Colorado Springs, CO (PRWEB) December 31, 2012
Charitable contributions must be made to qualified charities and taxpayers must maintain proof in most cases. Typically any organization that has received a tax exempt status is a qualified charity, yet churches and other religious organizations might be exempt from this IRS requirement. Organizations and foundations which exist to promote education, science, literary works, prevention of animal cruelty, etc. are considered charities as well.
At times it is easier to consider who is not a qualified charity- social and sport clubs, labor unions, chambers of commerce, groups ran for personal profit, lobbyists, HOAs, individuals and political groups, among others. In addition, the value of a taxpayer’s time, services and blood, and the cost of raffle, bingo or lottery tickets are not considered deductible charitable donations. These are specifically prohibited in IRS publications.
Taxpayers cannot earmark the donation either. For example, a taxpayer's son goes on a charitable trip with a local church. If the donated money is earmarked specifically for the son’s expenses that contribution is not tax deductible. But if the taxpayer says that he or she prefers the donation to go to a certain person and understands the charity has full authority to use the money as they wish, the contribution can be deducted.
To value a donation, the IRS offers some general information about household items and clothing, and provides more specific information on cars, boats, airplanes, jewelry, art, real estate and patents. Both Goodwill Industries and the Salvation Army have online resources to help taxpayers determine the value of their donation.
eBay and craigslist can also be a good resource to show the fair market value of items that perha
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