WSOP Poker final table tournament winnings are usually very high and can appear to be a significant amount of money to most people. For example, the 2016 winner of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event Qui Nguyen took home winnings of over $8 million. In fact the total amount handed out prize month during the entire 2016 WSOP amounted to a stunning $221,211,336 as there were a number of events that had prize money in excess of 6 figures.
While the figures look impressed, what the players actually see in the end is only a portion of this amount. Substantial tax levies are the prime reason for this. Winnings get further reduced if the player has financial backers, those who invest into the buyer’s stake for a cut of the winnings.
A review of the winnings received by WSOP winners carried out by Russ Fox of Clayton Financial and Tax in Las Vegas gives a clear idea of what the players actually took home. In his report, Fox shows the actual winnings made by the players in this year’s edition of WSOP, one of the most lucrative poker tournaments in 2016. The final amounts mentioned below have been calculated after taking into consideration tax deductions which varies depending on the player’s location.
According to Fox’s analysis Qui Nguyen took home only $4,681,153 losing out $3,324,157 due to tax deduction of 41.51 percent applicable for those residing in Las Vegas, Nevada. Gordon Vayo who came in second would have taken home $2,262,428 out of his total winnings of $4,661,228. Cliff Josephy who finished in third place would be netting a final amount of $1,779,000 of the total $3,453,568 that he won.
Players from overseas countries see variable winnings as per their country’s applicable tax laws. Vojtech Ruzicka of the Czech Republic would be paying a flat 15 percent rate income tax on the winnings of $1,935,288 while Kenny Hallaert of Belgium would be paying no tax since the country doesn’t tax amateur gambling winnings .
The report shows that out of the total of $25,445,388 that was won at the final table of the WSOP Main Event, taxes amounting to around $10,109,760 would need to be paid to the authorities of different regions and countries. The IRS alone would be taking out $8,108,024 of it.
A similar report released by Fox last year showed that Joe McKeehen the winner of the 2015 Main Event would have taken home just $4,297,394 out of the total $7,683,346 won by him. Fox pointed out that McKeehen would need to payout federal tax, state income tax, followed by local township tax. However, the 2016 WSOP main event winners appear to be happy with what they have accomplished and do not have any complaints as of now.