You are here

May we give to individuals for vet care?

Your Legal Questions Answered

May we give to individuals for vet care?

As a 501(c)(3) organization, we give contributions to specific breed rescue groups to help pay for veterinary costs incurred while rescuing a purebred dog that meets our criteria. Most of the organizations are (c)(3)s. We often get requests from individuals who rescued a dog that meets the criteria for funding from us. These individuals are always members of our over 2000-member organization. Is it okay for us to give reimbursements for vet care to an individual/member?

I don’t see why not.  Charities must use their funds for charitable purposes but sometimes those purposes are carried out by non-charitable entities (such as the for-profit utility that uses funds to provide free service to those who can’t afford it) or by individuals (such as missionaries in foreign countries).  A donor may not get a deduction by giving directly to those non-charitable entities that carry out the work, but will get a deduction for giving to a charity that retains the discretion to determine how, and by whom, the work will be done.  As long as you are not funding so many of your members so that the organization looks more like a mutual insurance company than a charity, and so long as the grants are for the benefit of qualifying animals, I think you should be fine.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Add new comment

Sign-up for our weekly Q&A; get a free report on electioneering