March 28, 2007

Charitable Donation Denied for Lack of Substantiation

In 2003, the Taxpayers introduced receipts indicating they donated clothing and other miscellaneous goods eight times in 2003. These receipts do not list the specific items contributed and simply note that petitioners donated a certain number of bags. Taxpayers also introduced a worksheet they prepared when preparing their tax return that purports to list and value more specifically the items petitioners contributed. Taxpayers estimated the value of the clothing they donated at one-half the original cost but also admitted he did not think used clothing was worth half as much as it was worth new. Taxpayers did not introduce any evidence supporting their estimated value or regarding the quality of the donated items that would permit IRS to estimate its value.

While the Tax Court was convinced that taxpayers donated property to charity in 2003, taxpayers failed to provide any reliable evidence of the items they donated or their values. Taxpayers are therefore not entitled to deduct any additional amount for charitable contributions of property.

James A. Soholt et ux. v. Commissioner; T.C. Summ.