501(c)(3) Donation Receipt Template | Sample

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Updated June 03, 2022

A 501(c)(3) donation receipt is required to be completed by charitable organizations when receiving gifts in a value of $250 or more. It’s utilized by an individual that has donated cash or payment, personal property, or a vehicle and seeking to claim the donation as a tax deduction.

Often a receipt detailing the extent of all donations over the course of the year will be issued to provide the total annual contributions made by a single donor, the value of which can be deducted from their gross income.

Table of Contents

What is a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit?

A 501 (c)(3) is a type of organization or corporation classified as a charity that’s able to accept charitable contributions. Contributions given to a 501(c)(3) are tax-deductible when given before the close of the tax year. A pledge or promise to pay does not count.

All 501(c)(3) organizations must be approved by the IRS under a rigorous approval process. If an organization is certified 501(c)(3), as most well-known charitable organizations are, it’s safe to give a donation knowing that it can be tax-deductible.

Most Popular Charities

Click on the following charity to download their donation receipt:

501(c)(3) Receipt Requirements

In accordance with Page 2 of IRS Publication 1771 the receipt must contain the following:

  • Name of the Charity;
  • Date of Contribution; and
  • Amount ($) of the Contribution.
  • Acknowledgment of “no goods or services were provided as part of this donation.”

No Goods or Service Provided

No payments made for goods or services can be deducted from a donor’s taxes even if the payment was made to a 501(c)(3) organization.

For example, if a person is going to a dinner event for a charity, the fee for the dinner may not be used as a tax deduction. Although, if a separate cash donation is made at the dinner, that amount may be deducted.

Less than $250

Any single instance where a donation is made up to $250 does not need a receipt. Under this rule, a person may make ten (10) trips to donate clothes and claim it as a tax deduction without proof or a receipt. Once the amount, for any donation, reaches $250 or more, a receipt is required. (26 U.S. Code § 175(f)(8)(A))

More than $500

If the donation is more than $500, the donation must be described in full. (26 U.S. Code § 175(f)(11)(B))

More than $5,000

If the donation value is more than $5,000, the property must be assessed by a “qualified appraiser.” This is not defined although the donor is advised to use their best judgment. (26 U.S. Code § 175(f)(8)(C))

Maximum Tax Deduction

An individual may deduct up to 50% of their adjusted gross income (line 36 on IRS Form 1040 Schedule 1). (26 U.S. Code § 170(b)(1)(B))

501(c)(3) Charity Lookup

Before any donor makes patronage to a non-profit organization, it’s imperative that the entity that is receiving the funds is classified as a 501(c)(3) by the IRS. If not, the donor may not be liable to deduct the amount from their tax return at the end of the year.

Two (2) Options

Step 1 – Go to the IRS Website

Go to the IRS Website and click the dark blue button titled ‘Tax Exempt Organization Search‘ (EOS App).

Step 2 – Type the Name of the Entity

Perform a lookup by Organization Name or the Employer Identification Number. If the organization is nationwide and has local associations, use the location filters to specify by State or City.

Step 3 – View Listings

Just because an organization appears on the search results does not mean the organization is a verified 501(c)(3) organization. The entity name must be clicked and its status with the IRS will appear.

The statement “On Publication 78 Data List: Yes” must be listed to confirm the entity’s non-profit status.

Sample – 501(c)(3) Donation Receipt



Date: March 14, 2019

Name of the Non-Profit Organization: Goodwill Industries of Northern New England

EIN: 01-0284340



Donor’s Name: John Roberts

Donor’s Mailing Address: 123 Monroe Way, Apple Valley, CA 92307

Donation Value: $760.00

Donation Description: 3 winter coats, 42″ Plasma TV (in working order), 3 chairs, and 1 large couch.

I, the undersigned representative, declare (or certify, verify, or state) under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America that there were no goods or services provided as part of this donation. Furthermore, as of the date of this receipt the above-mentioned organization is a current and valid 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in accordance with the standards and regulations of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).




Thank you for your generosity. We appreciate your support!

How to Write

Download: Adobe PDF, MS Word (.docx), OpenDocument (.odt)

I. Donation Header Information

(1) Date. It will be important for the books that the exact calendar date defining when this donation was received by the 501(c)(3) Organization is clearly presented. In fact, this must be the first piece of information reported on this receipt. Furnish the date when this receipt is completed where requested at the start of this receipt.

(2) Non-Profit Organization. The Non-Profit Organization that possesses 501(c)(3) status must be identified. Its entire legal name must be dispensed in the receipt header. This must be the approved name of the Non-Profit Organization as recorded with Government Entities such as the I.R.S., the State where it was formed, and the Federal Government.

(3) Mailing Address. The name of 501(c)(3) Organization that has been submitted above must be accompanied by its official mailing address. Document the permanent mailing address of the Non-Profit Organization that has received the donation being discussed.

(4) EIN. The Entity Identification Number that has been assigned to the Non-Profit Organization (by the I.R.S.) is required by this receipt. This header information must be produced accurately since Reviewers will use this information to identify the Recipient of the tax-free donation that has been made.

II. Donor Information

(5) Donor’s Name. In addition to identifying the Tax-Free Donation Recipient, the Donor of this amount must be displayed by recording his or her (legal) name at the beginning of the “Donor Information” section.

(6) Donor’s Address. The Donor’s address is also a necessity for this paperwork. His or her home address (or if an Entity, its Business Address), should be documented as a support to his or her identity and as a potential requirement for tax forms or inquiries where this donation is examined.

III. Donation Information

(7) Donated Amount. The amount of money that has been donated to the Non-Profit or the value of the donation at the time it was received by the Non-Profit must be documented. Present this dollar value in its written form then report it (numerically) to the space attached to the dollar sign.

(8) Donation Description. The type of donation made will bear discussion for this receipt. Popular methods utilized by Donors will be to submit the donation as cash, a personal check, a wire transfer, or an online venue. Any method that was used to submit the dollar amount of the donation must be described. Similarly, if the dollar amount above refers to a product donation (i.e. the current blue book value of an automobile) then the product must be described. For instance, in our example of an automobile that was donated to the Non-Profit Organization, the manufacturer, make, model, VIN (vehicle identification number), odometer reading, color and year of the donated vehicle should be used as a description of how the donated amount was received.

IV. Representative Acknowledgement

(9) Representative Signature. The Representative of the Non-Profit 501(c)(3) Organization who can verify that the Donor’s submission has been received must acknowledge the information on this receipt as true by signing his or her name on behalf of the concerned Non-Profit Organization

(10) Representative’s Name. Once he or she has acknowledged the receipt information above by signature, the Representative must print his or her name.

(11) Title. Since the Representative is acting on behalf of an Entity, the title he or she holds with the 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization must be documented.

(12) Date. Finally, the calendar date when the Non-Profit Representative has signed this document should be presented. This date must be the same date as the Representative’s signature and thus may not be before the date of this receipt.