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Tax News
Haiti Donations Are Immediately Tax-Deductible

We announced that a new state law allows taxpayers to immediately deduct their donations made to provide relief for the January 12 Haitian earthquake victims.

Charitable deductions are normally taken on a tax return for the taxable year the donation is made. Those returns are filed in the following calendar year. The new law gives donating taxpayers the option to claim these specific charitable contribution deductions made before March 1, 2010, immediately on their 2009 returns instead of waiting to claim it on their 2010 returns.

To claim the charitable deduction on the 2009 tax return, both individuals and businesses must have made the Haitian-relief contributions to qualified charities after January 11, 2010, and before March 1, 2010. Only cash contributions such as those made by text message, check, credit card, or debit card qualify. The contributions must be made specifically for the relief of victims in areas affected by the January 12, 2010, earthquake in Haiti.

The new legislation, Assembly Bill 347 (Stats 2010, Ch. 8), conforms to similar federal law (Haitian Relief Bill H.R. 4462; P.L. 111-126).

To find more information about this year's state tax rules, go to ftb.ca.gov.

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