Saturday, 08. March 2014 - 21:03
09. 06. 12. - 09:00
A Big Brother winner has been told by judges that he must pat income tax on his 1 million GBP winnings because appearing on the show qualified as work.
Sascha Sirti - who won the German version of the show in 2005 - had claimed that his winnings should be treated like a Lottery windfall.
But Germany's Federal Tax Court in Munich has ruled that his appearance on the show could not be categorised as a game or a lucky break and rejected his appeal against his local tax office.
Judges said that because he allowed himself to be filmed, interviewed and agreed to perform, the show qualified as paid employment.
"He had to allow himself to be filmed and listened to during his time there, and after being selected, had to take part in competitions with other candidates," said the ruling.
But Sirtl’s lawyer, Burkhard Binneweis warned the ruling could have a major impact other reality shows – like The Voice, X Factor and Top Model – where contestants are filmed as they prepare for their performances
"This is going to cause many shows and a many previous winners a lot of trouble," said one expert.
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