Tax tip: What golf expenses are deductible?

Golfers often wonder what they can claim as business expenses. What do the tax rules say?

‘The rules are very complicated, and there is usually a limit on how much you can deduct,” explains Chartered Accountant Phil Byrne, a Partner with Newton & Co. in Manotick, Ontario.

“Business owners or commissioned salespeople can deduct 50 per cent of the lunch and drinks as client entertainment, but the green fee is not deductible. Interestingly, if you take clients to a hockey game, you can deduct 50 per cent of not only the dinner and drinks but the tickets too – whereas the cost of the golf game is not deductible.”

If you donate a gift to a charity golf tournament, Byrne says you should donate something directly related to your business because then your gift will be 100 per cent deductible. “For example, if a stereo store donates a TV, it can deduct 100 per cent of the cost, but if it donates a case of wine, it can only deduct 50 per cent.”

“If you play in a charity golf tournament, you will receive a receipt for your donation and, although this receipt is deductible, it should only include the amount of the actual donation, not any other items received as parof the fee you paid (such as a golf shirt). You cannot deduct the cost of the cart or round of golf because it is considered to be personal recreation, but you can deduct half of the meal cost,” advises Byrne.

For further information about taxes, contact a Chartered Accountant.

Brought to you by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario