June 19, 2009, Newsletter Issue #154: When to Deduct Fair Market Value on Your Donated RV

Tip of the Week

When you donate an RV, be careful if the charity says you can use the RV's full value or fair market value as your tax write-off. Generally, the IRS only allows the used vehicle's fair market value if the charity plans to use the vehicle in its charitable work.
The other exception is if the charity "materially improve(s)" the donated vehicle, the donor can deduct its fair market value.
The IRS rules on these exceptions are detailed, so donors may want to get advice from an accountant. Another resource is the free IRS Publication 4302, "A Charity's Guide to Vehicle Donations," covering cars, RVs, boats and airplanes. When in doubt, visit the IRS' website for more information.

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