Everything you need to know about Gift Aid
What is Gift Aid?
Gift Aid is a government scheme that allows us to reclaim the basic rate tax you pay as a UK taxpayer.
It means that for every £1 you donate we can claim an extra 25p of tax at no extra cost to you. All that is needed is a one-off declaration.
You can give this by ticking the Gift Aid box when you make a donation online. You can also give it by completing a declaration form or by making an oral declaration over the phone.
- Call 0300 456 1155 to make an oral declaration
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like us to send you a paper form
Once completed, all you need to remember is to let us know of any changes to your tax status, including changes to your name and address.
Which gifts qualify for Gift Aid?
Gift Aid can be applied to all voluntary donations of money, large or small, providing they are made by an individual who pays sufficient UK tax.
Your declaration will cover all cash, cheque, postal order, Direct Debit, standing order and credit or debit card donations.
It will not be applied to donations received from tax efficient payment schemes. These include Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) payments or payroll gifts, as tax relief has already been claimed.
Do I qualify for Gift Aid?
To qualify for Gift Aid:
- you need to be a UK taxpayer
- you need to have paid or expect to pay enough income/capital gains tax in the tax year your gift was received to cover all the Gift Aid donations you made to charity that year
- you need to make a Gift Aid declaration
- if you are completing an enduring Gift Aid declaration, you also need to be sure you paid enough tax to cover the donations you made in the previous four years.
The basic rate of tax we claim is currently 20 per cent on the gross value of your gift (that’s the same as 25 per cent on the net).
You must remember to let us know if your tax status changes in the future, otherwise you could be liable for any shortfall.
Do I need to make a separate Gift Aid declaration to the British Red Cross to cover each tax year?
No, you only need to make a declaration once. We’ll keep this declaration as your enduring permission to claim Gift Aid tax relief on all donations. It will cover the previous four years, the current year, and any donations you might make to us in the future.
If you haven’t paid tax to cover your past donations or you stop paying tax in the future, please let us know as soon as possible, otherwise we’ll keep on claiming and this could result in us receiving tax relief we’re not entitled to, which could have implications for you.
If you have any questions, contact us by emailing email@example.com or calling 0300 456 1155.
What if I pay a higher rate of tax?
If you’re a higher rate taxpayer, we’re still only able to claim the basic rate of tax on your donation.
However, you can claim the difference between the 20 per cent we claim and the tax you pay when you submit your annual tax return.
What if I stop paying tax? Can I withdraw the declaration?
You can cancel the declaration at any time by emailing your full name and address, including your postcode, to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 0300 456 1155. Please do this as soon as possible
I’m a pensioner. Do my donations qualify?
Income from state pensions alone is unlikely to qualify as you’d need to earn above the personal allowance threshold to pay income tax.
If this is your only source of income, we advise that you check with your tax office before completing a declaration.
Is there any extra paperwork for me to complete?
No, but you may wish to keep a record of donations you make to charity in each tax year. This will help ensure that you continue to pay enough tax to cover the payments you make under Gift Aid.
Does my declaration cover all donations I’ve ever made to you?
We only have four years in which to claim the tax relief on your donations. If donations you’ve made go back further than four years, we’ll only apply the tax relief to donations within the allowed period.
Can I use Gift Aid for items donated to charity shops?
Gift aid is only available on donations of money, but our shops can convert your donations of goods to cash. You can then choose to donate this and apply Gift Aid.
Just ask about Gift Aid when you take your donated goods into your local shop.
When you bring donations to your nearest British Red Cross shop:
- ask about the Give and Gain loyalty card
- keep a copy of the agreement
- get your British Red Cross Give and Gain loyalty card, which will include your Gift Aid number
- present your Give and Gain card when you next donate goods.
As with all Gift Aid donations, we can only reclaim Gift Aid if you are a UK taxpayer who has paid sufficient tax in the tax year your gift was received.
See full Terms and Conditions of the Agency Agreement for claiming Gift Aid on the sale of donated goods.