About Vehicle Donations for the Poor

By Bill Herrfeldt

  • Overview

    There is a car dealer that will sell you your dream car for less money than you ever imagined. But first, you need to find a way to dispose of your old car. You can sell it yourself, but the expense of advertising and readying it for sale will cut into the proceeds. Or you can trade it in, but you'll receive only a fraction of what it is worth. Do what many of your neighbors have done and donate it to the vehicle-donation program through Donation Line, which serves Answering The Cry of The Poor (ANCOP).
  • Significance

    Donation Line will gladly pick up your car, regardless of its condition, no matter where you live: The service is provided in all 50 states. They will auction the car if it still runs, or dismantle it if it doesn't, then give the proceeds to to ANCOP, which will use the funds for the benefit of the poor.
  • Prevention/Solution

    Before 2005, to get a tax deduction, you only had to estimate the value of a car you gave to Donation Line. But as people were declaring amounts in excess of what their cars were worth, you are now limited to $500, or the price Donation Line actually sold the car for. To deduct more than $500, you need written verification from Donation Line of the sale. Since the change went into effect, charities have been receiving about 1/3 fewer cars than they did before. This was a huge blow to the ANCOP, because it relies heavily on those funds for the benefit of this nation's poor.

  • Benefits

    While the tax deduction you receive from your donation is valuable, remember that the primary reason for the gift is so that ANCOP can continue to help the poor. Second, since you will be dealing directly with Donation Line, you can be sure the organization will receive the most from your donation, because it is one of the largest auto-donation programs in this country. .
  • Warning

    Some charities may ask you to sign over your automobile in blank to facilitate the transaction by not making them re-title your car. Unfortunately, you could be responsible for crimes that are later committed that involve the car, or for traffic tickets, after you have long forgotten your gift to the charity. The Donation Line recognizes this problem and will provide a bona fide bill of sale.
  • Potential

    Donating your car to poor through ANCOP allows you to make a real difference by supporting valuable research into the causes (and potential cure) of AIDS. You receive a tax deduction, free towing of your car and a sense of satisfaction of that you are contributing to the betterment of society.

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