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Tips for Maximizing Charitable Donations

Did you give to charity this holiday season? Or, are you planning to give in the New Year?

Do you claim your donations as part of your tax return every year?

Remember the following tips when making charitable donations:

  1. Make sure a charity is registered and eligible to issue donation receipts. This can be done by doing a simple internet search of the charities listing through CRA.
  2. Keep all your official donation receipts.
  3. If possible, keep proof of payments as well (credit card slips, bank statements).
  4. Ask to see if you are eligible for the “First time Donor’s Super Credit” (see below).
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A frequently asked question about making donations:

Do I have to claim donations in the same year I make them?

No- you can carry forward any unclaimed donations for up to five years. (But-you have to claim donations you carried forward from a previous year, before you claim donations made in the current year.)

First time donor!

Have you heard about the “First Time Donor’s Super Credit”? This “FDSC” supplements the value of the charitable donations tax credit (CDTC) by 25% on donations made after March 20, 2013 by first time donors. Ask us if this “super” credit applies to you.

Some ideas of charities to give to:

1. Give close to home! Donate to your local schools, churches, hospitals, food banks, animal shelters, etc!

2. Donate to a Canadian Charity.

Moneysense provides some good ideas for donating within Canada. They grade the 100 biggest Canadian charities, and give information about which of these charities manage to raise and distribute funds most efficiently, demonstrate best practice for governance, and are transparent with their donors.

3. Or, donate internationally! There are many very worthwhile causes that help people around the world- just make sure to do your research to ensure it is a legitimate organization.

Happy Giving this holiday season!

Let us know if you have any questions when claiming your charitable donations at tax time!

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