Your taxes are due next month. Some folks may be re-look at the organizations (charities) they have given to in the past year. I know we do every year.
You can visit www.irs.gov/charities for a search of charitable organizations.
You can visit for free, Melissa’s Data and click on: look-ups, non-profits, www.melissadata.com. Here is where you can find a charities income and assets.
I know every year we evaluate what we will give to next year. Where is the money going? Does it go to salaries? services? Or are they raising money to provide services when other provide it for free in the community? Does the charity have large assets? Does the money you donate go to what it is intended? Do they spend too much on postage and mailouts? As a retired person, we can give less money, so we are real picky.
The tax laws require more specific documentation of your donated items.
Gently used items can be donated but you only get their true saleable value for your credit. In these cases you must estimate the cost of an item, list its worth at fair market value based on its condition.
If you donated less than $250.00, you need a receipt from that organization acknowledging what was given.
If you donate up to $500.00 or more, you need a letter on letterhead stating what you gave. If you got something in return, it is not deductible.
Up to $5,000 from an inheritance, you must have a receipt.
Over $5,000.00, you need a qualified written appraisal.
You need to File a Schedule A on the 1040 to claim your deduction. Actually a 8283 is for non cash donations over $500.00. Check out www.irs.gov
When you see a request from an organization, stating they are raising money for salaries or to provide services it means they are raising money for salaries.