by ehistoryadmin on August 30, 2014


Irish Jockey’s Income Tax.


In the High Court, Dublin, on Tuesday before Mr Justice Sullivan, Mr. Justice Hauna and Mr. Justice O’Byrne, the adjourned case of Wing, appellant, O Connell, Respondent, Inspector of Taxes, which involved a question of considerable interest to professional jockeys, was heard.

The appellant, Mr. M. Wing, of Gordon House, Newbridge, Co.Kildare, a well-known Irish professional jockey, had been assessed, it appeared, by the Special Commissioners of Inland Revenue, in respect of a present of £400 received by him from the owner of a horse ridden by him which had won the Irish Derby at the Curragh, Co. Kildare, some years ago.

The plaintiff’s case was that the present was a voluntary gift to him, outside of his employment, and that he was not liable to be taxed in respect of it; which the respondent continued that although the payment of the £400 was a voluntary payment, it was a profit or gain arising or according from his vocation as a jockey, and was, consequently, subject to taxation under schedule “D.”

Counsel – Mr. Leonard, K.C., and Mr. Kingsmill Moore (instructed by Messrs. Giltrap and Lambert), for the appellant ; Mr. M’Cann, K.C.; Mr. Bewley, KC., and Mr. Lavery (instructed by Mr.Collins solicitor for the Inland Revenue) for the respondent.

The point in the case was where the present could be reasonably regarded as part of the appellant’s professional earning as a jockey.

This present was accompanied by a letter from the owner thanking the appellant for his successful services in winning the race, and expressing the hope that he would be similarly successful in riding other horses to victory for him in the future.

In support of the appeal it was pointed out that as this present had been received a considerable time after the appellant’s employment in riding the horse had terminated it could not be properly regarded as arising out of or accruing from the exercise of his vocation as a jockey, any more than professional cricketers would be taxable in respect of  “benefit matches” taking place for them, or clergymen, barristers, or doctors receiving presents in recognition of their services.

For the respondent it was submitted the present clearly formed part of the appellant’s income or gains arising from his employment as a professional jockey. It was a common thing for jockeys to receive presents of this kind, which were generally given a week or so after the particular race, and there was always some motive for giving the present.

The Court reserved judgment.


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