Most donations on GoFundMe aren’t tax deductible. The good news is that you may have other options.
Are GoFundMe Donations tax deductible?
Most GoFundMe donations aren’t tax deductible because they don’t count as charitable contributions.
In order to make a donation tax deductible, it normally has to be to a qualifying charitable organization. Qualifying charitable organizations include places like churches and other 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations.
Qualifying organizations have to be registered through the IRS. You can still make charitable donations to other groups or individuals, but they won’t count as tax-deductible donations.
Most personal GoFundMe fundraisers don’t qualify for a tax-deductible donation, because you’re giving the money to an individual rather than a qualifying organization. These donations count as personal gifts that don’t qualify for tax deductions.
GoFundMe also has other groups that give the money raised to a good cause but where the group isn’t a registered non-profit. These donations are also generally not deductible.
GoFundMe does offer some charity fundraisers that do qualify for tax-deductible donations. These are usually done with a GoFundMe charity partner and specifically marked on the fundraiser page as being made to a 501(c)(3) organization or other qualifying charity.
Caution: Make sure a charity fundraiser is approved by GoFundMe. Some people may falsely claim to be charities on the fundraiser page, and you won’t qualify for a deduction. While GoFundMe will usually stop these false claims, things can slip through.
How else can you make a tax-deductible donation?
If you’re looking to make a tax-deductible contribution, you have two common alternatives to make a non-deductible donation to a personal GoFundMe fundraiser.
You Want to Support a Specific Cause
Some people search GoFundMe campaigns that are related to causes they want to support. They might not have any connection to the person or group raising the funds.
Instead of donating on GoFundMe, you may want to find a certified charity that supports the cause you’re looking to support. This will allow you to deduct charitable contributions.
In some cases, charities are also better equipped to make sure people are actually in need compared to you or GoFundMe.
You Want to Support a Specific Person or Group
If you want to support a specific person or group, you may be able to donate indirectly through a charity rather than through a personal fundraiser.
For example, if you want to help someone with hospital expenses incurred after an accident, you can ask your church or another charity if you can donate to them so they can donate to that person. Since you’re giving the money to a qualifying organization instead of the person, you can usually claim a tax deduction this way.
One thing to watch out for is that the fundraiser still needs to be for a qualifying charitable purpose. For example, if a family member wants to raise funds for a donation, you won’t be able to donate through a charity and get a deduction.
What’s the limit on how much you can give through GoFundMe?
There are generally no limits on how much you can give through GoFundMe. If you make deductible donations, your total donations to all places (not just GoFundMe) are subject to the charitable contributions deduction limit.
The limit on deductible donations is usually 60% of your Adjusted Gross Income. You’ll also need to itemize deductions, so you may not get an extra charitable deduction if you use the standard deduction.
If you go over, you may be able to use the extra amount to take a deduction in a future year.
There is also no penalty if you donate more than the IRS limits. You just won’t get a tax deduction for the amount you donated over the limit.