Christian Lopez, the fan who caught the home run ball that was Derek Jeter’s 3,000 career hit, may have to pay taxes on the tickets, merchandise and other gifts he has received from the New York Yankees and other businesses. All of that will likely be considered taxable income to Lopez.
Now Miller High Life says it will pay any of the taxes Miller may owe. From CNBC:
“Miller High Life believes you should be rewarded for doing the right thing, not penalized,” said Miller High Life brand manager Brendan Noonan. “We want to recognize Christian Lopez, and in turn everyone like him, for doing the common sense thing and help him continue to live the High Life.”
The brand, which does roughly $500 million in annual sales in the US according to Beverage Spectrum, has also offered to throw a party for Lopez with free beer for him and his “legal-drinking-age friends.”
Of course, the tax payment by Miller will also be considered taxable income to Lopez. What usually happens in situations like this is that they payer will “gross up” the payment to account for the tax hit caused by the payment.