Watch out for one of the biggest and most pervasive scam around…
No, I am not talking about the IRS impersonators who threaten you with arrest unless you pay up. So what is this big, long time scam?
The answer is phony charities. We all get calls from charitable organizations asking for money. Sadly, there are many bogus charities that solicit as well. Even worse, they usually adopt similar names to real charities. So how do you know who do donate to?
First, NEVER, EVER donate to a charity over the phone! Even if the charity is real, charities pays these solicitors a huge amount of the funds received for their work. It isn’t uncommon to pay these people 70% or MORE of the funds they receive from the soliciting organization. Contacting the charity directly and sending them a check is MUCH more economical.
Secondly, before you donate to a charity, Go to IRS. org and use their “Tax Exempt Organization ” search. This will help ensure that your donation will be tax deductible, and that the charity is a real, reputable charity.
Third, If you are 70.5 or older, consider making a donation from your IRA. You can transfer up to $100,000 annually from a traditional IRA to a charity tax free. While you won’t get a deduction for this donation, you won’t be taxed on the direct transfer to the charity yet this donation counts as part of your minimum required distribution.
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