What are the rules and regulations for obtaining an official receipt for a charitable donation?

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The kinds of records on charitable donations required by the IRS depend on the amount of the donation and whether it is a cash or non-cash contribution. As for regulations for obtaining a receipt, according to IRS agent #4319116, organizations generally must give you a written statement (including the name of the organization, date and amount of the donation) when they receive a contribution of more than $250 from you (or more than $75 where the money is partly a contribution and partly for goods or services).

For non-cash contributions valued at more than $250, they also must give you a written acknowledgment, including a description of the donation. If you do not receive a statement from the organization, we recommend that you call or write them to request one. For cash contributions under $250, a cancelled check or account statement for ACH payment serves as an adequate record of the donation. See IRS publication 526, Charitable Contributions, pages 12-14. (For all questions concerning compliance rules, we also recommend that you contact the IRS and document the answer, including agent name & number and date. This protects you by having a documented reference source at the IRS giving you their understanding of your situation, since the regulations sometimes require interpretation. You can reach a live agent for information on this question at (800) 829-1040, and for information reporting (1099) questions at (866) 455-7438.)

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