Chapter OneCharitable Giving Law: Basic Concepts

  1. § 1.1 Introduction to the Charitable Contribution Deduction
  2. § 1.2 Defining Tax-Exempt Organizations
  3. § 1.3 Principles of Charitable Organizations Law Philosophy
    1. (a) Public Policy and National Heritage
    2. (b) Other Rationales
    3. (c) Freedom of Association
  4. § 1.4 Statistical Profile of Charitable Sector
  5. § 1.5 Categories of Tax-Exempt Organizations

The purpose of this book is to summarize and analyze the law of charitable giving. For the most part, this law consists of federal tax law requirements, although state law can be implicated. The law of charitable giving frequently interrelates with the laws concerning tax-exempt status and public charity/private foundation classification of charitable organizations.

§ 1.1 Introduction to the Charitable Contribution Deduction

The charitable contribution is the subject of extensive law. On the face of it, a charitable gift is a rather simple matter, requiring merely a gift and a charitable recipient. Though these elements are crucial (and are discussed throughout these pages), they by no means constitute the whole of the subject. Far more is involved in determining the availability and amount of the charitable contribution deduction.

There are, in fact, several charitable contribution deductions in American law, including three at the federal level: one for the income tax, one for the estate tax, and one for the gift tax. Most states have at least one form of charitable deduction, as do many ...

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