Did you receive a Form 1098-C, including a COPY B, from the charity?
In order to claim a deduction on your 2007 Schedule A of more than $500.00 for donating a motor vehicle (car, motorcycle, boat, or airplane) to charity, you must attach to your Form 8283 Copy B of IRS Form 1098-C!
The Form 1098-C will include the name and Taxpayer Identification Number of the charity, the vehicle identification number of the auto, and the date of contribution. Form 1098-C must be given to you within 30 days of either the date of the contribution or the date of the disposition of the vehicle (i.e. sale) by the charity. The Form 1098-C will also include additional information depending on what the charity does with the donated car, and this information will determine what you are allowed to deduct.
If you have not yet received a COPY B of Form 1098-C, from the charity give them a call and ask when they will be mailing it to you. It is possible that the car you donated has not yet been sold, especially if donated late in the year, so all the necessary information is not yet available.
If you have received a Form 1098-C, but it does not include a copy identified as COPY B (you are sent a COPY A and/or COPY C, but no COPY B), call the charity and tell them that you need them to send you a COPY B.
I recommend being a pest, and continuing to call the charity and bother them until you get a COPY B of Form 1098-C in your hand.
The charity can give you a statement in lieu of a Form 1098-C as long as it contains all the necessary information – the same information that would be included on a 1098-C – a copy of which can be attached to your 2007 tax return instead of the 1098-C. However, as a preparer I would much prefer to attach an actual COPY B of a Form 1098-C to the return instead of a statement – just to be safe.
I know that “Sam” has been inflexible in the past regarding attaching the requested COPY B of a Form W-2 to the tax return. So I expect that “he” will be just as inflexible with the requirement for attaching COPY B of the Form 1098-C, even though a COPY A, C or D will have the exact same information.
BTW, I have written a special report on DEDUCTING CONTRIBUTIONS: ALMOST EVERYTHING YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT DEDUCTING CONTRIBUTIONS ON YOUR 2007 TAX RETURN. Click here for more information.