Donating through Gift Aid means charities and community amateur sports clubs (CASCs) can claim an extra 25p for every £1 you give. It will not cost you any extra.
Charities can claim Gift Aid on most donations, but some payments do not qualify.
What you need to do
You need to make a Gift Aid declaration for the charity to claim. The charity or CASC will give you a form to sign. They must also have an HMRC charity reference number - ask the charity or CASC if you’re not sure.
You must give a declaration to each charity you want to donate to through Gift Aid.
You can include all donations from the last 4 years. Tell the charity about any tax years where you did not pay enough tax.
If the charity or CASC gets back more tax than you’ve paid, HMRC may ask you to pay more tax to cover the difference.
Paying enough tax to qualify for Gift Aid
Your donations will qualify as long as they’re not more than 4 times what you have paid in tax in that tax year (6 April to 5 April).
You must tell the charities you support if you stop paying enough tax.
If you donate through Payroll Giving
If your employer or pension provider offers a Payroll Giving scheme, any donations you give through the scheme will be taken before Income Tax is taken off.
You’ll still pay National Insurance contributions on the amount of your donation. But you will not pay any Income Tax on the amount you donate.
If you’re a higher-rate taxpayer
You can claim back the difference between the tax you’ve paid on the donation and what the charity got back when you fill in your Self Assessment tax return. It’s the same if you live in Scotland. Do this either:
- through your Self Assessment tax return
- by contacting HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and asking them to amend your tax code
You donate £100 to charity - they claim Gift Aid to make your donation £125. You pay 40% tax so you can personally claim back £25.00 (£125 x 20%).
With Payroll Giving, you do not pay the difference between the higher and basic rate of tax on your donation.
Getting tax relief sooner
In your Self Assessment tax return, you normally only report things from the previous tax year.
But for Gift Aid, you can also claim tax relief on donations you make in the current tax year (up to the date you send your return) if you either:
- want tax relief sooner
- will not pay higher rate tax in current year, but you did in the previous year
You cannot do this if:
- you miss the deadline for your Self Assessment tax return (31 January if you file online, or 31 October if you file by post)
- your donations do not qualify for Gift Aid - your donations from both tax years together must not be more than 4 times what you paid in tax in the previous year
If you do not have to send a tax return, contact HMRC and ask for a P810 form. You’ll need to submit it by 31 January after the end of the previous tax year.
If you get Married Couple’s Allowance
Your tax-free allowance may increase if you make donations through Gift Aid and claim Married Couple’s Allowance.
If you fill in a Self Assessment tax return, your allowance will be adjusted automatically if it needs to be.
If you do not, contact HMRC to tell them about your charity donations.