SCHUMER: WITH PASSAGE OF BIPARTISAN LEGISLATION, TEAM USA WINNERS NO LONGER HAVE TO PAY A VICTORY TAX; SENATOR ANNOUNCES PASSAGE OF BILL THAT WILL FINALLY BLOCK IRS FROM TAXING OLYMPIC MEDALS; BILL NOW HEADS TO PRESIDENT’S DESK FOR FINAL SIGNATURE
Schumer Bill Exempts US Olympic And Paralympic Athletes From Paying Taxes On Medals And Prize Money From The Olympic Games In Rio & In the Future
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced passage of bipartisan legislation that will finally prevent the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) from taxing Olympic and Paralympic athletes on medals or other prizes awarded to them in Rio and in future Olympic and Paralympic games. Earlier this year, Schumer explained how the US should not tax the winnings of medalists who work hard year-round and volunteered to represent their country on the world’s stage. Schumer argued that the U.S. tax system should recognize the sacrifices made by our Olympic and Paralympic athletes. The USA Olympians and Paralympians Act (H.R. 5946), companion legislation to the Senate bill Senators Schumer and Thune (R-S.D.) introduced earlier this year, will exempt Team USA athletes with an adjusted gross income of $1 million or less from being taxed on medals or prize money received from the United States Olympic Committee on account of prizes awarded to them during the Olympic or Paralympic Games. Schumer said that many countries subsidize their athletes; the least we can do is make sure our athletes don’t get hit with a tax bill for winning a medal. Now that the legislation has been passed by the Senate and the House, it heads to the President’s desk for signature.
“Now that Congress has passed this legislation, our Olympic and Paralympic athletes can continue to break world records without worrying about breaking the bank,” said Senator Schumer. “After a hard fought victory, this legislation will finally exempt our Team USA winners from tax penalties and I look forward to President Obama signing it into law.”
According to a 2014 report by NBC News, the U.S. Olympic Committee awards cash prizes to medal winners when they place in Olympic events: $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver and $10,000 for bronze. However, because the money is considered “earned income abroad,” the monetary value of the Olympic medal is therefore subject to federal taxation.
Earlier this year, Schumer introduced alongside Senator John Thune (R-SD) and successfully helped pass a bipartisan bill in the Senate, called the United States Appreciation for Olympians and Paralympians (USA Olympians and Paralympians) Act. This month, both the House and Senate passed companion legislation (H.R. 5946) to this Senate bill.
The legislation will allow U.S. Olympians and Paralympians to be exclude the value of medals from their taxable income, as well as prizes awarded through the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), which pays monetary awards to U.S. medal-winning athletes at the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Schumer said the bill will not affect taxes on any potential endorsement or sponsorship income earned by Olympic athletes.
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