As Australians we are devastated by the sheer volume of destruction that our fire season has already brought to our country.   It is refreshing to see the Aussie spirit shining through as well as international support pouring in with donations to help the people affected, our Firies and our wildlife.

Many people will be looking at claiming their donations back on their tax returns so here’s a few points to bear in mind:

  • The donation must be to a Deductible gift recipient.
  • There must be no material benefit ie raffle tickets etc.  However, items of a token value such as wrist bands or lapel pins etc are not considered a material benefit.
  • Donations to crowd-funding platforms such as GoFundMe are not tax deductible.
  • Donating purchased goods such as groceries can be deductible if you get a receipt from a Deductible Gift Recipient charity to prove the donation.
  • To claim a deduction for goods and property, must be under 12 months old, or valued by the ATO at more than $5000 if older than 12months.
  • Bucket donations can be claimed without receipt to $10 for the year.
  • The tax deduction claimed for donating a gift cannot add to or create a tax loss. The deduction can reduce your assessable income to nil in the tax year in which the gift is made, but any excess cannot be claimed in that year.
    • However, in advance of lodging your tax return, you can choose to spread the tax deduction over a period of up to five income years. You may choose to do this because:
      • you may not be able to claim the whole amount in the current year
      • you earn a greater income in some years than others.
    • You can choose to spread the tax deduction over a period of up to five income years if the gift was one of the following:
      • money of $2 or more or property valued at more than $5000. Use the Election to spread gift deduction form.  This must be completed before lodging the tax return for the year in which the gift was made