Substantiation of Contributions
A donor can deduct a charitable contribution of $250 or more only if the donor has a written acknowledgment from the charitable organization.
The donor must get the acknowledgement by the earlier of:
- The date the donor files the original return for the year the contribution is made, or
- The due date, including extensions, for filing the return.
The donor is responsible for requesting and obtaining the written acknowledgement from the donee.
A donor cannot claim a deduction for any contribution of cash, a check or other monetary gift made on or after January 1, 2007, unless the donor maintains a written record of the contribution.
The written acknowledgment required to substantiate a charitable contribution of $250 or more must contain the following information:
- name of the organization;
- amount of cash contribution;
- description (but not value) of non-cash contribution;
- statement that no goods or services were provided by the organization, if that is the case;
- description and good faith estimate of the value of goods or services, if any, that organization provided in return for the contribution; and statement that goods or services, if any, that the organization provided in return for the contribution consisted entirely of intangible religious benefits, if that was the case.
In addition, a donor may claim a deduction for contributions of cash, check, or other monetary gifts only if the donor maintains certain written records.