Local Teacher Receives Bill From IRS After Raising Money For Families Fighting Through COVID

Local Teacher Receives Bill From IRS After Raising Money For Families Fighting Through COVID

Louis Goffinet spent his time during the pandemic helping families make ends meet. A Mansfield Center man found himself with a staggering IRS bill for more than $16,000.

“We’d go out and grocery shop for families. On weekends, we were there in Walmart for hours at a time shopping for multiple families,” Goffinet. More than $16,000 is how much his purposeful acts of kindness cost him. He told Channel 3 he recorded his spending and every penny went towards relief for families financially affected by COVID.

“Those fundraisers raised about $41,000 through Facebook and now I’m being subject to, I believe, income tax,” Goffinet said. Tax expert Sara Spodick of Quinnipiac University believes this story is about money paid out to a person and doesn’t end there. Per law, Facebook is required to send a 1099K.

Donations from people made Goffinet’s work possible. Sometimes, he would also help people with their bills.

Initially, Goffinet used an online software program to file. With a tax professional’s help, Spodick says it’s likely the local teacher may see a happy ending. “If there’s an offset to that kind of income, meaning how he spent it on groceries and gifts he’s given to [families], then he can do that,” Spodick said.

Channel 3 learned tax professionals are interested in help sort this case for Goffinet, and if he does have to pay anything, three donors are willing to pay the bill in its entirety. “I really found as I’m reflecting on the whole process that it’s really changed me,” Goffinet said. “Bottom line, you’re not expecting a tax bill, right? Bottom line, based on the facts and things I’ve seen, I don’t expect a tax bill,” Spodick said.

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