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Car donation

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Car donation

Postby Kay » Mon 12 Dec 2011 10:52 GMT

In the course of doing something else, I stumbled across the subject of car donation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car_donation

At first glance it seems like a nice thing to do - give your old and unwanted car to a charity. On closer inspection, it seems more as though it's commonly used for tax avoidance in the US.

I dunno, when we had good stuff to give away in the UK, some of the charities turned their noses up at it for one reason or another. We ended up having to take perfectly good stuff to the dump - and add to the landfill problem.

I think recycling is great and don't like to see things discarded if someone could find a use for them. If charities can benefit from donations of old cars and the donors get some tax advantage, then what's the harm? Or is it not that simple?

(Maybe I should have posted this in Ops/Pol. Let's see how it goes, I can shift it later if necessary.)
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Postby Graeme » Mon 12 Dec 2011 15:02 GMT

Car donation can be a win-win situation in the USA as the amount donated can be written off against individual taxes. The car owner gets an inflated (full blue book value) for the vehicle and the joy of donating it to his favourite charity, the charity gets the vehicle which they sell on for about $1,000 for scrap and parts. Since the donation amount is just on paper no money changes hands and the vehicle owner gets some money off his taxes later in the year. When it works out it's a good idea, of course there are some problems. Overall I'm in favour of it when we get to recylce these hunks of junk and get them off private land, and if the charity makes a little bit too, where's the problem.
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Postby Dave » Tue 13 Dec 2011 08:19 GMT

It's an interesting idea, but I think there might be serious obstacles to it in the UK and elsewhere in the EU if you're talking about cars that are still roadworthy. As I understand it, Brussels were bringing in regulations that meant cars more than 15 years old have to be scrapped unless they're of particular "collectors' item" value - which presumably means you have to apply for an exemption to avoid having to scrap it.

Even with cars that are being donated for scrap, there's always going to be a risk that the scrap value isn't enough to cover the costs of scrapping it - especially with growing green regulation of the scrapping process.

I suppose it's always possible that the charity might be able to export the cars for use elsewhere, but then there's the shipping cost and the import duty to be paid at the other end.

But yes, if the charity benefits and the owner gets a problem off her hands (or money off taxes) then everyone should be happy.
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Postby Kay » Tue 13 Dec 2011 08:57 GMT

From the Wiki article linked above:

This type of donation has become increasingly widespread; in 2000, 733,000 U.S. taxpayers reduced their taxes by $654 million.


That's $654 million the tax man missed out on, and that money might have been better spent in other ways rather than reducing some people's tax bills.
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Postby Graeme » Tue 13 Dec 2011 15:01 GMT

That's less than a $1000 each and overall compared to the US GNP a drop in the bucket. and it gets 733,000 pieces of junk off the road, out of the woods and fields, away from the slums etc and the vast majority is recycled. Still a pretty good win-win I reckon.
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Postby julie298 » Mon 30 Jan 2012 17:39 GMT

Hello everyone, I am an idiot who is based in Mymensingh in Bangladesh. It seemed like a good idea to come onto this forum and crap a few links about car donation, because I know it's a lucrative keyword for making money online.

Unfortunately, I didn't realise that there's a Rottweiler on this forum as well as several very vigilant admins so now I'm toast.

Thank you for my brief visit here before I got banned. I shall try to spam an easier target next time, where the admins/mods are as stupid as I am.

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Postby danjones080 » Mon 12 Mar 2012 11:43 GMT

Well I agree with Graeme that car donation is a pretty big win-win for everyone and that a lot of junk can be cleared off. Over time I think there has become too much room for skimming over the top. This has been distasteful for many and so they have started steering clear of charity itself. I hope that corruption and thievery can be cleared out of charity at least.

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Postby Dave » Mon 12 Mar 2012 13:54 GMT

If only thievery like the two posts immediately above could be cleared out of the link building industry. That's quite distasteful. :vomit:
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