Donating a Business

Hi -

If you donate a business to charity - can a reasonable valuation for the value of the business be deducted from your taxes.

We own a small manufacturing business and are thinking of donating the entire business to a charity to use for a work-study type situation. If we could deduct the value of the business from our taxes, we would call that a win for all involved. Let’s say the value of the infrastructure plus some multiple of the net yearly income.

Is this an option? Any help is greatly appreciated.

1 Like

My guess is the valuation number in your mind is greater than you could sell the business for to someone paying with a checkbook. The pay with a checkbook type number is how the IRS values donations of items as I understand things.

No - I imagine that would be a potential for an audit, so I was going to intentionally avoid over valuing.

I’m not sure about the valuation, I would think the bigger challenge would be whether you would be able to find a charity that would be interested in taking your donation. Have you actually got a charity in mind that would be open to taking your small manufacturing business?


Sure, it’s an option. That said, I would strongly suggest getting a professional appraisal and consulting an attorney who is well-versed in taxes, including charitable deductions. I would point out that the ‘value of the infrastructure’ when considering the balance sheet is the depreciated value, not the market value.

I would also caution that since it would be a non-cash deduction, your deduction would likely be limited to 30% of your AGI.



Given the limitation for an annual donation from AGI and you do not plan to over value, why not sell the business and make your charitable donations over a period of time. The IRS can’t quibble about the value of currency.

Perhaps the answer is in the original message.

Yes - They are actually quite interested. It is a school for developmentally disabled children. It looks like we will be able to sell it to them for a minor amount, so the tax deduction question no longer applies. Thanks for all the help everyone.