Today TaxMama® hears from Josh in the TaxQuips Forum with this interesting question, let me re-phrase. “I want to raise money for a family member who is ill, using crowd-funding. What’s the best way to do this with the least tax impact?”
That is very kind of you. But the way you describe will hold YOU responsible for the income. You will get no deduction for the ‘donation’ to the family member.
Have this person open up a new bank account specifically to receive these funds. It must be in their own name and Social Security number. You may be co-signer on the account. You may not use the funds for your own benefit. Be very careful about that.
Medical crowdfunding sites specify that the donors will NOT get a deduction for
these donations. They are purely voluntary, as gifts. Your family member will not have to pay taxes on the funds.
Be sure that nothing is promised to the donors – no kinds of rewards or anything for their donations – or this could be turned into ‘sales’. Instead, as incentive, let them know that you, or the individual, will be posting updates and photos about his/her condition, mood, etc. And let them know where to find the updates – FaceBook, a WordPress site,
Blogger, etc. (all of them are free). FaceBook requires a login to use. The others don’t.
This is an interesting way for people to get help. And while the donations are not deductible, it’s a great way to help people you care about.
And remember, you can find answers to all kinds of questions about crowdfunding and other tax and business issues, free. Where? Where else? At www.TaxMama.com.
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