Upgrade to a new model: HMRC’s Gift Aid advice

HMRC has published new templates to help with Gift Aid Declaration wording.

The models, rolled out in October, cover one-off donations, multiple donations and sponsored events. They must be adopted from 5 April, 2016.

The main change involves a decluttering, with references to VAT and council tax removed.

It also includes new wording that highlights donors’ responsibility to pay sufficient tax to cover their gift, plus their responsibility to pay any difference.

HMRC suggests that charities and community amateur sports clubs (CASCs) use the model, but permits adaption in terms of branding or messages.

Helpfully, there are no changes to existing declarations, meaning those already in place will not have to be updated.

John Hemming, chairman of the Charity Tax Group which was involved in discussions about the change, said: “The introduction of a shorter Gift Aid Declaration is a welcome development which should help to ensure that Gift Aid is easier to understand for donors, maximising take-up by those eligible for the scheme.

“We are pleased that following discussions with the sector, HMRC has agreed to phase the implementation of the new Gift Aid Declaration until April next year.

“However, more needs to be done to promote awareness of this change, to ensure that charities are compliant and do not face the prospect of invalid claims.

“We will also continue to work with officials to ensure that the Gift Aid Declarations is as flexible as possible for use on digital platforms, including SMS, where take-up is still too low.”

Charities holding stocks of printed material with the declaration’s earlier wording can be used until the 5 April deadline.

However, charities able to show that such stock pre-existed the publication of updated guidance (22 October, 2015) can continue to use it beyond April 2016 until supplies are exhausted.

Below is a Charity Gift Aid Declaration template:

Charity Gift Aid Declaration

Boost your donation by 25p of Gift Aid for every £1 you donate

Gift Aid is reclaimed by the charity from the tax you pay for the current tax year.
Your address is needed to identify you as a current UK taxpayer.

 I want to Gift Aid my donation of £______________

Or

 I want to Gift Aid my donation of £______________ and any donations I make in the future or have made in the past 4 years to:

Name of charity__________________________________________________________

I am a UK taxpayer and understand that if I pay less income tax and/or Capital Gains tax in a tax year than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all of my donations in that tax year it is my responsibility to pay any difference.

My details

Title First name or initial(s)_________________________________________________

Surname_______________________________________________________________

Full home address________________________________________________________

Postcode___________________________ Date________________________________

Please notify the charity if you:

• Want to cancel this declaration
• Change your name or home address
• No longer pay sufficient tax on your income and/or capital gains.

If you pay income tax at the higher of additional rate and want to receive the additional tax relief due to you, you must include all your Gift Aid donations on your self-assessment tax return or ask HM Revenue & Customs to adjust your tax code.

Moore Thompson’s financial services for the charity and voluntary sector can navigate this and other issues for you. For more information about how we can help, please contact us.