Tax Deduction Consulting: Car Donations Washington DC
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Tax Deduction Consulting: Car Donations
Car Donation Tax Deduction
When you itemize your deductions, donations to qualified charities or churches are allowed. The car donation tax deduction applies when you donate an automobile and is subject to special rules.
Charitable deductions are a well known and common itemized deduction. When the deduction is an automobile, boat, or airplane, it is subject to some special rules. The car donation tax deduction requires the filing of Form 1098-C which is a form for Contributions of Motor Vehicles, Boats, and Airplanes. It is possible to use another statement from the charitable organization in lieu of Form 1098-C as long as it contains all of the information that would be found on the 1098-C form.
If the value of the automobile is less than $500, the form 1098-C is not necessary and the contribution is treated as a regular charitable donation. If the value is over $500, the amount of the donation is either the gross proceeds from the sale of the vehicle or the vehicle's fair market value at the time of the donation. In the unlikely event that the fair market value is actually higher than your cost or basis on the vehicle, it must be adjusted under the IRS rules for "Giving Property that has increased in value."
When the charitable organization sells the vehicle, it should send a copy of Form 1098-C within 30 days of the sale. When this is done, it is the gross proceeds from the sale that may be deducted. This will be reflected on the 1098-C or equivalent statement. For example, if you donate a vehicle that has a fair market value of $6000 and the organization sells it for $2900, it is $2900 that may be deducted as a charitable donation.
An exception to this rule is when the charitable organization sells the vehicle at a considerably reduced price to a needy individual as a part of its charitable mission. In this case, the fair market value is what can be used as the deduction amount. Again, this information will be reflected on the Form 1098-C.