Working with Donors

In-Depth knowledge on Working with Donors

In this week's Washington Snapshot: Treasury, IRS Withdraw Proposed Rule for Gift Substantiation; DAFs & Child Sponsorship to Charities; State Policy Action in 2015 Predicts Focus Areas in 2016; Update on Financial Action Task Force (FATF); National Taxpayer Advocate Names 1023-EZ Third Most Serious Problem; and more!

In this week's Washington Snapshot: Senate Passes Permanent IRA Charitable Rollover; Council Submits Comments on IRS Gift Substantiation Proposal; Omnibus Blocks IRS Political Activity Rulemaking; FASB votes to Revise Nonprofit Presentation of Cash Flows; DAFs, IRAs, & BFFs; Pay For Success Programs Offer "No Free Lunch"; and more!

A proposed rule by the IRS would allow charities to file an additional information return by February 28th each year that includes taxpayer identification information for donors who contribute $250 or more, and provide a copy of the return to these donors in lieu of a contemporaneous written acknowledgment. The Council believes this rule is problematic, and submitted comments to the Treasury Department voicing our concerns. Notably, these comments reflected concern for 1) the administrative burden this process would place on charitable organizations to collect this information from donors, 2) the privacy of donors’ sensitive information, 3) the deterrent effect this could have on charities’ relationships with their donors, and 4) the “slippery slope” it poses to evolve from an optional method to a mandatory requirement.

G W A L

Legal Affairs

The Council has six full-time attorneys with a breadth of experience on staff. This team of experts is a valuable resource to Council members, and is available to provide information on a wide range of topics that impact foundation operations.

In this week's Washington Snapshot: Just Announced: August Recess Toolkit; Recap: House Passes America Gives More Act of 2014; Next Steps on Tax Extenders; Chairman Wyden Restates Commitment to Tax Reform; NEW in Snapshot: Trending in Council Legal Affairs; The IRS Can Read Minds: “Gifts” of Real Property; PACE Report on Transparency and Accountability; Upcoming NASCO Conference; Rocky Mountain Tax Seminar

Community foundations are often faced with requests from donors or local volunteers who wish to express their support by raising money for the community foundation or for a particular fund. Allowing individuals or a group of volunteers to engage in fundraising activities on behalf of the community foundation (a practice called donor-initiated fundraising) can be a great way to increase foundation assets and boost name recognition in the community. However, this approach to fundraising also comes with risks. The community foundation is delegating its authority to individuals or groups who are neither staff nor board members of the community foundation. Before allowing others to fundraise on the foundation’s behalf, foundations should understand the key issues and create a strong policy to guide fundraising activities. The fundraising policy should be carefully explained to potential donor-fundraisers before fundraising begins.