Giving an Int'l D1 seat to spouse?

Old Sep 6, 16, 10:41 am
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Originally Posted by RobertS975 View Post
I am sure that you didn't become a FlyerTalk Posting Legend by bringing up far-out hypotheticals like this!
I wouldn't be so sure.

Originally Posted by northwest_buckeye View Post
Bingo. Gotta get that post count up.
+ million
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Old Sep 6, 16, 10:50 am
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OP and wife board in their assigned seats. Problem solved.

After boarding, ask the FA's if it's OK to swap. They are the only ones who could possibly care; I don't.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 10:53 am
  #33  
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Originally Posted by ATLawyer View Post
The business rule has nothing to do with the IRS. There is zero risk of IRS problems from seat swapping.



This is just not true, no technicality about it. (again, it may be a problem with your company, e.g. personal use of internet during work hours, but it's not a tax/IRS issue)

You know that the IRS actually issues advisory opinions about these sorts of things right? Please do a modest amount of research before running your mouth about things that simply aren't true.
I have dealt with IRS and they know the rules. The IRS will see it no different then if the company bought her a D1 seat. This means the employee would need to pay taxes on that amount. Sorry that you think otherwise, but the IRS has become very strict in regards to this type of thing. They used to not care at all, now they do, and do take actions against both people and companies for this. All the company could claim for travel is the coach fare, the difference between D1 and coach would then be a wage/benefit expense as it's considered to be wages for W2/tax purposes. Think if they issued you a $4k check to fly her, it would be considered part of your taxable wages bY the IRS. Just because they booked it in your name doesn't change the fact she's the one in D1.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 10:53 am
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Welcome to www.flyerBS.com

As others have mentioned, the OPs question is:
"Giving an Int'l D1 seat to spouse?"

I just had a GUC upgrade from SYD-LAX a few months ago. My wife ran out of hers. But during the flight, I started off in D1, took an nap, then midway through the flight, swapped with my wife in C+ so she could take a nap. Then we swapped back again as she was going to watch some more movies.

Never once did I think about swapping, nor did I notice any FA's have an issue with it.

On other flights, that I've been upgraded, I asked if my daughter could have the seat, and they've said: "Certainly". Nearly every upgrade I get, if I'm traveling with my wife or daughters - or even friends, I give them my upgrade. NEVER been an issue. (However, if I see a military service personnel in uniform, that's who I trade seats with - which gets more praise from FA's than any question)

...back to our regularly scheduled soap opera...
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Old Sep 6, 16, 11:13 am
  #35  
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The IRS also wants to know when you get an extra bag of chocolate-covered blueberry-flavored goop from the snack basket. If you take more than two it's TAXABLE INCOME
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Old Sep 6, 16, 11:20 am
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Not going to suggest that the IRS idea isn't possible, but given that this is, you know, Flyertalk, wouldn't we have heard from somebody if there had ever been a case like this before? Wouldn't somebody have posted that they were prosecuted for fraud for switching seats? And because there isn't a thread like that, isn't it exceedingly unlikely that there's any actual risk?
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:08 pm
  #37  
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OP here.

I certainly get what folks are saying. My employer might not like it if i gave the seat to my wife (they're paying for J so i can sleep on the flight, not so my wife can sleep on the flight) and technically they'll be incurring an expense for 'Injera's seat in J' not 'Mrs. Injera's seat in J.'

Could it be against the rules? Yes.
Odds of it getting picked up by my multi billion dollar employer? Probably about as good as me hitting powerball.

Sounds like the vast majority of flight attendants wouldnt mind if my wife took my seat. If they say no, so be it. If they say 'yes, but only if we switch the names on the tickets' then I won't do it. Otherwise i'll take the risk

Can't imagine i'd get much sleep anyhow on a 6 hour flight departing at 7pm anyways. Thanks for the feedback.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:09 pm
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Originally Posted by steveholt View Post
Not going to suggest that the IRS idea isn't possible, but given that this is, you know, Flyertalk, wouldn't we have heard from somebody if there had ever been a case like this before? Wouldn't somebody have posted that they were prosecuted for fraud for switching seats? And because there isn't a thread like that, isn't it exceedingly unlikely that there's any actual risk?
+1
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:13 pm
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Originally Posted by steveholt View Post
Not going to suggest that the IRS idea isn't possible, but given that this is, you know, Flyertalk, wouldn't we have heard from somebody if there had ever been a case like this before? Wouldn't somebody have posted that they were prosecuted for fraud for switching seats? And because there isn't a thread like that, isn't it exceedingly unlikely that there's any actual risk?
I believe we should petition the IRS to set up a Shenanigans Investigation Hotline. After all, if shenanigans DO happen, it should be considered taxable income to the Shenaniganee and the Shenaniganor should be required to report it.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:16 pm
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Originally Posted by RobertS975 View Post
I am sure that you didn't become a FlyerTalk Posting Legend by bringing up far-out hypotheticals like this!
Originally Posted by pvn View Post
The IRS also wants to know when you get an extra bag of chocolate-covered blueberry-flavored goop from the snack basket. If you take more than two it's TAXABLE INCOME
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:20 pm
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Originally Posted by flyerCO View Post
I have dealt with IRS and they know the rules. The IRS will see it no different then if the company bought her a D1 seat. This means the employee would need to pay taxes on that amount. Sorry that you think otherwise, but the IRS has become very strict in regards to this type of thing. They used to not care at all, now they do, and do take actions against both people and companies for this. All the company could claim for travel is the coach fare, the difference between D1 and coach would then be a wage/benefit expense as it's considered to be wages for W2/tax purposes. Think if they issued you a $4k check to fly her, it would be considered part of your taxable wages bY the IRS. Just because they booked it in your name doesn't change the fact she's the one in D1.
what you write is debateable (in court). IRS would have to prove intent on the company's part to benefit the wife, or to benefit the couple with a non-work related gift. Otherwise the transaction simply consists of a gift from husband to wife.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:25 pm
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Originally Posted by injera View Post
OP here.

I certainly get what folks are saying. My employer might not like it if i gave the seat to my wife (they're paying for J so i can sleep on the flight, not so my wife can sleep on the flight) and technically they'll be incurring an expense for 'Injera's seat in J' not 'Mrs. Injera's seat in J.'

Could it be against the rules? Yes.
Odds of it getting picked up by my multi billion dollar employer? Probably about as good as me hitting powerball.
.
You are correct. The company paid for your J ticket to allow you to show up for work well rested and they deduct it as a business expense.
Other than that it is up to you to sleep soundly, or to stay up all night watching movies and kocking down free drinks, or swap seats with your wife.
It is your responsibility to be productive the following day as well.

The IRS problem originates from the consideration that the J seat perhaps is not a business expense, but the company wanted to benefit your wife all along and played an accounting trick. It is up to them to prove that in court.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 12:44 pm
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Originally Posted by jadenus View Post
I believe we should petition the IRS to set up a Shenanigans Investigation Hotline. After all, if shenanigans DO happen, it should be considered taxable income to the Shenaniganee and the Shenaniganor should be required to report it.
I believe you meant "BUsiness Legal Loophole SHenanigans Investigation Tipline." The acronym is much better.
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Old Sep 6, 16, 1:22 pm
  #44  
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I value my job and am an ethical person and have signed the company code of conduct. They pay for BE for a reason. So I am rested. I wouldn't do it (swap seats) even if there was zero chance of getting caught. I value my own integrity. BTW our CEO and his wife were on a fairly recent flight- domestic admittedly. I got the UG to F and he was sat in F too. His wife was way in the back - MD88 for those interested DAY-ATL
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Old Sep 6, 16, 1:47 pm
  #45  
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Originally Posted by GRALISTAIR View Post
I value my job and am an ethical person and have signed the company code of conduct. They pay for BE for a reason. So I am rested. I wouldn't do it (swap seats) even if there was zero chance of getting caught. I value my own integrity. BTW our CEO and his wife were on a fairly recent flight- domestic admittedly. I got the UG to F and he was sat in F too. His wife was way in the back - MD88 for those interested DAY-ATL
This is the point I made way up thread.

OPs employer paid for him to be in BE for a reason - so he could get rest and / or work on the flight - and be ready to work.

If the OP failed to perform at his business meeting his employer would soon find out as the client would likely tell them "hey Jack Fred was tired at the meeting why the heck am I paying you guys to fly in Business class for???"

That's the main risk the OP has. Not from the tax man
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