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  • Gifts and donations

    Organisations entitled to receive tax deductible gifts are called 'deductible gift recipients' (DGRs). You can only claim a tax deduction for gifts or donations to organisations that have a DGR status.

    The person that makes the gift (the donor) is the person that can claim a deduction.

    To claim a tax deduction for a gift, it must meet four conditions:

    • The gift must be made to a DGR. Check whether your donation was to an endorsed DGR at ABN Look-up: Deductible gift recipientsExternal Link.
    • The gift must truly be a gift. A gift is voluntary transfer of money or property where you don't receive, or expect to receive, any material benefit or advantage in return.
    • The gift must be money or property, which includes financial assets such as shares.
    • The gift must comply with any relevant gift conditions. For some DGRs, the income tax law adds extra conditions affecting types of deductible gifts they can receive.

    You can't claim a tax deduction for donations made to crowdfunding platforms if they are not a DGR.

    For a summary of this content in poster format, see Gifts and Donations (PDF, 302KB)This link will download a file.

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    What you can claim

    The amount you can claim as a deduction depends on the type of gift. For gifts of money, it is the amount of the gift, but it must be $2 or more. For gifts of property, there are different rules, depending on the type, and value of the property.

    There are special circumstances under the Heritage and Cultural programs where donations can also be deductible – see Cultural Gifts Program.

    You can claim a tax deduction for most gifts in the tax return for the income year in which the gift is given. However, you can elect to spread the tax deduction over five income years in certain circumstances.

    Bucket donations

    If you made donations of $2 or more to bucket collections conducted by an approved organisation for natural disaster (bushfire and flood) victims, you can claim a tax deduction equal to your contribution without a receipt, provided the contribution does not exceed $10.

    Political party and independent candidate donations

    In some circumstances, your gifts and donations to registered political parties, independent candidates may be claimed as a deduction.

    Your gift or donation must be $2 or more and be money or property that you purchased 12 months before making the donation. This includes if you pay a membership subscription to a registered political party. You must also make the gift or donation as an individual, not in the course of carrying on a business, and it can't be a testamentary donation.

    The most you can claim in an income year is:

    • $1500 for contributions and gifts to political parties
    • $1500 for contributions and gifts to independent candidates and members.

    You must have a written record of your donation.

    See also:

    What you can't claim

    You can't claim gifts or donations that provide you with a personal benefit, such as:

    • raffle or art union tickets
    • items such as chocolates and pens
    • the cost of attending fundraising dinners, even if the cost exceeds the value of the dinner
    • membership fees
    • payments to school building funds made – for example, as an alternative to an increase in school fees
    • payments where you have an understanding with the recipient that the payments will be used to provide a benefit to you.

    See also:

    Keeping donation records

    You should keep records of all tax deductible gifts and contributions you make.

    When you make a donation, the DGR will usually issue you with a receipt although they are not required to. If this is the case, in some circumstance, you can still claim a deduction by using other records such as bank statements.

    If a DGR issues a receipt for a deductible gift, the receipt must state:

    • the name of the fund, authority or institution the donation has been made to
    • the DGR's ABN (some DGR's listed by name might not have an ABN)
    • that the receipt is for a gift.

    If you give through a workplace giving program your payment summary, income statement of written record from your employer is sufficient evidence.

    See also:

    Last modified: 25 Jun 2019QC 31906