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Is The Value Of Volunteer Time Tax Deductible?

Published: 10/11/2016
By: larry

A calculator, pen, and financial statement.Jeff in Colorado asks:

I was approached today by an interior designer who has volunteered their time to design a lounge area for a non-profit therapeutic center.  I was thinking about volunteering my photographic services too, but was wondering if I can write it off somehow?

First of all for a definitive answer to tax law questions you should consult an accounting professional.

My research indicates that the answer is no. If you provide professional services for free to a qualifying nonprofit organization, you cannot claim a tax deduction for the value of your time or services on your income taxes, according to IRS Publication 526: Charitable Contributions (see the section, "Contributions You Cannot Deduct").

I believe that you could deduct any expenses that you incurred to shoot the therapeutic center, though.

3 comments on “Is The Value Of Volunteer Time Tax Deductible?”

  1. Don't believe you can. You would have to bill them for your services, then right off the receivable. Net result is 0.

    I would feel fairly cofident that you can write off your business expenses under normal rules. But an accountant is always your best friend.

  2. I volunteer weekly with my certified Therapy dog at a treatment center for abused/neglected/juvenile delinquents/traumatized teens. I am able to write off my mileage and any expenses I incur that directly relate to the visit such as pet grooming, meals, insurance I pay for on my pet. I am not able to write off my time. So if you volunteered your services, you would be able to write off your milage and any prints, any special equipment you had to purchase expressly for the volunteering and more but not your time.

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