Donating used cars is now a very popular method for getting rid of older vehicles that you no longer want. There are many charities that you can help by donating your car to them, just search on “Illinois car donation charity” in your favorite search engine to find a large list of charities.
For any donation, you should go through the following quick checklist.
- Check out the Charity
- If you want to claim a deduction for the donation, you should make certain the charity is a qualified organization. You can use the “EO Select Check” tool on the IRS website at Charities-&-Non-Profits/ Exempt-Organizations-Select-Check
- See if you’ll get a tax benefit
- You can deduct contributions to charity only if you itemize deductions on the Schedule A section of Form 1040.
- Check the value of your vehicle
- The amount you may deduct for a vehicle contribution depends on what the charity does with the vehicle as reported in the written acknowledgment you receive from the charity.
- See what your responsibilities are as a donor to a charity
Donating in Illinois
There are more than 25,000 legitimate charitable organizations registered with the Office of the Illinois Attorney General. If you would like to learn more about any of these organizations you may contact the Charitable Trust Bureau at (312)-814-2595. There are no Illinois specific forms when donating a vehicle. However, be sure to keep a copy of your title when you've signed it over and review the federal tax regulations.
Frequently asked questions
- What can I donate?
- Most charities will accept cars, trucks, vans, boats and more. Please check with your charity to be sure.
- Does my vehicle need to work?
- Usually, your vehicle does not need to be in working order.
- Will the charity come get my vehicle?
- Many charities will pick up your vehicle. However, you will need to find out before you make the donation.
- Is my donation tax deductible?
- It primarily depends on the tax status of the charity organization. You can use the “EO Select Check” tool on the IRS website at Charities-&-Non-Profits/Exempt-Organizations-Select-Check
- What happens to my vehicle?
- Depending on the vehicle’s condition, it may be used by the organization for transportation, it may be sold as is, it may be sold for scrap metal, or they may find other uses for it.
Federal guidelines for vehicle donations can be found in this pdf file https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p4303.pdf.