Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response: Donate and Lend Your Support

The CARES Act and You

June 30, 2020 by Suzanne L. Ferrero, Esq.

Legislation encourages charitable giving

You may have heard about the CARES Act, but did you know the new legislation has incentives for charitable giving?

A portrait of Suzie Ferrero
Suzie Ferrero is a gift planning advisor in the Johns Hopkins Office of Gift Planning.

The CARES Act — the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security Act — became law in March, and while it focuses mainly on economic relief for individuals and businesses, it also includes tax provisions for charitable giving in 2020. Below are ways you could benefit, depending on how you file your tax return.

If you take the standard deduction: The standard deduction is a fixed dollar amount that reduces the income you are taxed on. If you fall in this category as most taxpayers do, you may receive a new above-the-line charitable deduction for cash contributions of up to $300 to Johns Hopkins.

If you itemize your deductions: Itemized deductions are eligible expenses individuals can claim on federal tax returns, which can decrease their taxable income. If you are an itemizer, you may deduct annual contributions of up to 100% of your adjusted gross income for cash gifts made this year to Johns Hopkins. This adjustment may be attractive if you wish to make a large cash donation.

A note about retirement plan distributions: The CARES Act temporarily waives required distributions from most retirement plans in 2020. However, if you are 70½ or older, you are still able to make a tax-free gift of up to $100,000 directly from your IRA to Johns Hopkins.If you wish to give to Johns Hopkins, please consult your financial advisor. The Office of Gift Planning is also available to answer your questions and help you with gift planning opportunities.

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Topics: Alumni, Friends of Johns Hopkins Medicine