How to Make Charitable Gifts With an IRA

Older adults who want to make charitable gifts can get a tax break by making a qualified charitable distribution from an IRA.

jar with paper money inside labeled charity
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Many Americans donate to charity each year. Knowing that the money can help an organization that is near and dear to your heart helps you feel warm and fuzzy inside. Getting a federal tax break for the contribution might be an added bonus. 

However, these days, most people who donate can’t write off their gifts. That’s because only individuals who itemize deductions on Schedule A of Form 1040 can deduct charitable contributions. And fewer people are itemizing each year because of higher standard deductions. Only 11.6% of federal tax returns for 2021 claimed itemized deductions.

Subscribe to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance

Be a smarter, better informed investor.

Save up to 74%

Sign up for Kiplinger’s Free E-Newsletters

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice on investing, taxes, retirement, personal finance and more - straight to your e-mail.

Profit and prosper with the best of expert advice - straight to your e-mail.

Sign up

To continue reading this article
please register for free

This is different from signing in to your print subscription

Why am I seeing this? Find out more here

Joy Taylor
Editor, The Kiplinger Tax Letter

Joy is an experienced CPA and tax attorney with an L.L.M. in Taxation from New York University School of Law. After many years working for big law and accounting firms, Joy saw the light and now puts her education, legal experience and in-depth knowledge of federal tax law to use writing for Kiplinger. She writes and edits The Kiplinger Tax Letter and contributes federal tax and retirement stories to and Kiplinger’s Retirement Report. Her articles have been picked up by the Washington Post and other media outlets. Joy has also appeared as a tax expert in newspapers, on television and on radio discussing federal tax developments.