Donate Your Car

Donate Your Car

Donate Your Car, the Procedure

June 11th, 2007 · No Comments ·

Determine the vehicle you need to donate. Charities accepting car donations accept anything from cars to trucks, motor homes, motorcycles, farm equipment, vans, boats, and recreational vehicles such as snowmobiles, jet skis, etc. The vehicle need not be in a running condition for it to be donated. It can be an old vehicle but the cost has to justify the cost of towing involved. If the towing cost is more than the money received through the sale or auction of the vehicle then it might not be accepted. Some organizations have a rule of accepting cars only which were manufactured before a particular year and are in an operational condition.  However, Acceptance depends on factors like the model, current condition, engine type, make and year of manufacture of the vehicle.

Check out websites or call up charities in your neighborhood to understand their process of car donations. Many organizations have online forms that need to be completed and then they would get back with a response. The response time can vary from 24 hours to a week depending on the location of the charity you have chosen to donate your vehicle to.

Once the donation has been confirmed by the charity, they would arrange for a pickup of the car within 24 hours to 5 days. They would instruct the local tow company to tow off your car depending on your convenience and time availability. Generally the vehicle is towed away by a professionally licensed, bonded and insured company and there is no tow fee to be paid Incase you would not be present when the tow trailer comes; you can talk to the person concerned for instructions on the procedure, title papers, key and tow receipts. It is advisable to be there when the vehicle is picked up so that misunderstandings and paperwork hassles in the future are avoided. After the car is towed, you will receive a tow receipt for the same for your records.

The car needs to be registered under the donor’s title for the charity to accept the Car Donation. Depending on the legal laws governing the state you reside in some organizations also require the cars smog certificate to accept the donation. In circumstances where you have lost the title deeds a duplicate needs to be obtained for the processing of the Car Donation.

The donor determines the Market value of the car depending on the car’s condition and informs the charity on the same. The car is then auctioned by the charity or sold for scrap.

The donor then receives an acknowledgement from the charity on the value his car has been sold for and also the IRS Form 1098 B & C for tax purposes if applicable.  If the value of the vehicle is over $500, then you would receive the certificate and if it’s sold for below then an acknowledgment is sent for the IRS.

For example if the donor decides on $1500 as the “Fair Market Value” of his car and the car is sold for $1000, then the donor can only deduct $1000 as the car’s price. But if the car is give in charity to a disadvantaged person, struggling family or another charity institution then the donor can deduct the complete “Fair Market Value” of $1500 for his car. 

Tags: 2 Procedure · Donate Your Car

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