Resource CenterFinancial Assistance For Individuals With DisabilitiesFundraising For Uninsured ExpensesFundraising Words of Caution

1.1. Fundraising Words of Caution

Personal Fundraising Words of Caution

Donations that are given directly to an individual and not through a registered charity are not tax deductible.

Be sure to let people know at the outset that any donation they make is going to an individual and not to a non-profit organization and therefore there is no tax benefit for them. If at all possible, try to locate a non-profit organization who will fund raise and receive donations on your behalf. By doing so, donors may receive a tax benefit, but please check your state's tax laws.

Most non-profits are aware of the tax laws and can guide you on this issue. Your area probably has a number of non profit foundations and community organizations that have experience in helping individuals raise funds. Try to locate one of these organizations.


Here is some personal fundraising advice from the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office. Your state is probably similar but please check with your state's Attorney General's Office prior to undertaking a personal fundraising campaign.

"Fundraising for a specific individual is not considered to be charitable fundraising, since the public at large does not benefit. Therefore, fundraising for a specified individual is not subject to the registration and filing requirements imposed on charitable organizations. No matter what you choose to call your fundraising activity, it is not considered a charitable activity if it benefits only a specific individual or individuals. Donors to your fundraising campaign are essentially making a gift to the beneficiary."


If your personal fundraising efforts include raffle tickets, a lottery, or games of chance, you should definately check with your state's Attorney General's Office and Internal revenue service. Most states have very strict laws regarding these types of activities.

This page was: Helpful | Not Helpful