News & Analysis as of

Charitable deductions: Substantiate them or lose them

Qualifying for a charitable deduction is, in some respects, a matter of form over substance. The IRS could disallow a deduction, even if it’s otherwise legitimate, if the donor fails to follow the substantiation requirements...more

Six IRS Rules to Follow for Year-End Gifts to Charity

The holiday season is often a time for charitable gift giving. Here is a list of tax rules to follow to ensure your charitable deduction is respected by the IRS: - Qualified Charities. You can only deduct gifts to...more

'Tis the Season for Year-End Charitable Gifts

As you are making your list and checking it twice, you might want to consider whether you want to make any year-end gifts to your favorite charities. If you do, you will be in good company. According to the National...more

Tax Blog: Tax Tips for Gifts to Charity

As the holidays approach and the end of the year draws near, the IRS has again released its list of tips for giving to charity. Of course, these rules apply to obtaining a legitimate tax-deduction for the donation. If that is...more

IRS Acts Quickly to Facilitate Donations for Ebola Victims and Offer Tax Relief

While employers and employees alike are asking questions about the proper workplace response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, these same folks are also asking how they can help the victims, their families and those who...more

Qualifying for 501(c)(3) Tax Exempt Status is Tricky

The entities in the following IRS Technical Advice Memorandum and Private Letter Rulings failed to qualify for tax exempt status because they were not operated exclusively for exempt purposes. An organization must be...more

Religious Institutions: August 2014

If the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) had a moratorium on enforcing §501(c)(3) electioneering restrictions against churches and religious organizations, the IRS states that it has been lifted incident to the settlement and...more

Recent Developments and Trends for Exempt Organizations

2013 was something of a lost year for the Exempt Organizations (EO) Division of the IRS. In the spring, the Division was embroiled in a controversy involving the targeting of conservative advocacy groups that led to the...more

Substantiation is a Requirement to Deduct a Charitable Contribution

Donors must receive acknowledgment letters from charitable organizations in order to deduct contributions of $250 or more. See IRS Publication 1771....more

Tax Tip: Don't Lose Your Charitable Deduction for Lack of Paperwork - A message from tax attorney Paul Topolka, former District...

Charitable contributions are only deductible if you itemize and have the proper substantiation. For cash contributions of less than $250, you must have either a cancelled check/credit card receipt or a written...more

High Net Worth Family Tax Report, Vol. 8. No. 4 -- December 2013

IRS Explains Federal Tax Consequences of Windsor Case Regarding Same-Sex Marriages - In our last report (Vol. 8, No. 3, September 2013), we told you about the recent Windsor case, in which the Supreme Court held...more

‘Tis the Season – For Year-End Charitable Giving

Most people make the bulk of their charitable contributions during the year-end holiday season. This post summarizes some of the charitable giving ideas and opportunities, as well as some planning reminders, that donors may...more

IRS Issues Updated Guidance for Vehicle Donations

We’ve all heard and read the radio and newspaper ads that encourage donors to contribute their vehicles to charity. The advertisements attempt to convince donors to donate their old “jalopies” (whether they run or not) and...more

Deductible Charitable Contributions Can Be Made Through An Agent

Most taxpayers making charitable contributions will transfer their own funds or property to the charitable recipient. What happens if another person or entity makes the actual transfer to the charitable recipient?...more

Tips for Deducting Expenses Incurred for Charity Travel

Many people combine their summer travel with charity work. Some travel expenses may be deductible against federal and state income taxes for those who itemize deductions. The IRS recently posted five tax tips for taxpayers...more

Tax Court Deals Another Blow to Conservation Easements

On June 24, 2013, the U.S. Tax Court disallowed a couple’s deduction for the donation of a conservation easement on the façade of a building to the National Architectural Trust, a qualified charitable organization. The court...more

Side Agreement Voids Charitable Deduction

Most tax attorneys perk up when they hear the term “side agreement.” Oftentimes, the side agreement is simply a method to hide a part of a transaction from the IRS, that if known to the IRS would likely have adverse tax...more

High Net Worth Family Tax Report, Vol. 8, No. 2 -- May 2013

President’s fiscal year 2014 budget contains numerous tax provisions - President Barack Obama released his proposed budget for the government’s fiscal year 2014 on April 10, 2013, and, not surprisingly, the budget...more

Internet Fundraising for Tax-Exempt Organizations

The IRS recently released an Information Letter, written in response to a congressman’s inquiry about an unidentified charity’s unidentified practices, confirming that Section 501(c)(3) organizations may use the internet to...more

Protection and Goodwill – Documenting Charitable Contributions in the Eyes of the IRS

April 15th is just around the corner, and every year clients ask us what paperwork is needed to document charitable contributions. As a reminder, the IRS allows you to deduct up to 50% of your adjusted gross income donated...more

Consider a Private Foundation to Fulfill Your Philanthropic Goals

There are a variety of vehicles through which individuals and families can promote their charitable giving goals, and private foundations are often a leading choice. Simply stated, a private foundation is a type of charitable...more

IRS Issues Regulations for Type III Supporting Organizations

Type III supporting organizations should take steps to comply with new regulations and funders should review due diligence procedures for grants made to these organizations. On December 21, 2012, the Internal Revenue...more

IRS Announces Deadline to Make 2012 Charitable/IRA Rollovers

On January 16, 2013, the IRS issued a notice (IR-2013-6) advising that certain IRA owners have a limited time to make tax-free transfers to eligible charities and have them count for 2012. IRA owners age 70½ or older have...more

New Tax Act Provides Long-Awaited Clarity and Certainty on Estate, Gift and Generation-Skipping Transfer Taxes, and Income Tax...

On January 1, 2013, the Senate and the House of Representatives passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA), averting the so-called “fiscal cliff.” The legislation, which was signed by President Obama on January 2,...more

New Tax Act's Impact on Planning for Charitable Donations

New Year's Day brought new tax legislation passed by Congress, called the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the "Act"), which President Obama has signed into law. The Act has made some important changes to the tax law...more

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