Tax Deductions and Religious Givings
Do you give donations, tithes or offerings to your church or religious organization? If so, the IRS allows you to deduct the givings and offerings. If you itemize your deductions, in most cases you can claim 100 percent of your givings and donations.
What are the requirements?
These givings can be deducted from your taxes if you itemize your expenses on a Schedule A when filing your personal tax return. In order to use Schedule A your total itemized deductions must exceed the standard deduction for your particular filing status. Church givings do not carry any additional tax savings when the standard deduction has a greater tax benefit.
What about cash donations to Religious organizations and churches?
You must keep some record of your cash donation. It can be in the form of a receipt or canceled check. You are not required to send these to the IRS but if the IRS ever contacts you it is good to have your bases covered. Donations greater than $250 are required to have written receipt from the church. The receipt is required to include the donation amount, description of goods or services provided to you in exchange for the donation and acknowledgement that the other benefit you receive is intangible and religious. You'll be required to reduce your deduction by the value of any tangible goods or services.
How much can I deduct in religious givings?
The total of your church donations and other charitable donations must be less than 50% of your AGI (adjusted gross income). If it is greater than 50% then you can not deduct 100% of the givings and donations. Don't fret, you can always use these deductions within the next five years.
More questions about religious givings?
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