Everywhere you look in Ohio right now there are advertisements screaming your name, you can finally legally bet on sports in Ohio!
Hollywood, MGM, Caesars, Hard Rock, Draft Kings, Hot Wings, Web Dings, Fan Duel, Barstool, Five Tool, You’re Cool…if you can make up a name, then you can probably place a wager.
Would you believe there are six different physical outlets that allow you to place a wager in Ohio now?
According to my good friends at Columbus Business First, 32 states and Washington DC currently offer live legal sports betting. Much like Ohio’s reticent approach to legalizing forms of marijuana use, the go-live of legalized gambling was highly anticipated yet still late to the game.
Commercials on every channel, but none more than NFL Sundays. Signage all over town, every bus stop bench, even large freeway billboards. You can’t hide from it. It almost arrived in time for Ohio State’s New Year’s Eve appearance in this year’s CFP and is certainly readily available for this weekend’s Super Bowl. And believe me when I say the taxing authorities are just as excited about all of you honest hardworking gamblers!
Fortunately, I am terrible at betting on sports, particularly ones that involve humans. Therefore, I like to limit my betting to Happy Hour Keno, Squares Pools in March, and thoroughbreds every May and June. That puts my annual gambling budget somewhere between $142 and $276. As a result, my losses are pretty limited. No one is happier about that than my wife since we’ve all heard the story of the husband hiding the gambling habit from the wife, only to be uncovered at the “untimeliest” of times…is that a word?
What does that mean for your personal income tax filing next April? Naturally, “avid” gamblers like myself report 100% of my “excessive” annual winnings to the IRS. And if you’re as OCD as me, you have that nightstand diary that details every gambling loss you’ll find in my annual itemized deductions. So really, what do I have to worry about? Nothing. What do you have to worry about? Let’s start with married filing separately once next year’s Draft Kings 1099 shows up in the mail so your spouse doesn’t see where that extra $25k came from that you blew on this year’s golf trip to Oregon.
Actually, I have an even better question, what does that mean for you bookies out there? Don’t answer that…I’ve got the over on Sunday’s National Anthem, don’t let me down, Chris Stapleton!