Good question, isn’t it? When playing for fun and not getting huge wins, you usually don’t ask yourself this question. But when you get lucky and hit a huge jackpot on either slot machines or live dealer games, it immediately comes to mind: do I have to pay taxes on my winnings?
In order to help you, we will answer the most frequent questions players usually have regarding online gambling winnings taxation. To make things easier, we will take France as an example in our questions. If you are looking for answers that are specific to your country of residence, we highly recommend you to check its legislation. Let’s begin!
Do I have to pay taxes on my online casino winnings in France?
We all know that the French tax system is sometimes hard to comprehend and comes with a multitude of forms to fill. We will make things simple for you. First of all, it does not matter whether you play on a foreign or on an ARJEL regulated online casino.
What you should know is that the winnings you make on games of chance are not submitted to the French income tax. Why? Because these winnings are considered as extraordinary. You should also know that if you won a big amount of money, you may have to pay taxes on the new value of your personal assets, and on the investments you made with this money.
Finally, you should also know that you will have to pay taxes on your winnings of you are considered as a professional player.
When do I get considered as a « professional gambler »?
The French official texts are still kind of blurry about this matter. Basically, it says that regular earnings are to be taxed, as you are considered to be a professional player. If gambling is your main source of income, and you make a big profit off of it, you are considered as a professional gambler, whether you want it or not.
Of course, it is easy to recognise a professional poker, bridge or horse racing player / gambler. When it comes to online casino, things can get a bit harder. If you have any doubt about this subject, we advise you to consult a tax specialist.
ARJEL vs foreign based online casinos
It is easy for the French tax system to track winnings on ARJEL regulated casinos. ARJEL stands for Autorité de Régulation des Jeux en Ligne. It is the French authority that delivers gaming licences to the gambling actors. It also tracks the winnings on these websites.
When it comes to foreign based online casinos, they have no visibility at all. The only way they can apply taxes on these winnings is when the player reports its gains. Small and occasional winnings will stay off the radar. On the other hand, frequent and big amounts of money coming from a foreign country on your French bank account can be reported to the tax office in regard to the laws against money laundering and terrorism.
If you win big amounts of money on a regular basis, we really advice you to report your winnings when doing your tax declaration.