Donee Tax Status of the Anglican Missions Board

Information about donations

11 June 2010

Recently there have been a number of enquiries asking whether donations made to the Anglican Missions Board (AMB) or to other overseas missions organisations qualify for a tax credit.  Currently AMB does not have Donee status so therefore any donations made by individuals to AMB directly do not qualify for a tax credit.

Discussions are underway with the Inland Revenue Department on this issue and the paper recently produced by The Inter Church Working Party on Taxation relating to Donee Status and Overseas Purposes will be a valuable resource to enable AMB to make progress in this complex and often misunderstood area. In the meantime the following describes (As AMB currently understands it) the current status of the most common types of donations received by Parishes and AMB.

General donations made by individuals to their local Parish qualify for a tax credit even if the Parish makes a contribution to AMB or any other Overseas Mission provided that the amount given by the Parish to go overseas does not exceed 50% of the funds received by the Parish. The key point is that the Parish makes the decision as to the contribution to overseas mission, not the individual.

Donations made by individuals which are “tagged” by the individual for a specific overseas purpose will only qualify for a tax credit if the overseas purpose qualifies for Donee status. The tax credit receipt will need to be issued by the qualifying organisation as they are the true recipients of the funds. A receipt can be issued by the Parish providing it clearly says it is not a qualifying tax credit receipt.

There are many other ways in which individuals send money through AMB for a variety of overseas purposes and these will all be discussed with the IRD to get clarity on the approach to use.  It can take up to two years to get Donee status approval for funds donated for overseas purposes. This is because it involves IRD, the Minister of Revenue, Cabinet and ultimately Parliamentary approval.

However AMB are discussing the possibility of general donations made by individuals directly to AMB being able to qualify for a tax credit if the funds are ultimately spent in New Zealand. This is consistent with the approach that a number of other Church organisations similar to AMB are taking.

AMB will continue to keep the church informed on this issue as discussions with the IRD reach a conclusion. In the meantime if you have any specific enquiries please contact Glen Williams at the Anglican Missions Board on telephone 04 473-5172 or email glen@angmissions.org.nz.