Why Are Table Games Taxed Differently Than Slots?

Home » Recent Posts » Why Are Table Games Taxed Differently Than Slots?
Share this on:

Roulette table view from side of the wheel

Players who avail themselves of both slots and table games and who bet high enough know that the rules are different between slots and table games when it comes to tax paperwork on a big win. One player had a fair question:

Why do you have to pay taxes on a slot handpay but not on table game winnings over $1,200?

Michael L.

The difference comes down to the rules set for each – the IRS doesn’t have a consistent requirement between the two types of gaming. Table games don’t solely have a fixed dollar amount threshold like slots do. Instead, a W2G tax reporting document is generated when two rules are met:

  • The win is at least $600
  • The win is at least 300x your bet

That latter rule is a pretty hard thing to accomplish on a table game on its own. Playing Blackjack, for instance, you’re not going to ever see that happen on the main hand wager. It’s possible on the top payouts of certain side bets, but those would be rare.

Roulette, same thing – the payouts cap at 35 to 1, so you’re simply not going to reach that 300x your bet rule on any standard bets on a roulette table.

Craps, you’d have to look towards something like the Fire Bet, which would take all six different point numbers being made – a tall feat, but theoretically possible – to trigger the threshold.

What makes the rules even more complicated is that electronic table games follow the rules for slots, since they’re video machines. So if you’re betting high enough to get a $1,200 win on an electronic table game, regardless of the wager, you’d get a W2G. So keep that in mind if you’re going to play on an electronic version.

This weird frankenmonster of a rule set pops up in other ways too – electronic Keno on a video poker machine will yield a taxable jackpot at $1,200, but playing live Keno in a casino the threshold is slightly higher at $1,500. And playing state lottery Keno will often mean a $600 prize is reported, because it follows the state lottery rules instead.

Would switching slots to follow the table games rule improve things? Well, 300x bonuses aren’t incredibly common, but they’re not particularly rare either, and you could hit $600 and 300x your bet on a $2 wager, which likely would create more IRS reporting scenarios for lower betters while reducing the frequency for higher betters. 

That may not yield better results than what we have now in terms of reducing paperwork, so perhaps raising the jackpot threshold remains the best option.

Have a question? Submit yours here!

Share this on:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Play Online Casinos

Sign Up and get a Deposit Match up to $1,000, plus $25 in Site Credits on the house! Available in MI, NJ, PA & WV. US promotional offers not valid in Ontario.

Use code SWITCH2500 for a 100% deposit match up to $2,500, and 2,500 Reward Credits, with $25+ in wagers placed (MI, NJ, PA & WV).

New sign-ups get $35 Casino Credits + Up to $100 Deposit Match in Casino Credits (w/$5 min dep, 1X PTR)

Sign Up and deposit $10+ to get a Welcome Offer of Site Credits up to $1,000 to Play it Again in MI, NJ, PA & WV based on net loss from your first 24 hours of play. 

Play Social Casinos

Ready to give it a try? Get 10 million coins to play Show Me Vegas Slots with promo code SWITCH!

New players get 60 million coins for signing up! All players will receive 5 million coins free (one time only).

Sign Up and get a Welcome Bonus of 2,000,000 FREE Gold Coins & 2 FREE Sweeps Coins. Get started today!

Sign Up for LuckyLand Slots and get a Welcome Bonus of 7,777 FREE Gold Coins & 10 FREE Sweeps Coins!

Online Game Spotlight
Jinse Dao Dragon Slot Machine

A Different Approach to Collecting Prizes on Reels

88 Drums

Bonus Chasing Game, Especially with Power Bets

Play Online Sportsbooks

Sign Up to get a Bet $5, Get $150 in Bonus Bets if your bet wins!

Use code SWITCH1000 to get your first bet back in Bonus Bets, up to $1,000, if you lose.

​SIGN UP and make a bet of $5+ to get $150 instantly in Bonus Bets!

New Players get a $50 Bonus Bet w/ $5 Deposit Plus No Sweat First Bet Up to $1,000 + All Sport SGP Insurance! New players outside MA also get 20% Match up to $1,000 (25x PTR).

Social Game Spotlight
Lucky Buddha

Multipliers for Multiple Line Hits