Donations help people to lower their taxes?

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I was asked many times: if I help a church or a registered charity with volunteer work can I get some benefit from this?

A contribution of service, that is, of time, skills or efforts does not qualify as a gift or gift in kind for purposes of issuing official donation receipts.

If you made a gift of money or other property to certain institutions, you may be able to claim federal and provincial or territorial non-refundable tax credits when you file your income tax and benefit return, provided that you receive an official receipt from the institution(s).

For these qualified donations, you receive a 15% federal tax credit for the first $200of charitable donations and a 29% federal tax credit for amount over $200.

As you can see from this information you do not get back a big portion of the money donated and you get nothing if you just volunteer with your skills and time.

So when you want to help a charity, do it without thinking of a future saving.

For more information, see Pamphlet P113, Gifts and Income Tax[i] and Income Tax Technical News, Issue 26[ii].