Rules on Tax Deductions for Vehicle Donations

It is possible to receive tax deductions on charitable car donations in the US. Firstly, though, it’s important to know the rules and procedures for selling a vehicle to a charity. Otherwise, you may not be eligible for a tax deduction.

Charity Rules

After confirming that you are eligible to receive tax deductions, it’s important to make sure that the charity you are donating to is legitimately recognized. If not then your donation will not contribute towards a tax deduction.

The types of charities eligible for this scheme commonly include religious and educational organizations. To find out if a particular charity is eligible, you can use the “Exempt Organizations (EO) Select Check” search tool on the Inland Revenue’s website or phone customer services at the IRS for organization such as churches and temples not listed on EO Search Check.

Rules on Qualifying

Deductions for charitable contributions need to be itemized on Schedule A of your 1040 Form. Further to this, there are limitations on how much of your adjusted gross income a deduction may exceed – specifically 50%.

For more information, the 526 Publication, “Charitable Contributions,” is available on the IRS website.

How Much You Can Deduct

The amount of your deduction will depend on what happens to your car after it has been donated. For instance, if the charity sells your vehicle you can benefit from a deduction that is limited to its gross profit to the charity, although there are exceptions.

For deductions greater than $500, a “Written Acknowledgement” must be filled out with your general details – name, tax number, vehicle identification number, etc. – as well as information dependent on what happened to the car after it was sold. For example, details about the gross proceeds from a sale must include date of sale, total gross profit, etc.

Keeping Records and Filing

For deductions greater than $500, the charity’s acknowledgement must be attached to your tax return, as well as additional records or forms depending on circumstances.

On form 8282 of your tax return, deductions between $500 and $5,000 must be completed in Section A. Section B of the 8283 form is reserved for anything over $5,000 and should include the relevant charity’s signature attached.

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