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Q&A: How Should Items Donated for a Silent Auction Be Treated for Tax Purposes?

Items donated to a silent auction are treated the same as other noncash contributions to the church.

Last Reviewed: August 18, 2021
Q&A: How Should Items Donated for a Silent Auction Be Treated for Tax Purposes?
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My church is planning a silent auction to raise money for a missions trip. What should we say to potential donors to help them understand any tax implications for their donations—whether it involves a donated item, a service, or, say, the use of a vacation cottage for a week?

Items donated to a silent auction are treated the same as other noncash contributions to the church. Under current federal tax law, donors are responsible for determining the value of their noncash gifts and the proper amounts to deduct as a charitable contribution. Unfortunately, no charitable contribution deduction is allowed for donated services or for a gift of the right to use property (such as the use of a vacation cottage).

Donors who contribute noncash items valued at more than $500 must generally file a Form 8283 with their tax return. Depending upon the type of item contributed and the amount claimed as ...

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Posted:
  • October 13, 2017
  • Last Reviewed: August 18, 2021

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