapture my expenses for only last three years but in order to do so must go back and amend last three years of taxes. I am also limited to losses for three to five years?

Zip Taxes and 3 other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Zip Taxes replied 6 years ago.
Yes, you can recap the losses up to the past 3 years, which ever you prefer.

As to the 5 years, it's a non-law but a known fact that IRS figures about 5 years to get a business upright.

As a pro golfer, they may not have a litmus test for your occupation so your losses could continue for a longer period of time.

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