General Question

john65pennington's avatar

My mother died last year. Donated 99% of her property to Goodwill. What percentage can I deduct on my 2011 tax return?

Asked by john65pennington (29220points) January 25th, 2012

Most everything she owned was donated to Goodwill. I was the legal executor of her estate. I received an itemized list of the property donated to Goodwill. A fair market price will be estimated for each article donated.

Question: is there a ceiling limit on donations to charities for income tax deduction purposes? Also, is there a certain form I have to complete and send to the IRS?

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7 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Here is the IRS publication that discusses these issues. Excerpt:

“In general, contributions to charitable organizations may be deducted up to 50 percent of adjusted gross income computed without regard to net operating loss carrybacks. Contributions to certain private foundations, veterans organizations, fraternal societies, and cemetery organizations are limited to 30 percent adjusted gross income (computed without regard to net operating loss carrybacks), however. Exempt Organizations Select Check uses deductibility status codes to indicate these limitations.”

YARNLADY's avatar

I’m wondering if you can actually deduct any of it, since you never legally owned it. If it was donated directly in her will, she donated it, not you.

WestRiverrat's avatar

I think you need to talk to either an estate lawyer of a tax specialist about this one. The normal rules don’t always apply when dealing with estates.

john65pennington's avatar

A little further explanation. In her will, my mother left everything to me. Once she passed, the will states this property belongs to me. I have no need for this property, although I grew up with most it. Since I am now the owner, can I take the deduction?

bkcunningham's avatar

@john65pennington, doesn’t the estate have to file an IRS tax form? I think the estate is who gets the tax deductions for the charitable contributions.

http://www.nysscpa.org/cpajournal/2004/804/essentials/p38.htm

JLeslie's avatar

@john65pennington I think you probably can deduct it. Ask a tax accountant or call the IRS directly.

cazzie's avatar

If the donation receipt is in your name, I am pretty sure you can.

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