I know we have heard this crazy story that winning olympians have to pay taxes on a reward given to them supposedly by the international olympics for winning. However, this is not true. The olympics does not give out cash rewards for winning. Being an ameteur event that might defeat the purpose. Anyway, this doesn't stop countries from paying rewards to their winning olympians. Where does this money come from in the US? It comes from the US olympic committee. Most of the funding for the organization comes from private donations. These rewards are not required by the olympics and are a part of the incentive programs offered to athletes who win in the olympics. In other words the olypics only gives out the medals for winning. On top of this some winning olympians may receive endorsements after their wins by for profit companies. All of this money is considered income by the government and is taxable. Though just winning 9 grand for a gold does not put you in the range of paying taxes in the US. Without other income you would be considered to be maing too little by the IRS to pay taxes, and would not need to file tax returns on that money. Since the money is a one time award you would also be eligible for welfare programs in all except for the month you received the award, though I doubt many people who are olympic athletes are not making money in other ways. One must also note that this 9k is also subject to deductions based on expenses an athlete would incur in training and travel for the olympics, and it is highly unlikely that they couldn't file deductions that would make the entire sum tax free based on US tax code. It also should be noted that the US does spend a large amount of tax money on training facilities for olympians and programs that do help them in their goals, but this prize money does seem to come from private donations to the non-profit committee. So since this is not a reward from the olympics, and would be considered income based on US tax regulations it only seems fair that the olympians pay money on their winnings and income based on their sport as any athlete in the US does. no one is saying the winners of the world series, NBA finals, or superbowl should be exempt from paying taxes on their income, along with the many other sports that offer cash awards for their athletes in competition. So yes, as long as we tax victorious athletes for their jobs as athletes, and the income they mae being a part of the american financial system which offers up what is often insane amounts of money for it's victorious athletes, it only seems fair that olympic athletes also pay taxes on their US winning which they would not get if they were not in the US. If you wish to read more on this you can start in these places and go on: snopes.com: U.S. Gold Medal Winners Pay $9,000 in Taxes? United States Olympic Committee - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia They are referenced and allow you to move on to more detailed information as you wish. I added this to bring a little truth to a argument that seems full of bullshit and to start a topic that actually addresses the real issues of olympic and other athletes who pay taxes on their jobs and income here in the US.