November 14th, 2014 is National Philanthropy Day here in Canada, and the Honourable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of National Revenue, was in Vancouver to applaud those Canadians who donate to charities and to remind Canadians to take advantage of the tax credits available for eligible charitable donations.
Receiving special attention was the new temporary donor super tax credit which provides an extra 25% federal tax credit on top of the original charitable donation tax credit which means that eligible first-time donors can get a 40% federal tax credit for monetary donations of $200 or less, and a 54% federal tax credit for the portion of donations that are over $200 up to a maximum of $1,000.
The donor super credit applies to donations made after March 20, 2013, and can only be claimed once between 2013 and 2017.
Those who have donated before can still be eligible for the charitable donation tax credit, a non-refundable tax credit which allows taxpayers to claim eligible amounts of gifts to a limit of 75% of their net income.
For a quick estimate of your charitable tax credit for the current tax year, try the charitable donation tax credit calculator, which can be found here.
Minister Findlay also reminded Canadians that only Canadian registered charities and other qualified donees can issue official donation tax receipts. This is extremely important because if you make a donation to a charity which is not eligible to issue donation tax receipts but they provide one anyways, the CRA will re-assess you for that donation deduction with penalties and interest. A little due diligence up front goes a very long way.
If it seems too good to be true, it should give you reason for concern…
To find out if an organization is registered, go to the Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) website and search their complete list of registered charities in their Charities Listings.
For more information about donating, such as how to calculate and claim the charitable tax credit, go to the CRA’s site for making donations, which is here.
Some Quick Facts
- Two years ago, Canada became the first country in the world to officially recognize November 15 as National Philanthropy Day.
- There are more than 85,000 registered charities in Canada.
- The benefit to charities of being a registered charity? Registration provides charities with exemption from income tax.
- According to Statistics Canada, in 2010 almost half of all Canadians volunteered, giving more than two billion hours of their time. In addition, in 2012, 5.6 million tax filers reported charitable donations for a total of $8.3 billion in donations reported.
- According to Statistics Canada, in 2012 the average age of charitable donors across the provinces and territories is 53 years old.
- Follow the CRA on Twitter – @CanRevAgency
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