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Sun, 26 Jun 2011

Is your business a "hobby" or a real business as per IRS

IRS(Internal Revenue Service) , has certain criterias which have to be met in order for your business to qualify as a true business(with profit motives) or else it can be classified as a hobby , leading to fines.
As per the IRS section 183(d) of IRS the following applies

Presumption that Activity is Engaged in for Profit

IRC 183(d) provides a presumption that an activity is engaged in for profit if the activity is profitable for 3 years of a consecutive 5 year period or 2 years of a consecutive 7 year period for activities that consist of breeding, showing, training, or racing horses.

This presumption rule applies only after an activity incurs a third profitable (or second) profitable year within a 5 year (or 7 year) presumption period that begins with the first profitable year.

Note: Treasury Regulation 1.183-1(c) has not been updated to reflect the 1986 amendment increasing the number of profit years required from two to three out of five years for activities other than horse racing, breeding or showing).

Example 1 . A taxpayer has the following profits and losses with a car racing activity (5 year presumption period):

Example 1 profits and losses
Tax Year Gain or (Loss)




The first 5 year presumption period begins with the first profit year of 2001, but the benefit of the presumption does not begin until the third profit year of 2004. The presumption is not available for 2001 through 2003 because it does not apply until the third profit year. The presumption is available during the first presumption period only in 2004 and 2005. The second five year presumption period begins with the 2003 profit year and runs through 2007. The presumption applies to the third profit year of 2006 and will be of benefit to the taxpayer for 2006 and 2007.

If the taxpayer meets the presumption rule, the Service can still argue that the activity is not engaged in for profit; however, the burden of proving that the activity is not engaged in for profit shifts to the Service. In addition, examiners cannot use IRC 183(d) as the sole basis for disallowing losses under IRC 183 even if it is shown that the taxpayer has not met the presumption rule.

Examiners should be alert for situations where the taxpayer may have manipulated income and or expenses to meet the presumption rule determination.

posted at: 18:55 | category: /business | permanent link to this entry | Donate via Bitcoin