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Charitable Contributions And Deductions - Appreciated Property and Non-deductible Contributions

Appreciated Property
Generally, the deduction for appreciated property is the fair market value (FMV) of the property donated. However, the amount of the deduction can depend on several factors such as the use of the property donated, holding period, the type of property and the nature of the charitable organization.

When donating stock or other securities listed on an exchange, the deduction is the average of the high and low sales prices on the date of the donation. For real estate, fine art and other not so commonly traded property, you'll need to hire the services of a qualified appraiser to value the property at the date of the gift.

Non-deductible Contributions
There are several different types of contributions that have good intentions, but in many cases the IRS will not allow the taxpayer a deduction. These types of non-deductible contributions include the following:

  • Blood donations
  • Gifts to fraternal organizations
  • Political campaign payments
  • Chambers of commerce, civic and business leagues and labor unions
  • Contributions directly to foreign governments
  • Lobbying organizations
  • Hospitals and schools that operate for profit
  • Professional groups for lawyers, accountants, physicians, etc.

Most unreimbursed expenses incurred during the donation of your services can be deducted; however, you may not deduct the value of volunteer work that you perform for charities.

Appraisals and Substantiation Requirements
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