Christian Lopez could have possibly made hundreds of thousands of dollars with the sale of Derek Jeter’s 3,000th hit ball but instead the Yankees fan decided to hand the ball over to Jeter and now that generous move could create a hefty tax bill for Lopez with the IRS ready to collect on any gifts handed down by the New York firm.
In place of the ball the team gave Lopez 4 season tickets to the rest of Yankees regular season and playoff games in their President’s box at Yankees stadium, plus some jersey’s, bats, balls and other gifts signed by Jeter, all of which may be considered taxable as gifts by the IRS.
The season tickets alone are valued at $50,000 and could end up costing Lopez up to $14,000 in IRS taxes, a big sum for a college graduate with $150,000 in outstanding student loans who works at Verizon Wireless.
Speaking to ABC News Lopez says of the predictament:
“I’m just waiting for the IRS phone call,” while adding: “I’m not going to let something like the IRS stand in my way from enjoying myself. For right now, I’m going to enjoy everything I can.”
The hefty price tag isn’t stopping the Yankees fan from enjoying his seats while noting that he’ll “cross that bridge when I come to it.”
Some tax experts say that Lopez could beat the IRS if taken to court or audited by claiming gifts as non-taxable.
Perhaps the New York Yankees could just sell him the season tickets for $1 per game. I’m not a tax expert but I would think as it is there business they could pull that off, after all, people do it with $1 vehicles for family members and friends all the time.