BIR: OnlyFans earnings even if illegal is taxable

In an article entitled "Earning through OnlyFans? BIR says that's taxable", the GMA News Online reported: "Content creators earning on subscription service OnlyFans are also covered by a Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) circular reminding online content creators such as YouTubers and social media influencers of their tax responsibility." (Cordero, Ted. Aug. 27, 2021. GMA News Online. Earning through OnlyFans? BIR says that's taxable. Last accessed: August 27, 2021, 7:25 PM)

When asked if the BIR is also looking into income of sex workers selling videos on popular platforms like OnlyFans, Bureau  Internal Revenue Deputy Commissioner for Legal Group Marissa Cabreros said, “May I refer you to RMC 97-2021.” Recently, in a press release, the Bureau of Internal Revenue said that it will start cracking down on social media influencers (SMIs) who avoid the payment of taxes. Through Revenue Memorandum Circular No. 97-2021, BIR launched an all-out investigation against monetized SMIs or vloggers who do not pay taxes from their huge income.

Cabreros also told tax expert Mon Abrea in a recent online interview that even illegal sources of funds are covered by taxes, to which, Filipino sex workers who sell their videos on platforms like OnlyFans are included.

OnlyFans is a content subscription service based in London. Content creators can earn money from users who subscribe to their content—the "fans". It allows content creators to receive funding directly from their fans on a monthly basis as well as one-time tips and the pay-per-view feature.[1]

Profits generated from illegal sources of funds are subject to income tax laws. As used in our income tax law, "income" refers to the flow of wealth.[2] The source of an income is the property, activity or service that produced the income. For the source of income to be considered as coming from the Philippines, it is sufficient that the income is derived from activity within the Philippines.[3] However, for income to be taxable, there must be a gain realized or received by the taxpayer, which is not excluded by law or treaty from taxation.[4] 


[2] Madrigal and Paternol v. Rafferty and Concepcion, 38 Phil. 414 (1918).

[3] CIR v. Air India, G.R. No. 72443, January 29, 1988.

[4] G.R. No. 197590, November 24, 2014.