HMRC has published its updated guidance notes on Gift Aid declarations and provided new model declarations. HMRC have added a new checklist of the minimum information to be included in a declaration if a charity decides to create and use its own declaration form.
The new HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) Charities Gift Aid declaration form and guidance notes came into effect in late February 2012 and charities have until 31 December 2012 to comply.
Charities should be aware of the two key changes which are:
• Donors must now confirm that they will pay enough tax to cover all the donations they plan to make that year. Previously, donors were required to confirm that they would pay enough tax to cover the gift referred to on the form.
• Records need to be kept for at least six years, instead of four years. If, however, based on previous guidance, charities have destroyed records previous to this, they will not be penalised for not having the full six year’s worth of records.
Gift Aid is a Government scheme which allows charities to reclaim the basic rate of tax paid by donors on donations. This can be applied to any amount of money, large or small, regular or one-off, providing that the donor is a taxpayer, and that a Gift Aid Declaration is received.
This Declaration will usually either cover ongoing donations, or it will cover a one-off donation. Currently 25p for every £1 is donated under Gift Aid.
For further information, visit: www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/gift_aid/declarations.htm.