Nonprofit Law/Horse donation


I donated my horse to an equine therapy group. I make monthly donations to pay for her board, feed, insurance and vet care. Are these donations deductible and was the value of the horse deductible? The non-profit has told me the above expenses will increase by 30% next year. Are they allowed to bill me for the increase and can I deduct what I pay/donate?
Thank you for your time!

The IRS has written on page 1 (first column under "Introduction")
in their publication 526 "Charitable Donations", which is available
at: "A charitable contribution is
a donation or gift to, or for the use of, a qualified organization.
It is voluntary and is made without getting, or expecting to get,
anything of equal value."

That conclusion is supported by  Singer Co. v. United States, 449
F.2d 413, 418, 196 Ct.Cl. 90 (1971), citing to a House Report

In an Internal Memorandum from the year 2000,"Fund Raising Issues"
the IRS explained further, "where a payment is made in return for
an item or benefit, the presumption is that such payment is the
purchase price and not a gift." on page 12

If the organization is "billing" you, then it appears that the arrangement that you have with them is not voluntary.  But, if it is, in fact, voluntary and the organization is a qualified 501(c)(3) organization, the the payment is deductible as a charitable donation and the value of the horse at the time of the donation is also deductible, if the same situation exists there.

Harvey Mechanic
Attorney at Law

P.S. This response is intended to be a general statement of law, should not be relied upon as legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. For me to consider your individual situation and how the law applies, I would need to gather more information.

Nonprofit Law

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Harvey Mechanic


DO NOT GIVE ME INFORMATION THAT YOU WANT KEPT CONFIDENTIAL. I am an attorney and I volunteer time to answer general questions about U.S. Federal income tax issues of nonprofit 501(c)(3) public charities only. Those questions could be about establishing and maintaining legal requirements for such non-profit organizations in the United States, including Internal Revenue service filings and requirements. I will not be working on this free forum to answer questions about Nonprofit's possible unrelated or for-profit businesses or how to fill out forms. This forum is only for general questions about federal tax law, not as the law applies to your specific situation. If you do not make your question public then I will not be spending much of my donated time on answers that would not benefit the public. If you have other questions, please contact me at I will reply from my email. In any case, do not reveal confidential information to me until after I have contracted with you to provide personal legal services. My responses on this forum are intended to be general statements of law, should not be relied upon as legal advice, and do not create an attorney/client relationship. For me to consider your individual situation and how the law applies, I would need to gather extensive information about the situation. To search my previous answers you can do a Google search by "" without the quotes and then add your search terms before hitting enter.


I have been practicing law and especially the law of nonprofit organizations since 1990 when I was admitted to the New York Bar and I have maintained my status with the Bar since that time.


B.S. Columbia University in New York City, 1970

J.D. (Law Degree) Brooklyn Law School, 1990 -- Cum Laude.

©2017 All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]