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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Range Time as Tax-Deductible Donation

For a while now I've been working a way for Operation Blazing Sword instructors to count the expenses incurred from taking an LGBTQ student shooting as a charitable donation. I'm pleased to be able to give you an answer now, courtesy of OBS Legal Counsel:

Multiple Contributions
Generally, if a donor makes multiple contributions during the year, each of which is less than $250, no substantiation form is necessary. Nevertheless, the donor must observe the minimum recordkeeping requirements, such as retaining canceled checks or simple contributions. See below if a donor makes multiple contributions during the year and more than one is equal to or greater than $250, one substantiation can be used for the total amount. Treas Reg 1.170A-13(f)(1).

Written Acknowledgment of Donor Expenses
Donors who incur out-of-pocket expenses of $250 or more when rendering services to a charitable organization and intend to deduct these expenses must also obtain written acknowledgement from the organization. The acknowledgment for expenses incurred need only describe the services provided by the donor and the value of good services provided in return (or a statement that none were provided); it need not include the date of the services. Treas Reg 1.170A-13(f)(10).

Example: A youth leader attends an annual youth event, incurs expenses for food, lodging , and travel exceeding $250. To deduct these out-of-pocket expenses, the individual will need a written statement from the youth organization describing the event and the leader’s participation.

What This Means For You
  1. If you take an LGBTQ student shooting and your expenses (ammunition, range fees, targets, etc) are less than $250 per trip, then you just claim that on your taxes. You'd better keep a record, though. 
  2. If you spend more than $250 per trip (or maybe you're making banners with the OBS logo on them for a county fair or whatever), then you need to send us a copy of the receipt. We will then send you a thank-you letter acknowledging your donation.
This will cover any LGBTQ shooting sessions since last summer, and you have this information well before tax time. If you need a letter, just email me and I'll be happy to accomodate you.

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