Olympic swimming phenom Missy Franklin, 17, already owes about $14,000 in taxes. The tax isn’t on the medals themselves: you only have to pay $2 in tax on a bronze medal, for example. It’s the money that comes with the medals.
I didn’t even know the athletes got money with their medals.
Turns out that there’s cold, hard cash that accompanies each medal: $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver, and $10,000 for bronze.
This is seriously making me think that I should take up skeet shooting or something. That’s probably a good sport to start when you’re 39, right? At least better than hurdling or something.
The US is one of a handful of nations that taxes prize money overseas, reports The Weekly Standard. Gold medalists will owe $8,986; silver medalists will owe $5,385; bronze medalists will owe $3,502.
As of this writing, swimmer Missy Franklin—who’s a high school student—is already on the hook for almost $14,000. By the time the Games are over, her tab could be as high as $30,000.
Florida Senator Mark Rubio has introduced a bill that would make Olympic prize money tax exempt, but that’s unlikely to help Missy out this year.
Of course, Missy, who is still in high school, could choose to decline the prize money to placate the NCAA. Under NCAA rules defining amateur status, athletes entering Division I colleges cannot accept prize money above the actual cost to participate in the event.
(Photo credit: YouTube)
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