Very recently I was asked some questions about charitable donations or contributions and tax returns. So I figured if one person needed answers, I’m sure there are many others who could benefit from these answers as well.
And, I thought the easiest way is to do a sort of “Frequently Asked Questions” blog. I hope this helps clear up any confusion. So, here goes.
Question: If I go with a standard deduction and make non-cash donations, can I still deduct them from my income?
Answer: No. Unfortunately, you can only use these donations as a deduction if you itemize on Form 1040, Schedule A.
Question: Can I make donations before April 15 and still deduct them from the tax year 2007?
Answer: No. Only donations and contributions made during tax year 2007 can be deducted. So the donation needed to be made on or before Dec. 31, 2007.
Question: Can I deduct contributions made to a political organization or candidate?
Answer: No. Contributions made to specific individuals, political organizations or candidates are not deductible. And, you cannot deduct the value of your time or services donated. Deductible contributions must be made to qualified organizations.
Question: What if I donate $300 to a qualified organization?
Answer: You can claim the deduction for individual contributions of $250 or more if you obtain a written acknowledgment from the organization.
Question: How can I claim the deduction for donating a refrigerator and stove?
Answer: Clothing and household items must be in good, used condition or better in order to be a deductible item.
Question: How do I come up with a value for property I want to donate?
Answer: If you have stock or property you want to donate, the fair market value of the stock or property is used.
For more information on charitable contributions, you can visit www.irs.gov.