What sort of volunteer or donation related expenses can I deduct?

Tax Tips Sponsored by WEBTAX

You can deduct your contributions only if you make them to a qualified organization. Most organizations, other than churches and governments, must apply to the IRS to become a qualified organization.

Deductible as Charitable Contributions:
Money or property you give to:

  • Churches, synagogues, temples, mosques, and other religious organizations
  • Federal, state, and local governments, if your contribution is solely for public purposes (for example, a gift to reduce the public debt or maintain a public park)
  • Nonprofit schools and hospitals
  • The Salvation Army, American Red Cross, CARE, Goodwill Industries, United Way, Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of America, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, etc.
  • War veterans’ groups
  • Expenses paid for a student living with you, sponsored by a qualified organization
  • Out-of-pocket expenses when you serve a qualified organization as a volunteer

NOT Deductible as Charitable Contributions:

Money or property you give to:

  • Civic leagues, social and sports clubs, labor unions, and chambers of commerce
  • Foreign organizations (except certain Canadian, Israeli, and Mexican charities)
  • Groups that are run for personal profit
  • Groups whose purpose is to lobby for law changes
  • Homeowners’ associations
  • Individuals
  • Political groups or candidates for public office
  • Cost of raffle, bingo, or lottery tickets
  • Dues, fees, or bills paid to country clubs, lodges, fraternal orders, or similar groups
  • Tuition
  • Value of your time or services
  • Value of blood given to a blood bank

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