Tax Deductable?

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Message 1113451 - Posted: 5 Jun 2011, 12:04:38 UTC

I'm sure this is just applicable to the US, but I'm wondering why this method of attracting funds hasn't been developed in other countries.

For instance, in the UK if SETI@home registered itself as a UK Charity, it would be able to utilise Gift Aid.

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/individuals/giving/gift-aid.htm

Whatever donations are currently made from the UK towards the project, if Gift Aid were claimed, the UK Government would send a cheque equal to the amount of Basic Income Tax paid on Individuals earning the money that they donate.

There must be similar schemes in other countries to support Charitable Giving.

If this has been discussed before, and explored in depth, and discarded as unviable, please ignore this post.
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Message 1113471 - Posted: 5 Jun 2011, 14:24:53 UTC

Nothing like what you describe in the US. The best we get is a tax deduction for our donations to Non-profits. There is no matching gift from the Government. From time to time some organizations do give matching grants. There have been some here for S@H and Berkeley over the years, nothing running currently.
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Message 1113479 - Posted: 5 Jun 2011, 14:35:16 UTC - in response to Message 1113451.  

I'm sure this is just applicable to the US, but I'm wondering why this method of attracting funds hasn't been developed in other countries.

For instance, in the UK if SETI@home registered itself as a UK Charity, it would be able to utilise Gift Aid.

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/individuals/giving/gift-aid.htm

Whatever donations are currently made from the UK towards the project, if Gift Aid were claimed, the UK Government would send a cheque equal to the amount of Basic Income Tax paid on Individuals earning the money that they donate.

There must be similar schemes in other countries to support Charitable Giving.

If this has been discussed before, and explored in depth, and discarded as unviable, please ignore this post.

It does appear as if the Regents of the University of California could apply ...
http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/cha1.pdf
But it also looks like they have to set up a bank account in England.

I don't know what their total donations from England are across all the campuses but perhaps it is enough for them to claim. In this day of budget crunch a little paperwork for free money can make sense. This is several layers above SETI. Perhaps the contact in the gift coordinator's office would know where to route this for the necessary public hearings.

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Message 1113584 - Posted: 5 Jun 2011, 20:28:12 UTC - in response to Message 1113471.  

Nothing like what you describe in the US. The best we get is a tax deduction for our donations to Non-profits. There is no matching gift from the Government. From time to time some organizations do give matching grants. There have been some here for S@H and Berkeley over the years, nothing running currently.


As I said I'm unsure of the tax system in the US, but here, everyone has their own allowance and then pay tax on anything earned above that. Gift Aid is the UK Government releasing the tax already paid by individuals, so effectively for every £1 donated, a charity would actually receive another 25 pence from the UK Government.

If SETI@home currently receives say £10,000 per annum from UK donations, by giving everyone a Gift Aid form to fill out, SETI would claim another £2,500 from the Inland Revenue per annum in Gift Aid.

Depends on the figures vs costs, and what hoops you'd have to jump through to be able to claim this.

What the tax systems might be like in countries other than the US/UK I've no idea, but they may support charitable giving in some way.
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Message 1113605 - Posted: 5 Jun 2011, 21:09:02 UTC - in response to Message 1113479.  

It does appear as if the Regents of the University of California could apply ...
http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/cha1.pdf
But it also looks like they have to set up a bank account in England.

I don't know what their total donations from England are across all the campuses but perhaps it is enough for them to claim. In this day of budget crunch a little paperwork for free money can make sense. This is several layers above SETI. Perhaps the contact in the gift coordinator's office would know where to route this for the necessary public hearings.


Yes, reading document CHA1 does indicate that a UK Tax Payer can make Gift Aid Donations to an Overseas Charity, I just don't know why SETI hasn't done this before.

Also, if there's an initial cost in setting up, this may be offset by being able to claim the previous several years of Gift Aid from previous Donations, as long as you keep records of which UK Tax Payer gave you what and when and can get them a form and claim the tax for those years.

I know this is the case because I was up until recently the Chairman of a local Scout Group, and we made a backdated claim for Gift Aid.

It is free money, what is SETI waiting for?

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Message 1113612 - Posted: 5 Jun 2011, 21:22:32 UTC

I've contacted the donors email at berkeley to indicate to them the contents of this thread.

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Message 1113698 - Posted: 6 Jun 2011, 1:57:19 UTC - in response to Message 1113612.  

I've contacted the donors email at berkeley to indicate to them the contents of this thread.

Hope something does come of it. However, http://www.ucop.edu/budget/rbudget/201112/2011-12-budget-summary.pdf I note that the University of California expects about $2,000,000,000.00 in gifts this year. I don't know what percent comes from England. If they had any recent large gifts [for a building or to endow a chair] I'm sure they would go after the extra %. Realize the SETI budget is so small compared to this as to be totally invisible. If you want UC to move it will have to be for some reason other than SETI.

If someone wants to go over the last couple of years of large donations to UC to see if there were any from England, then we might have an item of leverage to use. Several of us are California Residents and we can ask the embarrassing questions at a Regent's meeting about why they are leaving money on the table. It may be that UC doesn't qualify or that UC due to its quasi-governmental nature is forbidden from asking.

Once it is in place, then it becomes available to SETI. But not a finger will be lifted because of SETI.

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Message 1113777 - Posted: 6 Jun 2011, 7:44:51 UTC

Uli's sig says she is our cash donation specialist, and she is also a tax expert. I am sure if she could find the time to look into it, we'd know if it was possible. I just can't see UCB setting up a UK bank a/c just for UK donations to seti, nice though that would be.
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Message 1113783 - Posted: 6 Jun 2011, 8:08:41 UTC - in response to Message 1113777.  

Uli's sig says she is our cash donation specialist, and she is also a tax expert. I am sure if she could find the time to look into it, we'd know if it was possible. I just can't see UCB setting up a UK bank a/c just for UK donations to seti, nice though that would be.

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Message 1114423 - Posted: 8 Jun 2011, 0:48:20 UTC

Thanks for bringing this to my attention. I'm looking into it now to see how it's done. We did have at least one donation in the £10,000 range many years back, probably too many to be of use. Since most of our donations go through the credit card site, I'll have to check addresses to get a total for years past.

Why haven't we done it before? We were totally unaware of the existence of this program.
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Message 1114431 - Posted: 8 Jun 2011, 1:34:21 UTC

Eric,

To add Canada, http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/dnrs/rgltn/rgstrd5-eng.html I note that UC Berkley is already a qualified institution under Canadian Law.


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Message 1114548 - Posted: 8 Jun 2011, 12:48:56 UTC

No problem Eric, unless you're exposed to charity fundraising overseas you're unlikely to be aware of the efforts of the governments of other countries towards the gracious act of charitable giving, I'm sure we've opened a useful can of worms here, and that the funding might be easier to obtain than many have thought.

So we now know the situation in the US, UK, and Canada, there's guys from all over the World here, surely they can also chip in with details or links to similar schemes in their own countries.

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Message 1119537 - Posted: 21 Jun 2011, 0:01:35 UTC - in response to Message 1114431.  

To add Canada, http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/dnrs/rgltn/rgstrd5-eng.html I note that UC Berkley is already a qualified institution under Canadian Law.

Just to confirm that the theory has practical applications, so to speak: I received Canadian tax-deduction slips for my donations.
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Message 1119569 - Posted: 21 Jun 2011, 2:12:47 UTC

In Italy we can donate 5/1000 of our tax money to a no profit institution either health, support or research, but it must be registered and receive a fiscal code from the Economy Ministry. Then we put that code in our tax form and the Institution shall receive the money in due time.
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Message 1122472 - Posted: 28 Jun 2011, 14:59:51 UTC

I suppose 0.5% for free is better than a kick in the teeth.

Have we had any progress on SETI@home claiming these free monies from tax systems outside the US as yet, or does it need some sort of Committee decision on a way forward?

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Message 1122475 - Posted: 28 Jun 2011, 15:22:45 UTC

Eric said he would work on this issue and it will get done in due time.
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Message 1122498 - Posted: 28 Jun 2011, 21:30:38 UTC

Ok, thanks.
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Message boards : Cafe SETI : Tax Deductable?


 
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