Wrestling with Taxes

It’s tax season, so it’s time to start thinking about how you are going to wrestle your taxes into submission this year, or well, file them. As always, Jackson Hewitt has your back. But, that’s not all that we have this year…

This tax season, Jackson Hewitt is a proud sponsor of the upcoming Royal Rumble on Jan. 26. Stop by any Jackson Hewitt Sears location for more information and a special offer only available to Jackson Hewitt customers!

Professional wrestling: Big in every way

Before we get to taxes, did you know that although professional wrestling started out years ago, as long ago as ancient Rome, it has of late become a billion-dollar industry?  Revenue is continually in the billions and the number of professional wrestlers that are multimillionaires cannot be easily counted. Video sales dominate the Billboard charts Recreational Sports DVD sales, with wrestling holding anywhere from 3 to 9 of the top 10 spots every week.

The main catalyst for this tremendous economic engine is the WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment). WWE is a multinational company and has approximately 140 performers who are independent contractors, same as actors or actresses on television dramas, soaps or comedies. Many are the wrestler/entertainers you know and love – if you are one of those millions of people who follow this market. 

Pinning down your taxes

So what does that have to do with taxes?  Simple. Self-employed multimedia professional wrestlers have the same tax issues, considerations and concerns that any self-employed taxpayer does and following are a few tax tips for both as we approach tax season.

Medical premiums can be directly deducted by self –employed persons.  Other medical expenses are still claimed as part of itemized deductions, granted probably a bit larger for the professional wrestler who is participating in the Royal Rumble, or the most recent Smackdown event.

Travel expenses, including automobile mileage, auto costs, repairs, vehicle maintenance and other vehicle expenses are fully deductible if they are related to your income. That wrestler limo might cost a bit more to operate than your work-related vehicle, but the costs are deductible just the same.

Meals and entertainment expenses are deductible including business gifts, with certain limitations. For wrestlers who send flowers to the opponent they put in the hospital, that is the same as the thank you gift you paid for related to your business.

There are many more with the only real rule being that any deductible expense simply be reasonable and customary and related to the ongoing business you are involved with. It’s also a best practice to keep good records and supporting information for any deductions you take.