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IRS announces new-old charity volunteer mileage rate for 2015

The Internal Revenue Service has issued the 2015 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes.

Beginning on Jan. 1, 2015, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car (also vans, pickups or panel trucks) will be:

57.5 cents per mile for [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Ed models the sticker

Two-week appeal helps us Do Good

Your donation matters

Ed models the sticker

All SeriousGivers services are free. We keep our costs to a minimum. But we depend on donations to pay costs of the services we provide year-round. Services like

Doing Good Matters podcast
Serious Thoughts blog
SeriousGivers.org
CharityCheck101.org
CarDonationCalculator.org
Weekly email updates for the Doing Good Matters community

Today is December 17. Our goal is to raise $3,000 [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Nellie becomes a charity car donation

Nellie becomes a charity car donation

Charity car donation riddle

Nellie – Became a $2,000 charity car donation

Patty’s 15-year-old Jeep Cherokee Laredo, affectionately called “Nellie,” has triggered a new riddle.

Question: When is a car not a car? Answer: When it turns into a charity donation.

In this case, Nellie turned into a $2,000 charity donation. Here’s the story.

Background

A while back I wrote [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Protect Year-End Deductions

Protect your year-end donation deductions

A Q&A to help you protect your year-end charitable deductions

Listen to the podcast on protecting your donation deductions.

Question #1: You use your credit card to donate to a qualified charity on December 31 this year. You don’t pay the credit card bill until January next year. For which year do you get to take the [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

IRS tips

2014 year-end donation tips from the IRS

The IRS just published its year-end charity donation tips for 2014.

Tops on the list of donation tips (with our added notes)

Be sure you are dealing with a qualified charity.

Note: CharityCheck101.org will show you whether or not an organization is qualified.

Know what amount you can deduct (cash at face value, fair market value for personal articles, [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Donor advised fund giving grew

Gifts to donor advised funds grew 23 percent

The Chronicle of Philanthropy reports that a  flood of contributions to donor advised funds pushed assets of the charitable accounts to a new high of nearly $54-billion in 2013, according to a new report.

But the report also found that those accounts distributed a slightly smaller share of assets to charities last year than in 2012.

Donors [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Happy Veterans Day

Help for Veterans and the Military

The folks over at CharityWatch.org have just published a thoughtful guide to helping veterans and the military. The report is part of the CharityWatch Winter 2014-15 Charity Rating Guide & Watchdog Report. It’s available now only to CharityWatch members (annual membership is $50 for an individual). Among other things, the report:

Reminds us that there are [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Overhead Percentage

Make sense of charity overhead and program spending | DGM 033

Make sense of charity overhead and program spending

Welcome. This is the podcast that helps you do good even better — regardless of which charities or causes you support. 

This is Ed Long. In each podcast I talk about charities and provide actionable tips to help donors and volunteers to take their philanthropy to the next [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Listen to a podcast

What is a Podcast?

Podcasting is like internet radio, but better.

It’s better because you can listen to

what you want to,
when you want,
where you want to,
without having a radio and
without being connected to the internet.

You can listen to a podcast at the gym, in your car, taking a walk, on the couch — you get to choose.

Podcasting does [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Charitable Giving

Wealthiest pulled back charitable giving while others stepped it up

The wealthiest Americans—those who earned $200,000 or more—reduced the share of income they gave to charity from 2006 to 2012.

Meanwhile, Americans who earned less than $100,000 chipped in more of their income during the same time period.

Even though wealthier Americans donated a smaller share of their income, the total amount of their charitable giving increased [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Ice Bucket Challenge

Ice bucket challenge flood creates more challenges

According to press reports, the Ice Bucket Challenge has produced million in donations for the A.L.S. Association. The A.L.S. Association website at October 3 reports $115 million received since July 29.

The A.L.S. Association (EIN = 13-3271855) is a Washington, D.C. -based nonprofit that funds global research to find treatments and a cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Your Multiple Legacies

Think About Your Multiple Legacies | DGM 032

Think About Your Multiple Legacies

Welcome. This is the podcast that helps you do good even better — regardless of which charities or causes you support. 

This is Ed Long. In each podcast I talk about charities and provide actionable tips to help donors and volunteers to take their philanthropy to the next level and do [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Car donation bull_

Charity car donations featured in Everything is Bull**** book

CarDonationCalculator.org (a program of SeriousGivers) helps potential charity car donors make better decisions about car donations. As we point out at CarDonationCalculator.org, the typical car donation program can produce a small percentage of a car’s value for the sponsoring charity.

A new book titled “Everything Is Bullshit” chooses charity car donation programs as one of its [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Charity Review

New York Collaborates for Autism Inc. (NYC4A)

Review date: July 31, 2014.

Charity category: Health-related charities.

Angel vs. Vampire: Neither

More about Charity of the Day.

About New York Collaborates for Autism Inc. (NYC4A)

Identity: If you search the IRS database or CharityCheck101.org for an organization with “autism” in its name, you’ll find 845. If you search for “new york” and “autism” you’ll find 3. We’re reporting today on New York Collaborates [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Top 7 Charity Research Websites

The Top Seven Charity Research Websites | DGM 031

The Top Seven Charity Research Websites

Welcome. This is the podcast that helps you do good even better — regardless of which charities or causes you support. 

This is Ed Long. In each podcast I talk about charities and provide actionable tips to help donors and volunteers to take their philanthropy to the next level and [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Legislation would boost charitable giving

Tax legislation seeks to boost charitable giving

Legislation pending before the U.S. House of Representatives aims to boost charitable giving.

The legislation includes

A return of the ability of those 70 1/2 or older to donate tax-free from their IRAs.
A new ability to take a charitable deduction for a calendar year if you make the donation by the following April 15.
An easing of foundation [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

IRS tips

IRS tips on deducting volunteer travel costs

Volunteer travel costs summary

The IRS just released tips on deducting costs of volunteer travel for charity. Here’s a quick summary,

You can’t deduct the value of your services. But you can deduct some out-of-pocket costs.
You must be traveling for a qualified charity.
There’s no deduction if a significant part of the trip is for recreation or vacation.
You can [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

Nellie becomes a charity car donation

Is making a charity car donation smart or foolish? | DGM 030

Is making a charity car donation smart or foolish?

Welcome. This is the podcast that helps you do good even better — regardless of which charities or causes you support. 

This is Ed Long. In each podcast I talk about charities and provide actionable tips to help donors and volunteers to take their philanthropy to the [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]

IRS makes 501(c)(3) easier

Now easier to get 501(c)(3) IRS charity exemption

501(c)(3) application is now simpler

The IRS has introduced a new, shorter form that small organizations can use to apply for section 501(c)(3) IRS charity exemption from taxes.

The new Form 1023-EZ is three pages long. Compare this to the standard 26-page Form 1023. The IRS tells us that as many as 70% of applicants will qualify [... click on the headline and get the full article ...]


A 2-minute video introduction to SeriousGivers.

Find a Charity or Nonprofit — At CharityCheck101.org you can check the identity and tax status of every nonprofit recognized by the IRS (more than 1.4 million of them). Possibly the best free donor protection tool ever — helping you avoid fake charities and find legitimate ones.

Car Donation Calculator – Ever thought about donating your used car to charity? The Calculator will quickly help you figure out the smartest approach for your car, in your circumstances. This is not a car donation program. SeriousGivers doesn’t have a car donation program. And we don’t plan to have one.

Charity Reviews — Read reviews and find quick information about charities we’ve covered at Charity of the Day.

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Volunteers and Taxes — Where volunteers ask questions and find answers to what they can deduct under the IRS rules.

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You give, you care, you want to make the world better. You want the dollars you give and the volunteer hours you spend to be used wisely and well by a strong charity focused on what matters to you. We’re dedicated to helping you — regardless of which charities or causes you support.

Latest Updates

IRS announces new-old charity volunteer mileage rate for 2015 - 12-19-2014
The Internal Revenue Service has issued the 2015 optional standard mileage rates used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes. Beginning on Jan. 1, 2015, the standard mileag...


Two-week appeal helps us Do Good - 12-17-2014
Your donation matters All SeriousGivers services are free. We keep our costs to a minimum. But we depend on donations to pay costs of the services w...
Nellie becomes a charity car donation - 12-13-2014
Charity car donation riddle Patty's 15-year-old Jeep Cherokee Laredo, affectionately called "Nellie," has triggered a new riddl...
Protect your year-end donation deductions - 12-06-2014
A Q&A to help you protect your year-end charitable deductions Listen to the podcast on protecting your donation deductions. Question #1: You use your credit card to donate to a qualified charity on December 31 this year. You don't pay the cre...
2014 year-end donation tips from the IRS - 11-29-2014
The IRS just published its year-end charity donation tips for 2014. Tops on the list of donation tips (with our added notes) Be sure you are dealing with a qualified charity. Note: CharityCheck101.org will show you whether or not an organiza...

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