<
>

Shot to cost fan $22K in taxes

1/27/2013 - NBA LeBron James Miami Heat + more

With a half-court hook shot, Michael Drysch has gone from an average computer technician in the Midwest to a viral Internet sensation.

The 50-year-old from McHenry, Ill., swished a shot Friday night at the Miami Heat game as part of a promotion with lip balm brand Carmex and the LeBron James Family Foundation. He won $75,000 for himself and the Boys & Girls Club of America.

Drysch got tackled by James after the shot went in, but the government also will tackle his $75,000 prize.

"A lot of people don't realize: You don't win what you win," said Robert Raiola, an accountant with FMRTL in Cranford, N.J., whose clients include athletes.

It's not something Drysch was unaware of. When asked Friday night on NBA TV what he would do with the money, Drysch responded, "Give the government half."

Well, at least it won't be that much.

Drysch's prize is a lump sum based on that $75,000 number, but IRS regulations stipulate that 25 percent of the prize must be withheld for federal income tax.

That leaves Drysch with a check of $56,250.

Then consider the fact that he is a resident of Illinois, which will take out a 5 percent state tax on the prize, regardless of income.

His winnings now are $52,770.

A representative for Carmex confirmed the basic accounting.

Whether Drysch will owe any more in tax will depend on how much he earns in 2013.