What Is Charity?

Physician's Money Digest, March31 2004, Volume 11, Issue 6

It's important to remember that not all nonprofitorganizations qualify as charitable organizations.The IRS determines whether donations to an organizationare deductible. Generally, eligible organizationsoperate for one or more of the following purposes:charitable, educational, religious, scientific,literary, athletic, or animal rights.

If you're uncertain if an organization qualifies asa charitable organization, call the IRS forms line(800-829-3676) and request publication 526. You canalso check with the Independent Charities of America(800-477-0733; www.independentcharities.org),which prescreens and certifies quality charitable organizations.The National Charities Information Bureau(212-929-6300; www.give.org) is also a good source. Itcan provide you with information on administrativecosts for a wide variety of charities.