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Always Have a 'Losing' Record for Next Year's Taxes

21 April 2002

CALIFORNIA -- As reported by the Desert Sun: `` ...If you want all that time spent in front of the slots or perched at the tables to earn something beyond empty pockets and a free buffet, the action you take now will save money next tax season.

``The taxes on any big winnings or even little ones can be lowered by keeping track of losses.

``...Record all the money you spent in pursuit of the payoff.

```(Gamblers) need to keep track of every dime they spend … one way or another,' said Richard Osborne, a Palm Desert accountant. `If you don't have any record of that money you put into a slot machine you don't have any way of proving you put that money in.'

``There are a number of ways to document your losses. One way is to withdraw your gambling cash from a casino ATM and hang onto the receipt. If you want to save a buck, or three, by avoiding ATM fees on the casino floor, write a check at the cash cage. If you're a member of a slot club, some casinos will provide you with a statement detailing your wins and losses over time.

``If you want more detailed advice on the extent to which gambling losses can be deducted, ask a certified public accountant or a financial planner. If you start keeping track now, you'll get credit at the buffet line and from the tax man for your 2002 gambling..."

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