Albert E. Bergen, CPA

Contributions for Specific Individuals

The tax code doesn’t allow a charitable contribution deductions for gifts made for a specific individual.  This is true even when a qualified charity collects the donation for the individual.  Donations made directly to a member of the clergy to be used for their own purposes are also not deductible.  Sadly, this restriction also extends to the payment of medical or other expenses for a needy individual.

Whether or not a contribution is deductible shouldn’t be the last work in whether or not to make a contribution.  Keep in mind that a portion of most donations made to charitable organizations has to be spent on overhead.  When a donation is made directly to someone in need presumably 100% of the donation amount goes to helping them.  That means you can  often do as much good with a non-deductible contribution to an individual as you could with a gift to a church or non-profit group.  Just don’t make the mistake of deducting it on your taxes.

The person who inspired this post is Wynter Przybylski, the 7-year-old daughter of a high school friends and the subject of a recent Bangor Daily News article.  Wynter is battling childhood leukemia and the Pryzbylski’s have a page up seeking donations to help with her care.  I’ve included a couple of links about Wynter’s story below.  The donations they receive for this are not tax-deductible, but can do a lot of good!

http://bangordailynews.com/2014/04/12/news/bangor/community-rallies-behind-brewer-girl-battling-cancer/

http://wabi.tv/2014/04/09/brewer-girl-fighting-leukemia-finds-community-support/

http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/cancer-messed-with-the-wrong-girl/154540/update/150281

 

photo credit: N08/6510934443/”>asenat29 via photopin cc

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